06.15.2015 The big camera versus the little camera

I’m not much for fads.  It’s just my preference to stay with tradition…more or less.  I’ll take advantage of technology alright but a lot of what folks are doing now is fine for them, but in most cases I’ll pass.  I’m more of a morning person, so no milky way shots despite their beauty and no in camera motion despite their abstract appeal.  I love what other folks are doing but it’s for them and not me.

Generally, I am not going crazy for iphonography either.  But every once in a while I’ll grab a shot.  Yesterday morning I was doing some long exposures…you got me-I’m going with that fad…of the Quabbin at dawn.  I was in the middle of 8 minutes…4 of exposure and 4 of noise reduction…when I noticed the light over Quabbin Hill.  Since most of the 8  minutes remained, the phone came out and did its thing along with the Snapseed app from Nik/Google.

Quabbin-Hill-fron-Gate-5-iPhone-061415-700webNot too bad, huh?

So as soon as the big camera was done, I recomposed for this scene and got off a shot.

Quabbin-Hill-fron-Gate-5--061415-700webOf course, after 8 or so minutes the light had changed.  As well, I had the Big Stopper (10 stops of Neutral Density) and a polarizer on board too.  So the difference is a combination of things as the polarizer and long exposure affect the color and, of course, the texture or lack thereof in the water.  Each has its charms.  The second from the 5D Mark II shows the tower more clearly and the tree line is better defined as well as the clouds are somewhat more interesting.  But the phone image has more warmth for sure.

Do you have a preference or is each able to stand on its own for you?


About Steve Gingold

I am a Nature Photographer with interests in all things related. Water, flowers, insects and fungi are my main interests but I am happy to photograph wildlife and landscapes and all other of Nature's subjects.
This entry was posted in Landscape, Nature Photography, Quabbin, Western Massachusetts and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

32 Responses to 06.15.2015 The big camera versus the little camera

  1. myrsbytes says:

    I prefer the second one. The colors are crisper. I find the cloudscape more interesting and I like that the mountains have a bit more detail – I can just make out three different humps. I do miss the water ripples though. It was fun to see both images, the quick and the slow. They make an interesting pair.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Steve, I had no idea you would use an iphone. 🙂 But aside form that- I like the colors in photo 2. I realize the light had changed but pic 2 simply appeals to me more. Both are nice shots.

    If I thought that I could get a decent close-up of the butterflies I’d get an Iphone but I don’t need an iphone since I like my older phone which I can text from and has a sllde out key board. My son and daughter hardly ever call- it’s almost always texting.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I am glad that you like the iPhone shot, but agree on preferring the bigger camera work. I am 50/50 between calling and texting. Mary Beth’s phone doesn’t do texting and she is who I call the most.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. bythebriny says:

    The first is pretty but I like the second better — much more dramatic with the streaked clouds and purple tones.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. shoreacres says:

    Both have something to commend them, but I really prefer the first: for the colors, and for the softness. Of course, tonight I would have taken either in preference to what we had — steel-gray, scudding clouds, clipping along about as fast as the water was rising.

    I just saw that the Navy site has called it – we have tropical storm Bill. I expect the Hurricane Center will upgrade shortly. I believe I’ll go for a quick walk while I still can. 🙂


    • Jim in IA says:

      Looks like a mess on the way for you.


    • I saw on television last night that there’s a voluntary evacuation order for Galveston. Seems strange to have been there just a few weeks ago.


      • shoreacres says:

        The order’s due mostly to the rising waterse that flood highway 87 on the Bolivar peninsula (my favored way to Anahuac) and the roads on the west end of Galveston Island. The water in the marina rose about a foot and a half over night: those marsh grasses on the way into Galveston have only their tips showing at this point. Even yesterday, the rise in the bay had left most marsh grasses along highway 146 under water.


    • I hope you enjoyed your walk and did not get treated too badly by TS Bill, Linda. I think we will see the remnants tomorrow night. I haven’t seen any news yet this morning to catch up on the severity there.

      I think the first has a more dreamlike quality to it almost resembling some of the in camera motion work folks do.


    • I just looked for a damage report, but the only things that I found were a few tweets about downed trees and a few power outages. Seems like Austin was hit kind of hard. Was your area spared or did you get a few inches and wind damage, Linda?


  5. Jim in IA says:

    If I stood by the big camera while it photographed the scene, would I see that photo, or the top one with my eyes? Or, neither? I have a feeling it might be the top one.

    They each have their special features and appeal. I can’t decide.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Girl Gone Expat says:

    The iPhone photos is nice for sure, but no match for Mark:)

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Andrew says:

    The second one wins hands down. I think the iPhone is a great back up and excellent for exploiting sudden bursts of creativity. I love the camera in my 6+. But for a landscape where you have time to compose and use a tripod the quality of the lens won’t match your big glass. I am interested that you use in camera NR. I switch it off and for a long exposure rely on the fact that I am shooting off a tripod at the lowest ISO possible.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Even at ISO 100 the MarkII get noticeable noise in the shadows. And the water is noisy in the darker areas, so I do use the in camera reduction. I will admit to frustration and boredom while waiting for the second exposure to elapse.
      I know that a lot of folks are doing serious photography with their iPhones, but mine isn’t likely to see that much work.


  8. Jackson says:

    The cooler WB and the more delicate cloud detail definitely point me to #2. It’s interesting, though, that #2 looks like it ought to have been eight minutes earlier rather than later. Do you think the iPhone and software preferred a warmer WB, perhaps as a general principle for punching up sunset shots? Or is it more that you chose a cooler rendition for #2? Or something else?

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s probably some of both, Jackson. I chose daylight for my white balance of the second shot for its introduction of blue. I left the white balance as is with the iPhone image and only straightened, cropped and adjusted the contrast a bit in Snapseed. Chronologically my adjustments probably are not accurate, but neither is a long exposure so I went more for interpretation than reality.


  9. Lottie Nevin says:

    I like both of the shots. Both have appeal for me. I think there’s some great photography being done with iphones – in fact I saw something earlier (can’t remember where!) that confirmed to me the spontaneity of phone/camera shots which I rather like. I’ll see if I can find the link …..

    Liked by 1 person

    • It sure is a lot faster to grab a shot with the phone and a lot of people are making not only spontaneous images but pretty awesome ones as well. I imagine the future will see more functionality built in to them.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Lottie Nevin says:

        Steve, we are both artists. I have to fight my purist tendencies – i.e only using paint/paper/print etc but I’ve recently found that digital drawing/painting also has its place. Juggling, that’s what we need to do! 😀

        Liked by 1 person

  10. I, too, like both. One little defect of the phone picture is the camera’s inability to hold details in the brightest part of the sky (perhaps because the sun was breaking out more by then), as compared with the same place in the long view.


  11. Had I not known the first was taken by a phone, I would never have guessed it. My theory is that any decent tool in the hands of a master will yield excellent results.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Lyle Krahn says:

    I like the second shot more but the first is good. You are now armed with another option – look out world.

    Liked by 1 person

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