Closing The Shutter On Digital Cameras

September 16, 2014

During Apple’s recent event, Tim Cook gave a nod to the traditional point-and-shoot camera — insofar as to say it was dead. And let’s be honest: He’s right.

I think back to my current digital camera – purchased approximately eight years ago – and remember the agony over selecting the right one. It had to have at least five megapixels and an LCD screen. That’s right, five megapixels. In the end, the Canon PowerShot caught my eye and it was love at first sight. The sleek, slim silver powerhouse boasted  six megapixels, 3X Optic Zoom, a 2.5-inch LCD screen, widescreen shooting and a print/share button. I was in heaven. My camera accompanied me to college parties, trips to the zoo, and even survived an ill-fated fall in a London nightclub. We were attached at the wrist – quite literally – and I thought I would never stray.

That lasted until I got my first iPhone in 2008. Suddenly my purse became lighter and I saw the digital camera for what it was: a ball and chain. No longer were the days when I needed to be connected to a computer, tied to an SD card or forced to share photos via printing or email. My duck-face selfies could be taken and texted to friends, shared instantly to Facebook or deleted immediately… and all on my trusty cell phone.

Six years later, my point-and-shoot camera still collects dust in a drawer with spare USB cords and camera cases. The modern cell phone far surpasses its archaic offerings. Most phones, including my Samsung, offer cameras with at least eight megapixels and specs that would rival an entry-level DSLR camera. Add photo editing apps like VSCOcam and Snapseed and – voila! – your amateur photos suddenly rival the professionals… and all on the same device your using to talk, text, email and stay connected with the rest of the world.

There are – of course – exceptions to the rule. GoPro offers adventure enthusiasts a camera that captures amazing video and photos and is impervious to the elements. Its hardiness is a critical factor for those who want their camera to abide by the “word hard, play hard” rule of thumb. But for those who want to capture those everyday moments – your child’s first day of kindergarten, the amazing jacket you just scored, or what’s for dinner – a cell phone camera and photo editing app will do just fine.

And the evidence doesn’t lie.

Following are photos from my recent adventure on former Rockefeller property in Fort Bragg, N.C.. The photo conditions were less than ideal: low light, drizzling and hazy, but I was confident a pass through VSCOcam would leave with photos ripe for the Instagram picking. Take a look for yourself, and tell me if you’d rather be armed with the point-and-shoot from cameras past.