Real photographers don't use Program...

Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by Steve Mack, Nov 2, 2010.

  1. Steve Mack

    Steve Mack Member

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    ...or do they? I run my N80 and F100 in Aperture most of the time, but every now and again I get the hankering to put the thing on autopilot and fire away. I'm usually satisfied with the results; I've decided that whatever the faults of my photos, it's always the loose nut behind the lens that is amiss.

    But while I use Program more or less regularly, there's always a little niggling doubt in the back of my mind. On the one hand, a lot of writers give me the impression that Program is limiting my creativity, that I have given up control of my photos to the camera and its algorithms that the manufacturer built in. On the other hand, I paid big bucks, so to speak, for the program which is included, so I might as well use it, every now and again. Of course, YMMV.

    What are your opinions on the creativity-robbing Program?

    Thanks to all who reply.

    With best regards,

    Stephen
     
  2. bobwysiwyg

    bobwysiwyg Subscriber

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    I confess without guilt I use it on my N90 occasionaly.
     
  3. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    Program is only Auto, it chooses you can over-ride easily with most cameras.

    I wish my LF cameras had Program :D

    Ian
     
  4. Casey Kidwell

    Casey Kidwell Member

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    I use program a lot in conjunction with flash when I'm working. But that's because I know exactly what it's up to. And I can't calculate flash ratios/ distance as quickly as the camera. In that instance I think it's proper use of a tool versus not knowing my butt from a given aperture.
     
  5. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

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    I have two cameras with the program facility I've had both of them more than twenty years and I can't recall ever using it, if I use AE I prefer either shutter or aperture priority. depending on the subject.
     
  6. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    I'm more worried about why my Canon's have a Tv - transvestite mode, I don't do dressing up to take images, and the Flower mode, hang on I'm an unreformed hippy :smile:

    Ian
     
  7. I will use the program mode on my Nikon N75 and Nikon F100 if I do not have much time, but I will change the shutter speed to get the aperture or speed that I want. If I think the suggested exposure is not what I want, then I over-ride by changing the exposure plus or minus and choose the aperture or speed that I want. Generally I will use 35mm if time is short or the subject is moving took much for MF.

    The Hasselblad is my preferred camera for subjects that I am seriously interested in working with, even if they are moving quickly. The Hasselblad does not have "modes".

    When I have lots of time I use the 4x5s. Although with the Speed Graphic and the Model D Graflex, even children at play can be successful photographed.

    Steve
     
  8. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    For a camera like my OM-2s, which doesn't have an "Off" position, leaving it on Program makes a lot of sense when you put the camera down.

    Of course you also need to leave the lens at it's largest aperture to get the full effect :smile:.
     
  9. bblhed

    bblhed Member

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    If you have a Nikon FA, it can override your settings in anything but M so that is sort of like P.
     
  10. keithwms

    keithwms Member

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    Real photographers use any and all resources they need...
     
  11. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    i'm not sure how it robs anyone of creativity ...
    i use auto on a few cameras i have
    and i do the same thing
    for my leica m3, graflex slr and pen ft ...

    if one can't compose auto won't help...
     
  12. wclark5179

    wclark5179 Member

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    I thought the "P" mode stood for professional.
     
  13. Barry S

    Barry S Member

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    Program is the gateway drug for digital. :devil:
     
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  15. Poisson Du Jour

    Poisson Du Jour Subscriber

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    Mm-hmm. That's what I thought. :pouty: :laugh:
    Used it twice on last weekend's waterfall and gorge walk in rapidly changing light. It's no crime to employ the electronic mastery of modern cameras as a "change of method" now and then. Most of my shooting is in Av or Tv, occasionally M.
     
  16. Moopheus

    Moopheus Subscriber

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    All of my film cameras are mechanical, no auto-anything. I don't think of automation so much as robbing me of creativity as robbing me of fun. I just enjoy the mechanical process of setting up the shot. For me, taking the picture is as much a part of the fun of photography as actually having the picture. It not so much that I don't want the camera making decisions for me (though I generally don't), but I spend enough time during the day in front of screens and computers, and my photo time I want to be away from that.
     
  17. Bill Burk

    Bill Burk Subscriber

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    At first I thought Tv was a dedicated setting with a shutter speed matched and synchronized to take pictures from a television screen or computer monitor.
    ---
    I regret now more than anything -- relying on exposure recommended by camera.

    Doesn't matter if I used full manual. The fact I used match-needle meant the exposure was average.

    I am striving now to pick the exposure that is correct for the subject. And I wish all those years I didn't lean on that crutch.

    I won't say it is creativity-robbing to use automatic focus, aperture, shutter.

    But if you feel so inclined, you might find it is a creative idea to avoid using automation.
     
  18. lxdude

    lxdude Member

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    You mean Tv isn't Video? No wonder I could never figure out how to make it work!
     
  19. Brian Legge

    Brian Legge Member

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    I use an XA4. Not many options, though if someone wants to give me a totally manual camera with the same footprint, wide angle lens and the option to go aperture priority when needed, I'll take it. :wink: XA4 was only $10 though so I don't see myself upgrading any time soon.
     
  20. mesh

    mesh Member

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    The only camera I own that's 'auto' is a Contax Aria. I use it in P mode whenever I am firing away with TTL flash, and am happy with the results. If I have the time and want to be creative with Flash I will manually meter with a handheld. But with TTL it's always in P. Normally in natural light it's almost always Av.
     
  21. Poisson Du Jour

    Poisson Du Jour Subscriber

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    Yes you might feel so inclined (to use automation) when conditions are changing much faster than you can adapt to them manually and continuously.

    Yes, autofocus, whether lock-on or indicative, is excellent for people who do not have razor-sharp, unaided visual acuity: we do not all fine LF the easiest to work with despite its benefits. This usability at an individual level naturally has nothing to do with creativity. Bit of a waste to have a camera that is bristling with technology that is armed and ready for challenging situations. And you can also learn from how the camera is dealing with those situations (e.g. Program, with Tv bias, alters continuously during exposure).
     
  22. fschifano

    fschifano Member

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    I'm not at all hesitant to say that I use Program mode with my N90s and F100 when appropriate. When there's fast action and changing light, it's invaluable.
     
  23. dehk

    dehk Member

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    Your Matrix Metering still works under Aperture or Shutter Priority. You're still taking advantage of what you really paid for when you're in A or S.

    Personally, I only use program for flash mostly. Other than that, I don't like program that much. It's almost like, "Whats going on, why are you doing that camera? It should be in f8, not f4" Etc.
     
  24. Bill Burk

    Bill Burk Subscriber

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    Garyh,

    You're right, I bet the light fluctuated wildly when you walked that gorge.

    Ironically it is for those conditions that I wish I never had auto.

    Now I meter a few times as the clouds come and go and try to memorize the f/stops corresponding to the amount of light.

    I'm reasonably capable of doing this - switching between a couple recent meterings as I notice the light come and go.

    But I wish I had a better feel for it and I am sure if I never had auto I would be better at it.
     
  25. Vaughn

    Vaughn Member

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    My first camera (Rolleiflex) had no meter, so I guess I never thought much about auto modes of any kind. My present 35mm camera is a Nikon N2000. I am so use to matching shutter speed and f-stop via the meter, that the various auto modes seem to be unneeded, but I don't use the tiny format much. Due to my years with LF cameras, I would more likely use an aperture-priority setting, as that would be the closest to the way I think about exposures.
     
  26. Wade D

    Wade D Member

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    I don't use the program mode on my Maxxum 8000i at all. I use either shutter or aperture mode mostly. It came with 10 program cards which I am just beginning to experiment with. They appear to be of some use but I really haven't had the chance to explorer all the possibilities. I'm used to all manual cameras so this is a new experience for me.
     
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