The Early Years
I began my photographic experience with a Argus C-3. This was a range-finder camera and took great pictures!
In 1969 I purchased my first Single Lens Reflex (SLR) camera, a Pentax H1A. That camera served me very well as I experimented with darkroom techniques, traveled throughout Europe, and began producing photographic art.
In 1975, I traded my Pentax (and all of my lenses) in for an Olympus OM-1. I added a second camera body and then a third body, the Olympus OM-2. The Olympus system was simply wonderful! I carried the Olympus to several countries and then moved to Guam.
Moving to Nikon
A very good friend on Guam introduced me to his Nikon system. Before I knew it, I was the proud owner of a Nikon 8008 and several Nikon lenses.
As digital photography improved, and passed the 6 megapixel limit, digital photographs were finally to the quality of 35mm film cameras. I had already begun to have my negatives scanned and was using Photoshop to prepare my photos for printing and presentation. So, in 2004, I moved to the Nikon D70. The D70 boasted a 6.1 megapixel sensor. It provided excellent photographs — and was compatible with my Nikon lenses!
My Equipment Today
Finally, I ordered a Nikon D300 in July 2007. I was one of the first to order and had to wait until Thanksgiving, 2007 to receive it!
Technically, the D300 is incredible — as for quality of photographs, it’s difficult to beat! It offers the photographer a 12.3 megapixel DX-format CMOS sensor, as well as the choice of selecting bit-depths at 12-bit (4,096 tones) or 14-bit (16,384 tones), both yielding incredible image quality through a full 16-bit processing pipeline. Furthermore, the D300 enables photographers to choose smaller files at faster operating speeds, as opposed to larger files with smoother tonal gradations as slower operating speeds.
Reproducing Subtle Tones in the Highlights & Detail in the Shadows
Another photographic breakthrough occurred, the introduction of High Dynamic Range (HDR) photography for the average user. Although introduced in the 1930′s, through today’s software and the use of high-end digital cameras, HDR permits the photographer to capture a much wider range of light than normal photographs display. The photographer can choose (via various software, e.g. Photomatix or Dynamic Photo HDR) to produce a ‘normal’ photo with extended dynamic range — or photographs that look ‘extreme’ and almost as though they were drawn by graphic artists. For a nice article on HDR, please click here.
Or here for a Pop Photo article on ‘how to’.