Cameras and Photography Explained

This page points to all recent articles published on, and, and is updated as new articles appear (most recent on top). For articles from previous months, check the Articles Index Archive. 

INT Kenya Mara 2009 D90 00639

Does your image have a story? The story for this image is simple: "I'm hunting you". But here's an image with the same subjects taken a bit later that tells a different story:

INT Kenya Mara 2009 D90 00646

Now the story is "why is he walking by us?" 

I'm a big fan of story. If you can't name your photograph—I called the bottom one Just Passing By—you probably don't have a story. So here's a trick you can use in the field: get in the habit of naming each photograph you're about to make. If you can't identify the story (name), you're probably going to struggle with composition, among other things. That's because you have nothing helping you to make supporting decisions about the creative side of the photograph. If you can't see the story, viewers of your image won't, either. So: what story do you want to tell? Will your viewers immediately get that story?

Nikon has added another US$150 discount into the mix for the Z6 and Z7: they're now bundling the FTZ Adapter with the cameras where they were only offering a US$100 discount before. Thus, the Z6+FTZ price has gone from US$2250 initially, to US$2000, to US$1950, to now US$1800. That's basically a US$450 discount (and this site's exclusive advertiser throws in an XQD card and a bag [advertiser link]). The deal works the same way with the Z7, though the discount adds up to US$850 there [advertiser link]. I'll be updating my "New Nikon Pricing" article to reflect the change.

>>> This Week's Articles: 

May 24

Sony Reports Growth and Contraction. Sony still seems reluctant to share unit volume information with investors, but in their ongoing presentations to the financial community centered around the completion of their fiscal year, they've been sharing more information than before. Article on

May 23

Fujifilm GFX 100 announced.

May 20

Where Are We? (Part IV or V, I've Lost Count). For over a decade I've been writing the following about the currently-available digital cameras: "if you can't get good-looking prints at the maximum size a desktop printer can produce, it isn't the camera that's the problem." Article on

My Shortest Essay on the Camera Market Yet. In dealing with all the feedback from my article on the Brutal Quarter, I found myself responding with a simple truth. Article on

May I ask that you start your photographic-related shopping by clicking on any of the B&H links on this site, such as the following one. B&H is this site's exclusive advertiser. Starting a purchase at B&H from a link on this site helps support this site.

Some of you probably aren't aware that I've long had a dedicated B&H Landing Page [advertiser link] where the items in each of four different "gear bags" I use lives. We've just updated that page and the underlying pages, as well.


>>> Recent Articles: 

May 16

Nikon Z Firmware Update and Service Advisory. The 2.00 version of the Z6 and Z7 firmware appeared from Nikon today. Nikon also issued a Service Advisory for some Z6 and Z7 serial numbers to fix the sensor VR. Article on sansmirror.comAside: Many have asked me to comment about whether or not the firmware update was "enough." No, the 2.0 update doesn't address all the issues I and others have found with the Z's, but neither has Canon or Sony addressed all their problems, either. For me, a substantive update from Nikon is a good sign, and I hope that they continue to make additional substantive updates in the future.

May 14

The Brutal Quarter. Now that everyone has reported their detailed financial information we can see just how bad the January through March numbers were. Article on

May 13

Credit Where Credit is Due. We're now at a stage with the mirrorless market where we can better evaluate how various strategies have played out. I believe in giving credit where credit is due, so here we go. Article on

Software Alliances. Fujifilm users in the US can now get a free copy of Skylum Luminar by entering the serial number of a Fujifilm lens. Article on

Samyang introduced a new 45mm f/1.8 lens for Sony FE cameras.

May 9

Nikon's Full Frame Strategy. This is the time of year that most of the Japanese companies are doing "corporate" things: revealing fiscal year results, making management and structure changes, and outlining changes to short, medium, and long-term plans. Today Nikon reported on their medium term plan (they're in the middle of a three-stage process). Every Nikon user probably should take a gander at that document, as there are clear implications in it for photographers. Article on

Nikon Full Year Results. Nikon reported the same thing we've been seeing from the other camera companies: the January to March quarter was pretty miserable. Miserable enough that Nikon missed by 3% on revenue and profit on the already downgraded estimates they made not too long ago. Article on

May 8

Canon introduced the 85mm f/1.2L for the RF mount.

May 7

Hope versus Fear. It seems that society is always migrating toward two opposing expectations, and this dichotomy is even showing up in the photographic community: hope versus fear. Article on

May 3

New Other Discounts. The disastrous first quarter coupled with the usual desire to push gear during the second busiest time of the year for camera sales—Mother's Day through Graduation—has everyone introducing discounts. I've already outlined the Canon and Nikon mirrorless deals, here are the rest of the mirrorless camera makers. Article on

Thom's Preferred Sony APS-C Lens Set. Someone asked me recently which lenses they should get for their new Sony A6400 (besides the kit lens they got). That made me realize that I had recommended lens sets for the Nikon DX and FX cameras on, but haven't yet really built such things for all the mirrorless cameras here in the lens section. Today I'll tackle Sony APS-C (A5xxx, A6xxx bodies). I've add more mounts soon. Article on

April 29

Thom wades into the equivalence controversy:

Equivalence in a Nutshell. "Equivalence" still seems to be a topic that is misunderstood. Article on

The Problem with Near Equivalence. Lately I've been hearing a "partial equivalence" claim being repeated over and over by people who should know better. What I'm talking about usually comes up when someone tries to write about equivalence. What happens in these partial equivalence claims is that the poster ignores one or more factors that would create a truly equivalent image. Article on

April 28

The Giant Nikkor DSLR Lens Sale. Today NikonUSA announced savings on more than two dozen lenses. As always, I'm going to give you advice about how the new pricing should impact your decision making. This time, though, I'm going to go about that a little differently, and split my comments into three logical groupings of lenses: bargains, good value, and not so interesting. Article on

How Nikon's New Pricing Changes the DSLRs. Today NikonUSA announced new pricing on their DSLR lineup, as well as some additional instant rebates through the end of June. Some of these changes are big enough that we need to talk through how the price moves may change your outlook on the Nikon DSLR cameras. Article on

New Nikon Z Pricing (Thru June). Updated NikonUSA today announced instant savings on the Z series cameras: US$200 off the Z6 in any form (body only, filmmaker's kit, body+kit lens), US$600 off the Z7 in any form (body only, body+kit lens). The FTZ adapter is no longer included free, but there's a US$100 saving on it when purchased with a body. Article on

New Canon Mirrorless Pricing. Canon is also in the dealmaking mood. Here's what's happening in the Canon mirrorless world. Article on

All the previous articles for my sites can be found in the Articles Index.

text and images © 2019 Thom Hogan
portions Copyright 1999-2018 Thom Hogan-- All Rights Reserved
Follow us on Twitter: @bythom, hashtags #bythom, #sansmirror, #dslrbodies