Pro photographer uses $20 camera to prove it’s not the gear that makes a photo great

There is no denying that quality camera gear can capture incredible photographs. But it’s the person behind the camera that truly makes or breaks what an image ultimately becomes.

To prove this, DigitalRev has shared the latest video in its clever series titled “Pro Photographer, Cheap Camera.” In this episode, photographer Matt Usher is given an old Nikon CoolPix 995 and asked to capture the best possible images he can.

For context, a Nikon CoolPix 995 is 16 years old, has a three megapixel sensor, and offers a full frame equivalent focal range between 36–152mm. It’s a far cry from even the cheapest of DSLRs available nowadays.

Despite the obvious limitations of the camera, Usher takes it upon himself to capture the best images possible.

As explained throughout the video and seen from the resulting photographs, it’s Usher’s vision that makes the resulting images what they are. By figuring out the images and understanding the weaknesses of the camera, Usher knows what he can expect to get from the camera.

With this knowledge, he plans his post-production workflow before ever pressing the shutter, knowing exactly how he needs to frame and expose the photographs to get the most from the camera. For all but a few of the images, this meant capturing multiple exposures over the entire scene to stitch together as a panorama in Photoshop.

By using multiple exposures and varied subject matter, Usher was able to pull multiple images together that are incredible considering the $20 camera he was working with.

This was just for show, but it’s an important reminder that it takes vision, not just gear, to capture incredible photographs. You must know what it is you want to capture before the shutter is ever pressed. Make the most of the gear you have and push it to its limits.

Product Review

With outstanding image quality, the ‘basic’ Sony A7 III excels in every way

Replacing the four-year-old A7 II as the new entry-level model in Sony's full-frame line, the A7 III is an impressively capable camera that gives more expensive models a run for their money.
Mobile

How to take great photos with the Pixel 3, the best camera phone around

You’ve scored yourself a new Google Pixel 3 or Pixel 3 XL, and you want to take advantage of that incredible camera. We’ve got everything you need to know right here about how to snap the best photos with your Pixel 3.
Product Review

Fewer pixels, better camera? The Nikon Z6 shows the beauty of restraint

The Nikon Z6 is the sibling to the new mirrorless Z7 -- but for some photographers, the cheaper Z6 may be the better option. Read where the $2,000 camera beats the $3,400 one (and where it doesn’t) in our Nikon Z6 review.
Gaming

These are the best Xbox One games available right now

More than four years into its life span, Microsoft's latest console is finally coming into its own. From 'Cuphead' to 'Halo 5,' the best Xbox One games offer something for everyone.
Photography

Alpha Female: Sony awards five women grants to support artisan diversity

Women can face several challenges in launching a photography career -- Sony's latest initiative aims to help propel women in the industry forward. Sony recently announced the winners of the Alpha Female program.
Emerging Tech

The best drone photos from around the world

Most of today's drones come equipped with high-end cameras, which are quickly revolutionizing the world of aerial photography as we know it. Here are some of the best drone photos from around the world.
Social Media

Build a wish list and shop videos with Instagram’s latest shopping update

Eyeing a product on Instagram? Now there are more ways to shop from the social network. Instagram just rolled out options to save products in a collection as users can also now shop from videos.
Photography

See the National Forests like never before in these awe-inspiring drone videos

What's the difference between a National Park and a National Forest? Drones. With no ban on drones in National Forests -- at least, not yet -- filmmakers have a way to capture the immensity of these locations with stunning results.
Social Media

Addicted to Instagram? Its new ‘activity dashboard’ is here to help

Ever get that nagging feeling you're spending too much time on Instagram? Well, a new "activity dashboard" has a bunch of features designed to help you better control how you use the addictive photo-sharing app.
Photography

Photography news: Best spot for fall photos, new firmware from Fuji and Nikon

Where's the best spot to take fall photos? Michigan, according to social media and a Nikon contest. The results and more in this week's photography news, including significant firmware updates for the Fujifilm X-T3, X-H1, and GFX 50S.
Emerging Tech

DJI Mavic 2 Pro vs Mavic 2 Zoom: What’s the real difference?

DJI's Mavic 2 series drones are ready to fly -- but which one is right for you? The Mavic 2 Pro and Mavic 2 Zoom are nearly identical save for their cameras. Here's what you need to know about these powerful new UAVs.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: A.I. selfie drones, ‘invisible’ wireless chargers

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!
Deals

Cyber Monday 2018: When it takes place and where to find the best deals

Cyber Monday is still a ways off, but it's never too early to start planning ahead. With so many different deals to choose from during one of the biggest shopping holidays of the year, going in with a little know-how makes all the…