The New Nikon D4 soon to be released...YAWN...

by Jorge Moro January. 06, 2012 3226 views

Yes. Yawn. Seems many folks are salivating over the camera specs due to news leak of the Nikon D4. Me? Thank you but I think I will pass this time around. Both my D700, and D300, with my Nikon lenses suit me just fine. The D4, at $6000.00, is not needed nor required for my shooting jobs, or style.

After I read all the news, and rumors of the supposed new Nikon D4 after midnight last night, I got up, went back downstairs to my office and looked up my most recent sale (December 2011) that I made via one of my agents. This is my largest sale of images to date and I was curious as to which of my cameras was used to generate those images. The breakdown surprised me somewhat and in my case shows that it’s not all about the megapixels, nor the camera used as much as the brain and the rest of the human component that stands behind the viewfinder of just about ANY camera under most circumstances. I'm in no way saying I'm a brainiac, or an artistic genius, as I don't want to be called arrogant (again). Besides, I'm not. I'm just creative and love to shoot like ALL of you here.

As many of you have read in past posts, my recent trip to San Juan, Puerto Rico in mid-November yielded many useful and In My (very humble) Opinion beautiful images. They were all shot with my Panasonic Lumix LX5 point and shoot. I did not take any dSLR with me on this vacation. Those images are just starting to show up on my online agents sites, as well as the brick and mortar places I deal with.

Anyway I digress – In early December one of my agents made a huge sale on my behalf. They sold 159 of my images for a new hotel/office complex yet to be built and no, I don’t know where it's being built yet. Total sale: US $55.6k give or take a few bucks, but keep in mind this particular firm not only sells the images via a sales force, they also print, mat, frame, and actually hang the images once the facility is built and ready to be decorated and furnished.
Of course, I will never see that amount of money from the sale as there are many mouths to feed in the pipeline including the sales force at the agency; they earned and deserve every penny in commission. And yes, I do plan on visiting the hotel/office complex once it’s completed in early 2013 assuming it’s relatively close to a location I was planning on shooting in or around at some point in the future.

And I digress yet again— As I was saying, I went downstairs and fired up my computer at 1 in the morning. I was curious to see, out of the 159 images that were selected to be displayed in the lobby, guest rooms, and complex offices, which of my cameras was used to create them, and the megapixels of each camera used. Here is the breakdown:

Fuji Finepix S1 Pro (3.1MP) 6 images. and yes, you read this correct. A (at the time) $4000 dollar body only dSLR, that generated a “whopping” 3.1 megapixels jpeg at a base ISO of 320!! That was news back in 2001. Believe me! But it was a truly SPECTACULAR CAMERA (that I just sold in 2008 because I couldn’t bear to part with it) I do believe, the fisher-price toy digital camera being sold today at many fine toy stores has more megapixels than my first “pro” dSLR. We have in fact come a long way baby!

Fuji Finepix S2 Pro (6MP) 81 images. Camera sold and now used for professional, studio product photography work somewhere in Ohio.
Nikon D700 (12.1 MP) 24 Images. I Still have it.
Nikon D300 (12.3 MP) 45 images - first one was stolen out of my car together with other gear and I went back out and re-purchased another before I received the insurance check. Still shoot with it, though not as much.
Panasonic Lumix (10.1 MP) 3 images (would have been more I’m sure) but I just started producing and submitting work with that little workhorse.

Amazing isn’t it? Take another look at the megapixels. Now, would 16mp in the new D4 help? Or the supposed 36MP in the vaporware Nikon D800 that is supposed to be released soon? Maybe – under certain circumstances such as landscapes, travel, sports—the upcoming Olympics come to mind. And, if you love to, or have to crop, more megapixels would definitely help in that department.

How about for portraits, or weddings you may ask? Would more megapixels help? IMHO the answer would be No. Do you really want to shoot a bride with a 36mp camera? Oh My. LOL. Do you really want each and every imperfection, pimple, zit or pore in her face to stand out? Do you like to do a lot of post-processing to clean skin imperfections? I don’t. Time is money. The less I have to do in post, the more I make, the happier I am and the happier my clients are since I can turn work around quickly. However, if someone wants me to shoot with a higher megapixel camera than what I have: No Problema! is my motto. I'll just rent whatever they “think” I need, and bill them for the rental. Easy peasy. I have a good friend who shoots with a Hasselblad 50 megapixel system. His work is incredibly sharp, detailed, fine lines, etc. But unless he is looking for a certain look, his portraits are usually “softened” up (especially those of women) And no, I’m not being sexist, it’s just a fact, and the nature of the beast in certain aspects of the photography business. I myself have made gorgeous 30“ x 20” wraps of brides, (and some landscapes) which just pop with clarity, and sharpness from both my old 6mp fuji, or my newer (two/three year old) D700, and a properly exposed, and processed raw file.

Don’t get me wrong here. If you feel you need all the megapixles, and megawatts of a D4, or D800 and have the bucks for it go get it when it’s released. All I’m trying to say here is that megapixels DO NOT always equate to better images which is quite CONTRARY to all the marketing hype thrown at you by the camera makers. It’s the person behind the camera who creates the work. A better camera will make the process of attaining better images easier, with more keepers, and less post processing, but it will not replace plain, old, common sense, shot discipline, and artistic capabilities.
And don't even get me started about video on a pro dSLR (gag)…

Dories. Nikon D700, Nikon 24-70F2.8 @ 55mm. 1/500th, F8.0, ISO 800. And the ISO 800 was a MISTAKE! I must have been shooting something else just before this shot that required a higher ISO and forgot to turn it down. It happens. And in this case the excellent high ISO capabilities of my d700 saved my butt, and the image.

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There are 3 comments , add yours!
Chossid 9 years, 2 months ago

Fine shot and totally agree with you! BTW, where are you selling online?

9 years, 2 months ago Edited
G B 9 years, 3 months ago

J, I totally agree with what you are saying here. My first digital camera was only 8 megapixles, and it took excellent photos compared to my new camera which has 14 megapixels and takes average photos for me. I also agree that the art is in the eye of the beholder and how he/she decides how they want to translate what they are trying to convey.

I see nothing wrong with what you said about your friend softening up a woman's features in portrait photography, I just did a shoot not too long ago, and the woman specifically asked that I soften up her skin tone and even lighten it up some! The customer got what she wanted.

I applaud your hard work and your success in selling your fine prints! Btw, this is a beautiful shot...and at times I too forget to turn down the ISO and get really upset if I take a really good shot and have to toss it because I forgot to turn the ISO down! Best of luck in all your future endeavors my friend :-))

9 years, 3 months ago Edited
Rob Gant 9 years, 3 months ago

Cool shot J, i hear you im happy with my new rebel T3 and probably wouldnt change it for a long time after i upgraded from x500

9 years, 3 months ago Edited