A Week with Point-and-Shoot Camera : Canon PowerShot s100

Band Stand
Band Stand, Mumbai. 2012. © Nishant Ratnakar

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In one of my earlier posts, I had mentioned how I had inclined to Mobile Phone cameras for personal photography. Over a period of time these tiny devices have undergone as many advancements as the beast – Digital SLR camera –  has undergone. Technology has been a great leveler in the field of photography. Today, the camera and the craft have both been democratized. Entry level barriers to owning a D-SLR camera don’t really exist anymore. There seems to be a D-SLR camera available to suit everyone’s budget. I constantly get queries like ‘suggest me a good D-SLR please’. In the D-SLR euphoria that has gripped everyone, it is easy to forget that compact digital cameras or commonly known as Point-and-Shoot Digicams, have also undergone advancements like the mobile Phone Cameras.

I always ask people to give a thought to investing on a good Point-and-Shoot camera instead of going for an entry-level D-SLR. Sometimes, Point-and-Shoot fits the need of the buyer. Especially, if one wants to do a lot of travel or street photography, then these lightweight cameras can be of great advantage.

I have stopped carrying my Canon EOS 5D Mark2 on travels unless there is a professional assignment in it. My personal trips are a break from regular work. I prefer to travel light-weight with as little luggage as possible. I am a sucker for stories and stories-telling images. It is an instinct to reach out for a camera and photograph a frame that tells a story to me. Till recently, mobile phone cameras had been a companion during my journeys. But, then I decided to invest on more horse power in tiny cameras. I bought a Canon PowerShot s100 Point-and-Shoot digital camera.

I think the popular term Point-and-shoot is kind of misnomer today. Canon s100 and a lot of other compact cameras of the day have most of the features of Digital SLR cameras. Complete manual controls, wider apertures, faster shooting speeds, HD video, on-camera filters, RAW mode, and so on, are packed into s100 and cameras in its league. It must be noted that I bought s100 almost a year after its official release. In other words, a lot of newer compact cameras have more advanced features than s100. Exciting feature missing in s100 but available in newer compact cameras is the feature of inter-changeable lenses. But, with a zoom lens from 24mm to 120mm focal lengths (35mm camera equivalent) s100 suited most of my requirements for travel and street photography.

So, I decided to put it to field test. I gifted this to myself in advance as my 30th birthday present. It was the last week of my twenties and circumstances led me to travel to Mumbai city as a last-minute plan and spend the week there with my fiancée. So, in her company I welcomed my thirties. And off-course I also bid farewell to an eventful decade of my life – my dear twenties. No regrets from it. I cherish every moment of it.

My s100 traveled along with me to Mumbai and back, as I documented the situations that spoke to me during the last week of my twenties. I have present here some of the images I made during the trip on this camera. This in no way is any definitive or comprehensive visual guide to Mumbai city. The city is vast and has countless stories to tell and places to visit. This is a snapshot of my life in relation to the people and places I visited over a week.

Goodbye twenties. Hello thirties!

Dear life, bring on the roller coaster. I am ready for another uncertain ride.

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Nishant Ratnakar
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By Nishant Ratnakar

Nishant is a Bangalore, India based Wedding, Portrait & Editorial Photographer. He is available for assignments across India. He also conducts photography workshops and offers personal photography mentorship.

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