Back to the future, once upon a time with my first DSLR camera!

I remember a time that seems so far in the past now!

I bought my first DSLR camera almost 10 years ago, in 2005. This Canon 350D was my very first “expert” camera and was mounted with a Sigma 18 – 200mm zoom. I didn’t know yet how this range and type of zoom was bad. For me it was just the perfect equipment at that time and I was ready to shoot from very short to long distance!

I only learnt later that a so much large zoom can’t be a good one no matter the manufacturer is and that a fixed lens is by far much better than any zoom on the market! That’s why I only use fixed lenses now and that I own 17 of them, from 20mm to 400mm.There is something alive in this still life picture! Wonder if you find it!

I took this picture end of August 2005 in St Germain en Laye, a beautiful city located 15km west of Paris. When I look at the EXIF of this picture, I feel ashamed… The picture is definitely nice but… looking at the details, everything is wrong and I know that I wouldn’t set my camera like this if I had to take this picture again:

  • ISO: 1600
  • Exposure time: 1/400
  • Fnumber: 6.4
  • Focal length: 200mm

ISO 1 600!! Using ISO more than 800 in 2005, that’s crazy, almost criminal! But I don’t see a lot of noise on this picture, meaning that this Canon 350D wasn’t too bad in fact!

If I had to take again this picture, I’d definitely use more appropriate settings, like an exposure time at 1/200 sec (largely enough for a 200mm focal length) so as to reduce ISO at 800 maximum. And I wouldn’t use such a zoom! My current 200mm fixed lens opens at F:2.8! It means I could take this picture wide open at ISO 100! And as this is a fixed lens, the picture would be more sharp, with a better bokeh and a better color render

But this is how I learnt about photography and how to use a camera!

This is how I learnt that I only like fixed lenses because this forces to think about the composition and to use my legs to zoom in or zoom out. I really enjoyed this Canon DSLR even if I definitely don’t like Canon ergonomics at all (where is the second wheel for the thumb???), but I really don’t like this type of zoom! May be one day I’ll buy a 70-200 or a 24-70, but no more!

8 Comments on Back to the future, once upon a time with my first DSLR camera!

  1. Of course, 1600 iso was a bit high😉 but for a laptop screen, it’s OK. And in 2005, there was not a lot of pixels too !! as said dancing with shadows, it’s a lot of lens and weight when you travel. And you seems to be a big traveller, don’t you ?!

    • You’re right! Indeed the 350D was a 8Mpxl only camera, that’s why this 1600 ISO pictures looks ok🙂
      I’d like to be a big traveller, but I’m not yet, need to make some money first to pay the flights! That’s my 2015 main objective and I hope that next year I could start traveling agin🙂

  2. To my untrained eye, your picture looked pretty good to me! Out of curiosity, if you use only fixed lenses now, does this mean you have to carry a whole bagful of lenses every time you go on a shoot?

    • It’s pretty good because it’s a small size. I don’t think I can print it more than 30cm x 40cm. I need to make a test soon🙂
      Regarding the lenses, you’re right, I carry some of them with me, but never more than 3 at the same time: my Ricoh GR 28mm and my Pentax K3 with 35 / 77 / 200 mm. It’s not that much I think especially as they’re compact lenses🙂

  3. wow they have been around that long – oh how time flies….! lovely pic but then I love cats!

    • Yes, they stayed a long time on my computer… and time flies… that’s why it sometimes good to have a look on archives, just to remember!🙂

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