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Perspective / July 4, 2016

Bridge to an Unexplored World

I started my journey into the unexplored world of photography with a ‘bridge camera’, a camera that sits between a point-and-shoot and a DSLR camera. I was absolutely new to photography as a discipline, as an art form. (All I knew about it was there is a camera with a lens on it. When you press a button (shutter release), you capture a photo.) I had used a point-and-shoot camera before, but had never used a bridge camera or a DSLR. It was logical for me to invest less in camera gear to begin with. I was unsure whether I had it in me to be a photographer. But, at the same I didn’t want to start from level zero, hence the choice to invest in Fujifilm FinePix S3300. I had a pleasant experience of using my brother’s Fujifilm Finepix camera earlier. So, it was natural for me to buy this one.

The Bridge Camera Helped in Exploring the Unexplored World

  1. Leverage my experience of using a point-and-shoot camera. This gave me the confidence that I was not starting from scratch.
  2. Understand the basics of photography – aperture, ISO, shutter speed or exposure triangle, etc.
  3. The camera had operations quite similar to that of a DSLR. But, it did not require too much technical know-how of operating a DSLR. Quite a bit of those functions were sort of ‘ready-to-use’.
  4. Gave the freedom to explore different genres of photography. I did not have to worry about the technicalities – it allowed me to discover the photographer within.
  5. Work on my overall knowledge of photography and craft.

Another thing that I learnt using a bridge camera was how its capabilities were limited in comparison to a DSLR. For an instance, I realized that the camera could not take exposure longer than 8 seconds. Discovering such kind of shortcomings in features further helped in understanding techniques of taking different kind of photographs. This also helped become aware of my creative inclinations towards various genres of photography.

I continued using the Fujifilm camera for about 6 months. Then I reached the conclusion that I must graduate to a DSLR, and make the kind of photographs I envisioned. This exploratory process also brought clarity in terms of which genre of photography I wanted to pursue more. What specific features to look for in a DSLR when deciding to buy one. I really enjoyed using my bridge camera for it helped me discover the potential photographer in me. It allowed me to learn complex concepts and techniques without feeling overwhelmed. It helped me cross the bridge to the unexplored world of photography. The place that I call home for the creative in me.


Authored by Shivendra Lal

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