Wednesday, May 18, 2011

photography geekdom--bring it on!

Tonight, I found out how many times I've clicked the shutter on my camera. And it's a lot: my baby (that's what I call my camera these days--it really is my baby, even though I've started to outgrow it) has taken 10,497 photos in three-and-a-half years. Yes, really. For the first year or so I subscribed to a "more-is-better" philosophy (said philosophy dates from the moment I got my first digital camera--a Nikon CoolPix 995--in '03), and was only really happy if I came back from a shoot with about a hundred photos on my card. Now, I put a lot more thought into every photo--and I'm even more careful if film is involved.

I have to admit, I'm both surprised and not about that number: I hadn't kept track, but really, my cam's a trouper. It's put up with shot after shot after shot, courses, college--you name it (though I've treated it well).

And Olympus is dang sneaky to boot: it's almost impossible to get info about the life expectancy for the Evolt E-510 (as I found out when I was doing a take-home quiz on my camera for Film and Darkroom Techniques last Fall), and the number didn't show up when I looked at the file info for my most recent shot in Photoshop CS4. Tom also looked at the photo's info in CS3, and he couldn't find anything. Then he took the photo and uploaded it to a website that goes into the EXIF data with a fine-tooth comb, and spits out more info about the photo than you'll ever need--and that didn't give the number.

By the way, all camera companies (Olympus, Pentax, Nikon, Canon, etc.) are secretive/sneaky about the life-expectancy of their cameras, but usually the number of the photo will show up in the EXIF info in Photoshop (if it's the original file--copying and pasting strips photos of a lot of their metadata). Back to the story.

Tom finally found a video on YouTube telling you how to go into your Olympus camera and retrieve The Number. Jackpot! Cue extreme laughter and thoughts of, "oh, my God, I can't believe what I'm seeing."

Also interesting: shutter life for different cameras, including mine.

PS: If I sound like a total photography geek, I'll take it as a compliment.

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