As faithful followers on Facebook are well aware, I recently purchased a new “walk-around” camera. Only professional photographers have “walk-around” cameras. Everyone else just has a camera (or phone) but we pro’s feel the need to have a work camera and a camera for vacation, etc. Mainly because the work camera weighs 20 pounds and is the size of a small dog.

So I bought the Fuji X100S for everyday use and took it to New York recently (Check out the review of the Fuji X100S here). I really like having a camera that I can carry all the time. When people ask me to recommend a camera, I always say, “Buy the one you will carry. A great camera is no good if you leave it at home.”

Still, it’s tough for me because there are things I can’t do with the camera. I purchased a flash for it (arrives tomorrow) just so I could try and get better light. I’ll be attaching it with a sync cord so I can use it off-camera (don’t worry, pictures will be coming…). I tried oh so hard to not do it… tried to just stick with the small camera, no extra stuff… but I just can’t do it. I can’t stand to be in a situation where I know there’s a great photograph if I just had an off-camera light source. The minute you take a tool out of your toolbox you discover you really need that tool.

Which brings us to another thing I bought that I’m a little ashamed of but I have a valid excuse. I bought a selfie-pole. That’s right, I bought that pole people use to take pictures of themselves.

Hold on now… let me explain. I’m a professional photographer and I have hundreds of pictures of my family on vacation where I am not in the shot. I also have many pictures where I am in the shot but unfortunately, it’s a terrible shot because every time I hand my camera to a stranger to take my picture, they suddenly become idiots. It’s like they’ve never seen a picture in their life, let alone held a camera. I get my head cutoff, everyone crowded at the bottom, out-of-focus… you name it. Sadly, I stand a better chance of getting a good pic of me and the family by taking it myself with a pole than by letting someone else take it for me.

But it gets worse.

I have also found myself using Google Photo’s a lot for my images. When I’m out and about and take a picture that I want to send to Facebook, I do some quick cropping, etc, in Google Photos. It’s got all the pre-set filters that you see everywhere (made popular by Instagram) and we pro’s don’t like to use them on principle. We’re professional photographers…we won’t stoop to using these pedestrian effects on our images.

Except… sigh… some of them are kinda cool.

So, if you follow me on facebook (please do!) and you see a picture taken with a selfie pole with a plug-in effect and a sloppy border, don’t judge me too harshly. I’m still the talented professional, expensive giant camera using, Photoshop retouching, photographer that you know and love… I’m just flirting with the dark-side a little. On my day off.

Booray Self Portrait

Selfie-pole, pre-set drama effect and sloppy border all done in my phone.

Okay, okay… I did use Photoshop to remove the giant zit I have on my forehead. Sue me..