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Inappropriate - make that stupid - use of flash at events

 
 
Anthony Buckland
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      07-27-2004
Watching the Democratic Convention yesterday, I watched the usual
scattering of flashes from people hoping to catch a candlelit scene
with flash photography. But I have to admit this was nothing to the
_thousands_ of flashes at nightime Olympic celebrations.

What is it with people? Does collective insanity take over the minds
of people whose camera flash has a range of maybe five metres and
who would in any case totally wash out the play of light and color
that makes the event what it is? I can understand a few people at
an event having new cameras and no clue about how to switch off
the flash or even a clue that flash exists. But people who lay out
hundreds of dollars to attend an event and more hundreds on
expensive cameras presumably have a few functioning
neurons; yet a big fraction of them, not some tiny dumb portion,
cannonade away on pictures that will be totally useless.

This goes way back in my life, to over half a century ago before
even the flash cube had been invented, and taking a flash picture
required deliberate setting up and using accessories that only the
relatively well-off owned -- yet I watched people trying to take
flash pictures, from the Canadian side of course, of the illumination
in color of Niagara Falls.

 
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Zebedee
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Posts: n/a
 
      07-27-2004

"Anthony Buckland" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed)...
> Watching the Democratic Convention yesterday, I watched the usual
> scattering of flashes from people hoping to catch a candlelit scene
> with flash photography. But I have to admit this was nothing to the
> _thousands_ of flashes at nightime Olympic celebrations.
>
> What is it with people? Does collective insanity take over the minds
> of people whose camera flash has a range of maybe five metres and
> who would in any case totally wash out the play of light and color
> that makes the event what it is? I can understand a few people at
> an event having new cameras and no clue about how to switch off
> the flash or even a clue that flash exists. But people who lay out
> hundreds of dollars to attend an event and more hundreds on
> expensive cameras presumably have a few functioning
> neurons; yet a big fraction of them, not some tiny dumb portion,
> cannonade away on pictures that will be totally useless.
>
> This goes way back in my life, to over half a century ago before
> even the flash cube had been invented, and taking a flash picture
> required deliberate setting up and using accessories that only the
> relatively well-off owned -- yet I watched people trying to take
> flash pictures, from the Canadian side of course, of the illumination
> in color of Niagara Falls.


Lol. I've seen that too.

I think there must be a lot of thick people around who use compact cameras.

--
Yours

Zebedee

(Claiming asylum in an attempt
to escape paying his debts to
Dougal and Florence)



 
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NoNameAtAll
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      07-27-2004
Many cameras do not have an option to turn off the flash. And even for cameras
that do have such an option, many owners don't know it exists or don't know how
to operate it.
 
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Charles Jones
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      07-27-2004
In article <(E-Mail Removed)>, http://www.velocityreviews.com/forums/(E-Mail Removed) says...
> What is it with people? Does collective insanity take over the minds
> of people


Sorry, the tense in this sentence is wrong. Collective insanity *has*
taken over ..."

--
Charles Jones
(E-Mail Removed)
Loveland, Colorado, USA
ICQ: 29610755
AIM: LovelandCharles
 
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Doug Kanter
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Posts: n/a
 
      07-27-2004
A friend of mine used to work for one of the original one-hour photo places
here in my city. I'm sure was totally correct when he said that most casual
picture takers were lucky if 3 out of 24 exposures was worth printing.
People have very low expectations. And, NOBODY reads instructions.

"Anthony Buckland" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed)...
> Watching the Democratic Convention yesterday, I watched the usual
> scattering of flashes from people hoping to catch a candlelit scene
> with flash photography. But I have to admit this was nothing to the
> _thousands_ of flashes at nightime Olympic celebrations.
>
> What is it with people? Does collective insanity take over the minds
> of people whose camera flash has a range of maybe five metres and
> who would in any case totally wash out the play of light and color
> that makes the event what it is? I can understand a few people at
> an event having new cameras and no clue about how to switch off
> the flash or even a clue that flash exists. But people who lay out
> hundreds of dollars to attend an event and more hundreds on
> expensive cameras presumably have a few functioning
> neurons; yet a big fraction of them, not some tiny dumb portion,
> cannonade away on pictures that will be totally useless.
>
> This goes way back in my life, to over half a century ago before
> even the flash cube had been invented, and taking a flash picture
> required deliberate setting up and using accessories that only the
> relatively well-off owned -- yet I watched people trying to take
> flash pictures, from the Canadian side of course, of the illumination
> in color of Niagara Falls.
>



 
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Al Denelsbeck
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Posts: n/a
 
      07-27-2004
(E-Mail Removed)ntiSpam (NoNameAtAll) wrote in
news:(E-Mail Removed):

> Many cameras do not have an option to turn off the flash. And even for
> cameras that do have such an option, many owners don't know it exists
> or don't know how to operate it.


I would agree. And it doesn't really matter how much money people
might have shelled out for the camera - in some cases, they shelled it out
because they thought it would effectively keep them from having to learn
anything about how the camera works.

In dim situations, many cameras or modes force the flash, 'knowing'
there is too little light for a decent exposure. In others, the camera will
drag the shutter to get the exposure, unless you activate the flash to
boost shutter to flash sync speeds.

And you never know - maybe they were simply trying to shoot down the
blouse of the woman below them in the stands...


- Al.

--
To reply, insert dash in address to separate G and I in the domain
 
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Gene Palmiter
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Posts: n/a
 
      07-27-2004
Some cameras force the flash...as mentioned....others need the flash set so
that shutter speeds slow down....as mentioned....and who cares....I like
seeing all the flashes...nobody has cigarette lighters anymore....this is a
good replacement.


"Anthony Buckland" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed)...
> Watching the Democratic Convention yesterday, I watched the usual
> scattering of flashes from people hoping to catch a candlelit scene
> with flash photography. But I have to admit this was nothing to the
> _thousands_ of flashes at nightime Olympic celebrations.
>
> What is it with people? Does collective insanity take over the minds
> of people whose camera flash has a range of maybe five metres and
> who would in any case totally wash out the play of light and color
> that makes the event what it is? I can understand a few people at
> an event having new cameras and no clue about how to switch off
> the flash or even a clue that flash exists. But people who lay out
> hundreds of dollars to attend an event and more hundreds on
> expensive cameras presumably have a few functioning
> neurons; yet a big fraction of them, not some tiny dumb portion,
> cannonade away on pictures that will be totally useless.
>
> This goes way back in my life, to over half a century ago before
> even the flash cube had been invented, and taking a flash picture
> required deliberate setting up and using accessories that only the
> relatively well-off owned -- yet I watched people trying to take
> flash pictures, from the Canadian side of course, of the illumination
> in color of Niagara Falls.
>



 
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Dave Martindale
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Posts: n/a
 
      07-27-2004
Anthony Buckland <(E-Mail Removed)> writes:

>But people who lay out
>hundreds of dollars to attend an event and more hundreds on
>expensive cameras presumably have a few functioning
>neurons;


Why would you assume this?

More specifically, the fact that they have the money to buy the camera
probably does indicate a certain amount of intelligence. But few people
apply any of that intelligence to learning about photography.

This isn't new either. I can remember taking pictures at awards
ceremonies in high school 30 years ago. I was shooting the event from
off to one side using a SLR with a telephoto, fairly fast B&W film, and
a large "potato masher" flash, which I knew would work at that distance.
Also, I was using a moderate shutter speed and a tripod, so the stage
lights added significant illumination. But there would be plenty of
parents popping up in the audience with their point&shoot film cameras,
including wide angle lens and a flash with a range of about 10 feet with
colour film. They had no hope of a useful photo from that position. If
any of them got near me, I told them to walk up right to the edge of the
stage and shoot from there. At least the flash would do something, and
their beloved son or daughter would be large enough in the frame to
recognize their face.

Dave
 
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Roland Karlsson
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Posts: n/a
 
      07-27-2004
(E-Mail Removed)ntiSpam (NoNameAtAll) wrote in
news:(E-Mail Removed):

> Many cameras do not have an option to turn off the flash.


That I have a hard time to beleive.

> And even for
> cameras that do have such an option, many owners don't know it exists
> or don't know how to operate it.


So - why do their neorons not start working the first
time they see the flash? Maybe this thing uses up my
battery - maybe it is possible to turn off?


/Roland
 
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Ken Weitzel
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Posts: n/a
 
      07-27-2004


Anthony Buckland wrote:
> Watching the Democratic Convention yesterday, I watched the usual
> scattering of flashes from people hoping to catch a candlelit scene
> with flash photography. But I have to admit this was nothing to the
> _thousands_ of flashes at nightime Olympic celebrations.
>
> What is it with people? Does collective insanity take over the minds
> of people whose camera flash has a range of maybe five metres and
> who would in any case totally wash out the play of light and color
> that makes the event what it is? I can understand a few people at
> an event having new cameras and no clue about how to switch off
> the flash or even a clue that flash exists. But people who lay out
> hundreds of dollars to attend an event and more hundreds on
> expensive cameras presumably have a few functioning
> neurons; yet a big fraction of them, not some tiny dumb portion,
> cannonade away on pictures that will be totally useless.
>
> This goes way back in my life, to over half a century ago before
> even the flash cube had been invented, and taking a flash picture
> required deliberate setting up and using accessories that only the
> relatively well-off owned -- yet I watched people trying to take
> flash pictures, from the Canadian side of course, of the illumination
> in color of Niagara Falls.



Hi...

Doesn't everybody know that to light up the canadian side of
Niagara Falls you have to go back even further than flash
bulbs - you need one of those little metal trays of flash
powder

Reminds me of a story from long ago that might be worth
a chuckle...

Friend went to a hockey game with one of his friends.
His friend had a new outfit, really top notch for its
day. He took a few pictures at the game (flash, of course
but returned the whole kit and kaboodle to Eaton's the next
day.

Angry. They'd sold him the wrong flash. They'd sold him
one that went with the camera the fellow behind him had.
Must have. Because every time the fellow sitting behind
took a picture the flash on his camera went off.

Take care.

Ken

 
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