In praise of the DSLR camera

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If you still use a DSLR camera nowadays given the usefulness of smartphones, the phrase mirrorless has become de rigueur.

Photography like most other things in life have become progressively more digital. Technology is increasingly mediating every aspect of our experiences, a screen comes with everything.

Digital retouching and filters have dramatically changed the reality of modern photography. It has also made photography even more ephemeral. I have an online photo library that holds thousands of pictures, compared to the hundreds of photos that my parents have in an old album and envelopes from film processing labs stuffed in a chest of draws.

Viewfinder

I still like ‘mirrored’ or single lens reflex cameras.

The digital single lens reflex or DSLR camera free the photographer from the tyranny of film; but still allows the photographer to frame up a shot in advance before using the battery life of the camera.

Looking through the view finder of an SLR gives you a temporary isolation from peripheral visuals allowing you to focus mentally as well as physically on the subject in question.  It allows you to slow down and take your time in the moment. It changes the way you see the world. The experience using a mirrorless camera is rather different. There isn’t the ‘focus’ in the experience and it blends post production with taking the picture in the same time and space.

Of course, as with most technology experiences, the human experience is viewed in a very one dimension manner. An object to be overcome in the least minimum viable way possible. It’s a very regressive approach to design, cost is put before simplification. The increased focus on software engineering leaves a rough unsatisfactory digital experience.

The products lack the ability to spark joy as Mari Kondo would say. That makes the whole obsolescence and replacement cycle so much easier. More related content here.