So in my last post I talked about how I have seen photography change. I briefly mentioned different types of cameras, but didn’t really give much detail on the experience of using each of these camera types. Today’s post is going to do just that.


The first type of camera I ever used was a disposable film camera. My parents would buy me and my siblings a couple each to take on our family holidays so we could take our own pictures, of whatever we wanted (I used to take a lot of pictures of the swimming pools). They are ideal for convenience and for those who aren’t fussed about changing any settings or making any amendments to their photos making them ideal for children. When I was young I just wanted to feel involved when my mum was taking photos, and so having my own disposable camera meant I didn’t get in her way but I didn’t have to miss out. Using a disposable camera is easy, it’s a simple point and click process which is ideal for young children, and might explain why they are so popular at weddings (even an aunt who’s had one too many could figure out how to use it). While there was never a guarantee that the photos would come out as intended I always loved the experience of using a disposable camera, and I still do now. I revel in the anticipation of waiting for the photos to develop which isn’t something that you can get with other types of camera. Not to mention the limited photo opportunities you get, which makes the last few chances the most important- there was nothing worse than realising you’re almost out of photos half way through a family holiday. This is definitely one of the major downsides to disposable cameras as if you do not have any more then you have to be selective about what you take pictures of.


The second type of camera I have used is a digital compact camera, which usually looks something like this:

(This one isn’t my old one, it belonged to my mum)

Having this camera eliminated the risk of running out of film, so I didn’t have to worry about having a spare camera around. It allowed me to check the photos after taking them so if something wasn’t quite right I could send my family back to their places for another try- which they loved. In addition to this there was an automatic flash so it wasn’t necessary for me to evaluate every situation to see if the flash needed to be turned on, this meant no more wasted opportunities. While the quality of these photos were far superior to the disposable camera, they didn’t always come out looking the best when they were printed as the display that I could view them on was small and so mistakes could easily be missed. On top of this I had to be far more careful with the camera as I didn’t want it to get damaged or broken, which meant I took less risks with photo taking and considered things more than I did when I used disposable cameras.


When I started my photography A-Level I was introduced to a type of camera that I hadn’t even heard of before, the DSLR. For a while I used the cameras that the school provided but sharing them with a class of other students who’d also never used them before meant it was difficult to take the time I needed to get the best photos. Despite this the difference in my photography was apparent very quickly, and so it didn’t take long for me to decide I needed a DSLR of my own. So £500 (ish) later I had my own Canon EOS 100D, it sounds fancy but it’s pretty ‘basic’ in the grand scheme of DSLR’s. This camera has a massive range of settings that massively changed the way I take photos. Here’s a picture of the dial that shows all of the different shooting modes.

There are options that are specific for so many situations, sports, landscape, portrait and more. Each of these modes have default settings that are ideal for their subject but settings can be changed manually to make sure the shot is exactly right. In addition to this I can elect for the camera to focus itself automatically or I can opt to focus manually so I can adapt it for effect in different situations. For times when I want to be able to point and shoot I can set the camera to intelligence auto, which means the camera changes the settings automatically based on the lighting, the object being photographed and the surroundings. This means that if I am taking photos of my family I can spend less time fiddling with my camera and more time focusing on them.


Pretty much every phone that comes out nowadays has a camera on it, even if it isn’t the best quality camera out there. This is great for convenience, but for me it just doesn’t compare to using a proper camera. Don’t get me wrong they’re ideal for convenience, and I’m not ashamed to say I use my phone to take my fair share of selfies. But for taking photos, of holidays, or family gatherings or other events I just can’t seem to get along with my phone. I find it difficult to take photos that I am really proud of, I don’t have the most up to date phone with the highest quality camera but I don’t think having one would change my view. They are ideal for people who are not as into photography, who just want to be able to take a few pictures of their friends and family every now and then.

For me, photography is an escape, I like to go out with my camera and nothing else and just see what happens. This is something that gets lost when using a camera phone, and I could constantly be distracted by other things. The experience of taking photos is something I do to get away from social media, I do not post my photos all over social media, it is something I do for myself- for my own enjoyment. While this isn’t the case for many others I will always have a place for my DSLR.

Join me next time when I will be talking about the digital impact on post production, and how processes have changed over the years.

Thanks for reading.