Sunday, July 6, 2014

Think then Shoot: A Photographer's Pocket Notebook

A photographer's pocket notebook simple and straight forward made by photographer John Kossik.

With a page to enter your camera and film settings on one side and a grid-marked blank page on the other for notes, sketches, and whatever other details you need to document. All in a tidy 4"x 6" format. The camera and film settings page has enough entries for most film sizes on one sheet. Enough pages are included to document over 50 rolls of film!

Also included is a handy simple Exposure Guide Chart for those times when you leave the light meter in the car of just want a second opinion on just what the correct settings should be.

Back in 2004 Kossik reacquainted himself with photography after a number of “cameraless” years raising young children. “First with a Nikon D70 then a D300,” he says. “Thousands and thousands of shots in dimly lit gyms and family vacations allowed me to reestablish my relationship with shutter speed and aperture.”

“One day about a year ago I took my D70 into a small camera shop in the Seattle area to get the sensor repaired. Little did I know at the time that I was about to embark on a trip that would end in my D70 and D300 gathering dust. As I walked into this small, cramped shop, the 70-something owner could not resist showing me around. In his workshop he had drawers and drawers full of beautiful old cameras. He had so many that he noted that he had no space for all of them and had just tossed a number into the dumpster! He opened drawer upon drawer all filled with camera bodies of all brands laid out neatly one by one. Being a Nikon shooter when he got to the appropriate drawer two pristine FE reveled themselves. Of course the all black one I just had to pick up and eventually purchased on my way out. Catching the bug and wanting to try my hand at shooting some action shots on film, a few days later I called him asking that if he ever had an old Nikon F4 come through I would be greatly interested. He replied, “I have one now, its still in the original box!” Obviously that became mine also, I was hooked.”

“Longing for the “holy grail” of medium format my next purchase was a perennial RB67 Pro S. As he sold it to me the old guy grumbled, “I do not know why all these Pros are getting rid of these, they will regret it someday.” After shooting a few rolls on the RB67 I understood what he meant.”

“But shooting DSLRs all those years had made me lazy. I had become far too dependent on the Exif file data stored with the files on the camera. Roll after roll of film that I was now shooting I later was kicking myself for not recording even the most rudimentary exposure data from shot to shot. I tried using a simple lined pocket notebook but found that it was too cumbersome, staring at a blank sheet of paper initially, to use. I looked online in a number of places for something tailored to what I needed. There are a few out there, but none that I thought would suit my needs enough to make me continuously used.”

“Frustrated, I decided to simply create my own. In doing so I thought, “perhaps there are others that could use this?” The result is my book, “Think then Shoot: A Photographer’s Pocket Notebook” available from Amazon.”

More about the book can also be found at:

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