Compact system cameras are often referred to as mirrorless cameras because unlike DSLR cameras they don’t have a mirror to bounce light from the lens to the viewfinder. Because the mirror and pentaprism are missing from compact system cameras they can be made much smaller than DSLR’s. How often have you gone out and not wanted to lug your DSLR because it’s a bit bulky and then been disappointed because you wanted to take some good photos? We’ve all been there.
Everyone can take a photo, but a photographer has the skill set to create a great image in any situation and with any equipment.
How do they work?
DSLR cameras have an optical viewfinder which shows the view through the lens after it’s been reflected from the mirror and into the pentaprism. What the pentaprism does is flip the image so that it appears the right way round in the viewfinder and not flipped because of the mirror.
In a compact system camera the only barrier which can light the lens and the sensor is the shutter curtain, and this opens to reveal the sensor you can see a live view feed on the back of the camera. The barrier must be opened and closed quickly to take the shot.
Why are mirrorless cameras good for food photography?
While most of us will take photos in our kitchen, or at our own home sometimes inspiration strikes when we’re out and about, perhaps you’re at a friends cooking nachos and the cheese has melted perfectly. Or perhaps you’re having a BBQ and the sizzling meat just looks so appetising, sometimes having a lightweight easy to use camera is far simpler than lugging around your DSLR.
Because compact system cameras aren’t quite as quick and snappy as DSLR cameras you are forced to slow down a little bit and be more thoughtful with your shots. You may end up being more methodical about your compositions, whether it’s moving that strawberry across a little bit or changing the angle you’re shooting from.
With the electronic viewfinder in a mirrorless camera it opens up a whole world of possibilities as you’re pretty much looking at a processed image as it’s happening. You can see the exposure as you’re creating it and you’re able to review and alter things before you take your snap.
But remember the most important thing is to keep snapping and practicing. Why don’t you share some of your favourite snaps with us?