We all have some things in our bucket list; be it the 12 pieces of sweet and fattening macaroon that you always dreamt of swallowing, or that iPad air that you can hide behind a pencil (because no one will be productive with an iPad thicker than pencil), a list of things to buy are good pushing forces behind the actions we take, such as working hard, taking on a second job, invest your money to afford the things you want, or sneak into your parents’ bedroom in the dark to….okay, let me stop here.
I used to have a DSLR in my bucket list, because that was one of the coolest shit I’ve ever wanted. Picture walking around with a strap around your neck and a camera in your hands, and capturing all the tears and laughter you witness on the streets. It’s a great way to eternalise something visually and keep it for as long as you want. I mean, ex-girlfriends are hot, aren’t they? (I’m so going to get my knees bruised from kneeling tonight)
I couldn’t afford a digital cam, not to mention DSLR when they were selling hot like pancakes. Yes, they’re still selling hot, but I realized I had lost the urge to grab one before running to the counter, throw my card at the cashier and went, “I’m buying this!”.
Oh, and stick out my tongue going “ney ney ney ney neeeeeey!” before shaking my butt and walk off like a man who just got his first blowjob.
All because of camera phones.
I thought, why would I need a DSLR, or even digital camera, when my Nokia 7250 at that time could give me a .jpg file that I could recognize to be a photo? I wasn’t someone who was into pixels and zooming, so in my world, a camera that could snap something colourful in .jpg format was good enough. As camera phones fast became common, and the pixels were going from 1.2mp to 5mp, then 8mp to 13mp (for my Samsung Note 3), I couldn’t convince myself that a DSLR would be an option to consider, considering my usage of it would solely be about capturing photos of places that I could go, “Hey! That’s where I had my first orgasm!” when I scrolled through my computer in the middle of the night.
But everything changed this morning.
While I was on my way to work, I saw things that I thought would be great if I had a DSLR in my hands. Let’s be honest: in this era of camera phones, there are at least one in almost all pockets/purses on the streets; even digging your nose or having a hole in your shirt exposes you to the lenses of any random person who’ll be interested in sharing that scene in his or her web space. Facebook is a name that can sound scary at times.
This morning, I wanted to capture a view that I thought would be great to share, but I held back because the only camera I had with me was my phone.
#1 No One Gives a Fuck
The scene I saw this morning was a road with a machine called cold planer in the middle of a junction. For those who might not know what is a cold planer, here’s a video of it at work:
So what I saw this morning was like this, illustrated through my good drawing hands (read: Photoshop):
The sights of pedestrians getting buried alive while walking under that damn thing was a little real in my head, and I couldn’t help it. I thought it’d be fun to snap a photo of it with pedestrians walking underneath and upload the photo to my Facebook with the comment: “I’ve an urge to switch on that thing!”
But wait, there were people walking under that disguised Decepticon. My public morality told me that I couldn’t just use my 13mp camera phone as I wished.
Here’s the funny thing that I noticed: People worry when they see someone taking photo using a camera phone, but no one gives a damn to a DSLR with its lens pointing at them. Because nothing is going to go viral with DSLR.
#2 You Will Get the Respect You’ve Always Hoped to Get from the Locals
Wear a hat – which is something an ordinary local in Singapore will not – and a pair of gangster shades with the DSLR hanging around your neck, and you’ll be protected by the ever-powerful Aura of The Tourists.
Open your mouth and go, “Sorrr-li. I want take fotor, you very pretty. Can I?” with a little accent that no one understand and wave your DSLR proudly in front of the lady who just showed you her cleavage with her low-front dress, and you’ll have another photo to add to your collection that comes with your acting. Some might even pose for you.
#3 It’s An Expensive Hobby
I’m not sure how much it costs to own a DSLR back in your country, but here, we have to look at a figure anywhere above 500 bucks. For the sake of comparison, here’s how it is like: The average wage of a white-collar worker here is around $2500 for those not born with silver spoon. So we’re talking about 25% monthly salary of an average white-collar fresh graduate to buy that cool stuff (25%, because the initial 20% would be collected by our Government for savings, and cash take home would be only $2000).
I have not touched on the dry cabinet for storage and the prices of different lenses for the-hell-I-know purposes. In a nutshell, it’s a hobby that can be pretty expensive.
Imagine going on a gathering with a DSLR, and when asked, reply with, “Oh, yeah I bought this model for 1000 bucks, excluding the lenses that I didn’t bring along because I haven’t figured out how to use it yet. Just know that it’s a hobby that I am willing to part money for.”
#4 You can take beautiful photos with it
I know this shouldn’t be number 4 in the list, but I don’t care.
Now, unless you travel often, views of the place you live in are usually not beautiful because you’ve been seeing them for as long as your eyeballs are in your eye sockets.
DSLRs are good gadgets that you can use to capture photos of places that you think are beautiful, and when I say beautiful, I mean making those dull looking areas beautiful using the expensive camera that you are holding on while you wear the hat on your head.
#5 You Can Focus
Again, I’m not a guy with a DSLR, so I can’t comment (yet) . But the thing that makes me like DSLR photos is the ability to focus on a point, and blurring everything that doesn’t matter in the background, like this:
Because everything looks professional with blurry background.
#6 You Can Make A Video With A DSLR
I didn’t know that it was possible, until I saw the videos my friends made with them. I can’t show you how it’s done – again, I’m not a DSLR owner yet – but I can guide you to one of the videos shot using a…I’m not sure what’s the model.
With so many reasons to buy a DSLR, what are you waiting for*?
*Andy Lawson is not responsible for stupid impulsive decisions made from the reading of this post.
Andy Lawson is the average man on the street that you’ll not even trouble yourself looking at him if he passes by you. He’s sensitive to bullshit, and he hates mediocrity in most people.
He is the author of his self-published book: Facts and Fiction of Fengshui: Facts that Masters are NOT Telling You.
He doesn’t have Facebook or Twitter, because he hates to be associated with people who tend to be passive-aggressive online, but he does have a very limited set of vocabularies, terrible grammar, a twisted mind that makes himself God in his own twisted world and an ability to communicate with people who wish to be his friend.