St. Augustine Family Photographer | Danielle Brooks Photography
St. Augustine Family Photographer and Family Portrait Photography Studio. Specializing in Family Photography, Senior Portraits, and Head Shot Photography.


St. Augustine photographer specializing in families, children, and seniors.

Digital SLR'S vs. Point & Shoots

There are an incredible amount new photographers in recent years and its all thanks to the mass production of cheaper DSLR cameras. When I first started working for Flagler, I was given a Canon Rebel T2i and I loved it! It instantly became my best friend. However, I had no idea how to use it. I took photos in full auto and was shooting both in jpeg and RAW. I lived and breathed the camera manual. I was following several photographer blogs and they talked constantly about taking the camera out of Auto and shooting in Manual. The thought of doing that was scary. Mainly because I knew Auto could pull it off. If all else fails, Auto will be there for me. Needless to say, my images were horrible, and I was only using about 7% of what that camera was capable of doing. I had no understanding of shutter speed, ISO, and aperture. I thought that just because I was shooting with a fancy camera I would get baller images. And that wasn't the case.  I knew that the images I was taking for work weren't the best and I had to make a change. So one day I bravely rotated the settings dial to the ominous "M" and started to take photos.

To say there was a learning curve was a gross understatement. All of my photos were either over or under exposed. It really made me appreciate the current technology we have today. We can instantly see our photos and tell if its a good photo or not. I remember being in high school and learning how to use a darkroom. Now they are a rarity. Before DSLR's and point and shoots, they had no way to tell whether their settings were right. They had to send in film, remember what their settings were and learn how to change them. The learning process was MUCH slower. How truly blessed we are that we have the ability to learn much quicker. It took me about a year to grow into my Rebel. It was a GREAT camera and I would recommend it to any new photographer. But the Rebel might not be the best fit for everyone out there.

This leads me into figuring out which camera suits YOUR needs the best. There are many different options of DSLR's and point and shoots you can choose from. DSLR's are expensive and I wouldn't want you to rush into a decision without some insight. I was blessed to not have to buy a camera because of my job, but many of you don't have that opportunity. So for those of you thinking about buying a camera for yourself or as a Christmas gift, then this post is for you!

A DSLR is for you if:

  • You have an interest in learning the technological side of photography. (ISO, Shutter Speed, Aperture.)
  • You have the TIME to learn the camera. There is an adjustment period and for those of you who just want a camera, I would suggest a point and shoot.
  • Photography is a hobby and you want to improve your skill.
  • You are not afraid of lugging a bulky camera around.
  • Want to have greater control of your camera settings.

A Point & Shoot is for you if:

  • You want the convenience of being able to take your camera just about anywhere.
  • Just want a camera to capture the moment.
  • Aren't ready to make the financial investment.
  • Want a fast way to capture images.
  • Aren't really interested in being able to change lenses in the future.

This is not by any means an all encompassing list. Just a couple of suggestions. If you are a parent and just want a camera to point and shoot, sure, you'll get good images with a DSLR, but you could have paid far less by buying a point and shoot. Just because it seems like everyone else out there has an DSLR doesn't mean they are getting their moneys worth. You have to have a basic knowledge of photography, or be willing to learn, to get the most out of a DSLR. Hopefully this blog post helped with your decision making. If you have any questions about good cameras or where to start, please feel free to email me!

Isn't this funny? When I jumped from the Rebel to the Canon 5D Mark II I felt like I had molted my shell into a bigger body. Haha, that's exactly what happened. The 5D dwarfs my Rebel, but I still remember it fondly.  :) I'll have to post about the next big jump in cameras, an full frame camera vs. a crop frame camera.

PS. For those of you wanting to follow me on Instagram you can find me @DanielleBPhoto

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