When I started photographing, I equated the ability for anyone to deliver great photos from using great cameras and those great cameras should not only have bared a hefty price tag but they should be packed with bragging right features regardless if they knew how to implement them or not.
I spent the first 6 months shooting with an Olympus E-500 and I didn’t bother trying to understand this new capacity of controlling aperture, shutter speed or ISO because I was convinced that any I shot taken would render equal to the high caliber work I drooled over when browsing Flickr.
Fast forward 3 years later and the pure absence of those silly thoughts is what’s made me absolutely comfortable not just photographing with a dSLR but in trusting oneself to shoot anything with the simplest of cameras like an iPhone and knowing that the merit in your work is as valuable as with any other image taking device. I thought very little of cell phone pictures and for a long time I never uploaded any to my Flickr stream because you could never compare the image quality to that of a dSLR and the fact is that you can’t and you shouldn’t because they are there own entity and they should represent the characteristics that make them unique. I share my iPhone photographs more now than ever before.
I could care less what type of camera I use as long as you put me in a place where I can wander alone for hours purposely getting lost. Making decisions on what to shoot is not something I struggle with but I do enjoy the challenges involved in capturing a really good photo, both technical and physical and that was the case this weekend at Coney Island.
I’ve visited this famous landmark about 5 times before but with each visit, there’s always this ongoing series of tiny triumphs where each one motivates me to keep going back and seeing what else I can find. Somehow your perspective changes when you swap the gear you normally use and I absolutely encourage you to choose a location you’ve photographed many times before with the exception that you shoot with something totally different like an iPhone.
Whether these series of Coney Island photographs are better is all relative but I do feel they’re unlike the material I’ve shot before. With the iPhone, I somehow always unintentionally tend to shoot more in sequence as oppose to trying to get 1 or 2 shots that will stand above the rest. My only qualms about shooting relentlessly with an iPhone is realizing how much your battery drains.
I did have the Nikon D90 with me on this day but I used it for about 15mins and opted to shoot entirely with the iPhone instead because it was less conspicuous and more inspiring.