Sunday, January 28, 2018

First Steps

A few days ago, my friend, the photographer and painter John Farnsworth, did an Instagram post about the beginnings of the digital photography age. He harkens back to a whopping one-megapixel unit that could store all of 70 images. My own baby steps came with a Nikon Coolpix 5000, so named because of its stellar 5 megapixels of resolution. I did a search yesterday that told me my sweet little point and shoot weighed in at a hefty $1, 095. Holy crap, batman. Today we can pick up a mirrorless unit with a one-inch sensor and 20 megapixels for, oh, $450.

The cool Coolpix entered the market in November of 2001 and I, trailblazer that I am, owned one shortly thereafter.  It was this darling unit that gave me my first inkling of digital’s promise. Shown above is a shot of an agave plant at famed Huntington Gardens in Pasadena, California. I was impressed from the get go. My fate was sealed.

In late March 2002 I had a ski trip to France planned and, as misfortune would have it, Canon announced the first truly high resolution DSLR, the 1Ds with 10.1 megapixels in a body the weight and size of a mainframe computer. And they had the audacity to charge $7,995 for the monster. Naturally, I needed one for my trip and embarked to Zurich, Geneva and Chamonix $7,700 lighter. The image above is from that legendary machine. My skiing was much improved as you can imagine.

To those who have slept through this movie before. Deal with it.


Daryl Black said...

This was a great post about the history of your digital journey, Steve. You are always on the cutting edge of photographic technology, and it was wonderful to read that your Coolpix was 2 megapixels. Baby steps that were taken leading to the amazing technology we have today. I still have all of my film cameras - working or not - and my first digital camera, a Minolta Dimage A2, complete with 8 megapixels. The photograph you took with the first Canon DSLR has always been one of my favorites, and I personally am glad you departed on your European adventure $7,700 lighter.

John Ellsworth said...

Love the whole thing. You're a gifted gentleman.