Pin the Photographer on the Camera

This past weekend, my husband and I packed up the kids and headed to Disneyland and Disney’s California Adventure for two days (we had a total blast!).  Being a professional photographer gave me a unique perspective when visiting the parks.  As I walked around, I noticed that LOTS of people have DSLRs; A LOT.  The more I watched, the more I realized that these people could be placed in distinct categories and some of them are pretty darn humorous.

Please note, none of this is meant to offend, it’s just simply what I observed.

This photographer isn’t really interested in the functionality of their high-end camera.  My guess is that it was a very generous gift from someone, because this photographer is perpetually on auto and rocks the stock kit lens.  This photographer is thoroughly enjoying the time spent with their family and snaps away at the designated photo spots in the park.

This photographer has a slightly nicer equipment setup. Although I’ve noticed that she likes to give the perception that she is an expert, she doesn’t exactly know how to use it and fumbles slightly.  She poses her kids in precarious positions without regard to safety because she thinks this will make the best image.  Once said kids are balanced precariously, she has her husband block foot traffic so no other foreign persons are in her perfect images and shrugs off an dirty looks from any other park-goers.  She starts firing the shutter and – uh oh – up pops the on-camera flash, a dead-giveaway that she’s likely shooting in auto, versus using her camera to it’s fullest capability.  The kids are yelling and crying now that they are falling from their precarious positions and the momtographer throws up her hands in frustration, starts yelling at her kids that they can’t do anything right and they all walk off in utter misery.  *I did not witness any so-called dadtographers, though I’m sure they do exist.

While the momtographers I witnessed were all women, the “experts” I witnessed were all men.  These “experts” were oh-so-willing to jump in and tell their female counterparts what they were doing wrong with their camera, despite the fact that they were giving inaccurate advice.  And I [loosely] quote two conversations I overheard.  For the purposes of this blog post, I will assume that these couples were husband and wife.

Actual Conversation #1:
Wife: I just don’t understand why all of the pictures I take on Night Mode come out
Husband (Expert):  That’s because you’re using the LCD screen to take them.       Sharpness is created by the viewfinder.  Although it’s much harder to take a picture though the viewfinder, because it’s not as accurate as the LCD.

Actual Conversation #2:
Wife:  What would I use Continuous Mode for?
Husband (Expert): That’s for when YOU are moving the camera continuously.  It keeps the pictures from being blurry.
Wife: When I use it, it takes more than one picture at once.  How is that supposed to help blurriness?
Husband (Expert): You must be doing something wrong.  It shouldn’t be taking more than one picture.

The Habitual Snapper
This photographer takes pictures of anything. And EVERYTHING.  S/he snaps photos of his or her kids, but also the various sights of Disney, i.e. the castle, Main Street USA, etc.  However, this photographer takes it farther.  A fence becomes an unwilling victim of 20 snaps. A bush, grass, clouds…these all become digitally memorialized by The Habitual Snapper, in order to properly remember his or her vacation.  I literally witnessed a man taking a photo of a rock.  There was nothing special about this rock, it was literally, just a rock.  I also witnessed a man walking around with his camera on video.  I’m not talking about standing in a spot and filming the sights.  He was filming his WALK though Disneyland, as in, the pathways and an occasional ride.  He continued to do this for a full 8 – 10 minutes before we took another pathway and split off from him.

The Pro
There were two types of Pros.  The Equipment Master and The iPhone Wielder.  Let me explain…

The Equipment Master
This photographer has their large and very expensive camera equipment out for the world to see.  There is nothing “stock” about it.  We’re talking, pro camera, speedlight, lens, and a professional camera bag/backpack.  This photographer is maneuvering through the hoards of people, bending down, holding their camera over their head, and balancing themselves precariously and then snapping one shot which, of course, is perfect.  Repeat. Repeat.

The iPhone Wielder
Okay, so this photographer doesn’t carry a DSLR, but I felt that this category still deserved honorable mention. The iPhone Wielder isn’t bogged down with equipment, but still knows that they have a powerful photo-taking weapon.  Although this photographer only has this small device, they have 3 – 5 camera apps to make their images more interesting and/or jazz them up (what’s a photo without editing?).  Because they understand lighting, composition, and whatnot, they manage to have the images come out halfway decent, despite the absence of manual camera settings.  They still miss the comfort of manual settings and don’t love to let the camera control them.   They are very vocal about this.

Did I miss any?  Know of another category? Share it!

So which category do you think I fit into?