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Portraits on a budget…

I plan to shoot a long term (lifetime) project, of portraits of meditators and their meditation environments. I used to have the full pro arsenal, and have been out of the game for almost 3 years now. I am out of touch with the latest kit, and want to pick some brains.

I’m a writer and meditation teacher right now, and close to zero budget. I’ve set a budget of £300 for my camera, initially. I want good low light capability, compact, and portrait friendly. Right now, I’m feeling it for the Fuji X10. Anyone have any thoughts on this? Anyone shooting or shot with one? I wish the video was good on it, that’s my only reservation. But it’s not. I could get by with iphone video for now, as it’s not the main goal. Maybe.

Other thoughts are G12 (I used to shoot with G9, D300s, Zeiss, Nikkor and Olympus Zuiko glass), Nikon 1 V1, Panasonic GX1, but all go just over my budget, and my draw is still to the Fuji X10.

My other thought is to buy an Olympus film body, OM2 or similar, as I used to shoot them, or Nikon, and shoot film.

Thoughts?

by Ando Perez at 2012-12-29 12:14:05 UTC | Bookmark | | Report spam→

The way things are evolving, the challenge of a very long-term project will be maintaining visual coherence (assuming that matters to you). The look of your work will change with the technology.
Any saving you make buying an old film camera will (very) rapidly be nullified by the cost of film and processing.
A Sony RX100 perhaps?

by DPC | 30 Dec 2012 00:12 | Paris, France | | Report spam→
Very true DPC. When we meditate we transcend the concepts of long term and short term. But when we buy cameras we must realize that everything changes- and in the case of digital cameras everything changes very rapidly.

by Barry Milyovsky | 30 Dec 2012 03:12 | Manhattan, United States | | Report spam→
Thanks DPC and Barry for your thoughts on this. Yes, I did take a look at the RX100, but it takes me a little over my already squeaky tight budget.

I hear you on the challenge of a long term project, but it’s something related to my bigger picture of being a Zen meditation and mindfulness teacher, and that is for life. I’ll bear in mind the coherence issue. There are some ways to address that in terms of seeking a personal style, completed via postprocessing, to give a certain look to the work, but who knows what I’ll be shooting with in another 30 years? As a Zen Buddhist, I think I won’t worry about that. I’m here now, and want to do the job. That’s what matters.

Thanks again. It’s good to be back on Lightstalkers after a 2-3 year sabbatical from working as a photographer. I feel like I’m onto something again.

by Ando Perez | 30 Dec 2012 15:12 | Paris, France | | Report spam→
Cartier-Bresson once said to the Dalai Lama that he thought his method of photography, of capturing the decisive moment, was a very good expression of Buddhist practice as activity for its own sake. The Dalai Lama replied, smiling, of course (more or less as I am quoting from memory,) “You photographers are always thinking of what your photographs look like and you are very attached to the results. You never use the camera without film in it.”

by Barry Milyovsky | 30 Dec 2012 16:12 (ed. Dec 30 2012) | Manhattan, United States | | Report spam→
: ) Thanks for the lovely quote Barry!

/|\

by Ando Perez | 31 Dec 2012 06:12 | Paris, France | | Report spam→
@Ando

“I wish the video was good on it, that’s my only reservation. But it’s not. I could get by with iphone video for now”

I have used the X10 extensively for a year now and I think its video quality would trounce your iPhone video in an instance!

Both X10 and iPhone 5 have 1080p HD video – and the still images that the X10 produces are really very good indeed – way good enough for your project.

I remember seeing a photo from Marc Hofer in TIME magazine taken with the X10 – http://bit.ly/VeftbG

Best regards

Matt

by Matthew Richards | 31 Dec 2012 07:12 | Bangkok, Thailand | | Report spam→
Hi Matt,

I went to a dealer today, and ran some test shots on the x10. I’m sold by your faith too. It’s my kind of camera, and I shot a Fuji S5 for some years, and love Fuji’s processing.

Thanks for your feedback.

by Ando Perez | 01 Jan 2013 19:01 | Paris, France | | Report spam→

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Participants

Ando Perez, Writer & Photographer Ando Perez
Writer & Photographer
Brighton , United Kingdom
DPC, Photographer DPC
Photographer
Paris , France
Barry Milyovsky, totally unprofessional Barry Milyovsky
totally unprofessional
(emperor of ice cream )
New York , United States
Matthew Richards, Photojournalist Matthew Richards
Photojournalist
Mae Fah Luang , Thailand


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