This post is something a little bit different; kind of factual but mostly a plea for help! After beginning my Diploma in Professional Interior Design and deciding to pursue a further foundation degree in Interior Design I have come to the conclusion that I need to bite the financial bullet and buy a good camera. With a final goal of a career doing interior styling or working for an interior magazine, blog or website I want to start building a basic portfolio of any work I do, to improve the quality of my own images for North Leads to Home, because nice cameras take pretty pictures, (and because I stupidly lost my other basic point-and-shoot camera) I’m able to justify it to myself.. just about.
So it has come to pass that I’m sacrificing a ticket to a festival this summer and instead investing £200-300 on a reasonably good quality camera with manual focus and the option to buy extra lenses if I can afford it at a later date. The problem is: I know NOTHING about cameras. DSLR or a compact system camera? How many megapixels? Do any of the flashy features matter?
The current top DSLR contender is the Nikon D3100. This camera is really at the top of my price range as it comes in at over £300 including the lens, but it is an attractive option if I decide to go for a DSLR. Nikon is a brand well known for delivering quality, ad my cousin’s Nikon has withstood the test of time and still takes amazing pictures several years on. The D3100 has a generous 14.2 megapixels and all sorts of flashy in-camera editing features on paper this camera looks awesome. The question is, will I ever be able to use it?! I’m a total novice at photography and ease of use with a camera is a must. Obviously there will be a lot of learning to do anyway as I’m learning to use a DSLR for the first time, but if this camera makes it extra complicated I don’t want to end up taking awful photos forever! As with most DSLRs this camera is also pretty chunky compared to a compact system camera, and an especially large jump from the skinny little Canon I’m used to.
The Olympus E-PM1 is my other realistic option. As a compact system camera it’s cheaper than the Nikon D3100, coming in at just over £200 including a lens. Because the Olympus is slightly cheaper, it has 12.3 megapixels but I still think that would suit me fine as the photos will never be blown up to be absolutely huge and its a compromise I’m willing to make to save money. Honestly, I’m attracted to the smaller size and lower price, but I don’t know enough about cameras to make a proper decision!
I thought I’d include a sample image from each camera, because I think seeing the quality of image produced from a camera before you buy it is one of the most important bits for me.
Nikon D3100 (found here)Olympus E-PM1 (found here)
So after that ramble, if anyone has any advice for me in my dilemma then please let me know!