Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Known By My Camera

I've been invited to do some beta testing again.

Over the summer, I was testing the latest photo-editing software from Corel, Paintshop Pro X4. I've been using Paintshop for a few years now, so beta-testing the latest installment was a lot of fun. I could play with the new features and provide feedback, some that was even incorporated into the final product. And some of my photos are even used in the product itself, to illustrate some of the features.

So yesterday, I was asked again to test another product. At this time, I'm not at liberty to say which product, but stay tuned.

Because the folks at Corel know the type of camera I use, I had been affectionately known as "Mr. D80." At the beginning of the summer, when I learned about this nickname, I laughed. Sure, I loved my Nikon. It's not a professional camera, but I'm not a professional photographer. At best, I'm a hobbyist. An amateur. I love photography, and I have fun taking photos.

The D80 was designed for people like me. At the time, the only other top-end model for amateurs was the D90, and I chose not to go for that model because I wasn't interested in having a video feature on a still camera, and I didn't want to pay for a feature that I didn't want.

My D80 has served me well. Sure, there was that time earlier this year when the circuit board blew on it. I was without my camera for more than a month and it cost more than $250 to fix. But it worked wonderfully up until then and it's been great ever since.

But I'm not married to my D80. I'm not committed for life. I would eventually like to upgrade. I've looked at the D7000 a couple of times, thinking that I might go for it when the price eventually drops.

If I did that, would I be known by the folks at Corel as "Mr. D7000"? I hope not.

The subject line for my invitation to participate in the next beta testing was Mr D80? At first, when I saw it, I smiled. And then I stopped. I thought about the nickname. And I knew that I was already bored with it.

The camera does not define me. It doesn't even define my photos. Over the months, as I've shot photos from my Nikon and my iPhone, I see that I can take decent shots with both. It's my eye that defines the composition, my thoughts that identify the subject, and the editing software that helps me bring my photos to life.

I'm not crazy about being called Mr. D80. How about "Ross"?


  1. Hey Ross! It is interesting what people attach significance to, and how nicknames happen. I am with you on this one, your photos are so much more than the tool that you use to take them. But then again I admire your pics, and had no idea what you shoot with til I read this :)

  2. Thanks, Krista.

    Yup, I'm a Nikon user. Before the digital age, I was a Minolta fan. My cameras have never defined me. Or my pictures.

  3. Actually, I am responsible for the label "Mr.D80". It was a small naming device that separated the photographer/tester from the fella I share my life with. No harm intended. :-)

    I am sooooo getting a new camera first.