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Technisch

Niet beschikbaar in
July 2007

In June, VII Photo photographer Gary Knight travelled to Israel, Jordan and northern Iraq on assignment for Newsweek magazine. He used an EOS-1D Mark III throughout and talks to CPN about his experiences.

Gary Knight often works in the most difficult of environments – covering wars and the effects of conflict, inequality and injustice. He relies on equipment that is tough and reliable as he might only get a fleeting opportunity to capture an image.

Assignment background

Part of his assignment to the Middle East centred on the Christain diaspora. The picture above shows Lufieh Mitri al Haddad in her off-licence shop in Tulkarem in close to the wall that divides the Palestinian territories and Israel.
“Her four sons were born and raised a Christian and converted to Islam,” says Gary. “The Church in her home town of Tulkarem was recently burned to the ground by an angry mob after a perceived insult upon Islam by Pope Benedict.”

© Gary Knight

An image of a Muslim cleric taken during an interview where low distraction was important.

Favourite features

1) Sensor cleaning. “The biggest single advance for me is the sensor cleaning. I used to spend so much time re-touching images taken with dust on the chip. The zoom lenses tend to let more dust in. But with this camera haven’t had to re-touch one dust mark and that’s in the desert in temperatures of 45°C. So I save two to three hours work a night, even with a zoom.” 

© Gary Knight

2) Menu. “I also like the shorter menu, so don’t have to scroll through 20 options to format the card etc,” he says. “There aren’t many things I have to change, but to have them all instantly available is great.”

3) Battery power. “I didn’t charge the battery for two weeks and it was on all day, every day. I’m not a great one for viewing the pictures I’ve taken on the LCD, but I’d have had to charge the EOS-1D Mark II every three days or so. It’s less hassle and less for me to worry about. Often in hotels there might only be one socket and you end up having to juggle power for the computer, mobile phone and sat phone. The battery also feels a bit lighter.”

4) LCD. “The only time I might check images on the back of the camera is if I’m shooting at 1/8th or 1/4 of a second, and with Mark III, because of the bigger screen, I can see more detail,” says Gary.

5) File quality. “I don’t care about the number of megapixels I just care about the quality of the file and the files from Mark III are very nice, better than the 5D. In fact, I think this is the best quality file that Canon has produced. It’s sharp and it looks a little crisper than before. In the RAW file, I really don’t have to do much work on the images afterwards. I just upload them, adjust the white balance and that’s more or less it before I send them to the client. I decent night’s sleep is very important to me in my work!”

Downsides

1) In an ideal world, Gary would love to see the capability of the EOS-1D Mark III in a camera the size of an EOS 5D. This would really help photojournalists, he says, who need to shoot in quite sensitive situations where a large camera can unnerve the subject or attract unwanted attention. A sense of intimacy from an image is as important to a war photographer as it is a wedding photographer, he says.

2) Gary is less concerned about the speed of the EOS-1D Mark III (10 frames a second). He says that this would be more important for a sports or wildlife photographer.

Conclusion

“This camera just works.” 

 

Biografie: Gary Knight

Gary  Knight

British photographer Gary Knight was one of the co-founders and the principle architect of the VII Photo agency. He is the founder and Director of the Program for Narrative & Documentary Practice at Tufts University in the USA, a Trustee of the Frontline Club in London, co-founder and Board member of the GroundTruth Foundation in the USA, two time Chair and twice jury member of the World Press Photo Award and co founder of the Angkor Photography Festival in Cambodia. He is an award winning photographer and formerly a contract photographer for Newsweek Magazine. His work has been published and exhibited in major international media since 1988 (the year he bought his first Canon camera) and is held in private and institutional collections worldwide.