Some photographers prefer using a camera’s Live View mode to frame images on the rear LCD, instead of doing so through the viewfinder. It’s fine if that’s your reference, unless you experience the problem described in the video below. We’ll give you a hint: It has to do with your vision.
Mark Denney is a very respected landscape photographer and instructor who admits to being a “postprocessing nerd.” Unlike other tutorials that we’ve shared from him in the past, this one isn’t about shooting or image-editing techniques, but rather about whether it’s better to frame images using the viewfinder or with the rear LCD in Live View mode.
This episode was provoked by Denney’s recent trip to the eye doctor, when he learned that his vision has significantly declined. This new shouldn’t have come as a big surprise, because it’s been 15 years since the last time his eyes were checked. After all, our bodies change as we get older, right?
Nonetheless, Denney was a bit shocked. Or as he explains, based upon what he discovered, “I can say my good or perfect vision is something I’ve always taken for granted.” Unfortunately, when things go south, they sometimes do so gradually—and this can make changes in eyesight difficult to discern on your own.
Denney has been a Live View shooter for years, but his decline in nearsightedness has forced him to change the way he shoots. For this discussion he shares his experiences using an electronic viewfinder in comparison to Live View for landscape photography. It’s possible that you have issues with your eyes too, so pay close attention.
The lesson begins with an overview of the pros and cons of using Live View or the viewfinder, setting vision problems aside for a moment. One reason Denney has always preferred Live View is that “you don’t have the camera right up to your face,” therefore giving you “more situational awareness.”
This opinion runs somewhat contrary to conventional wisdom, that says pressing the camera to your face while using the viewfinder provides far greater stability than using the rear LCD while holding the camera further back. In any event, there are several benefits for shooting in Live View, just as there are for relying upon the viewfinder. And Denney does an admirable job of explaining what they are.
But returning to the real point of this episode, how does impaired eyesight factor into the equation? Denney explains all this from personal experience, and by the time you’re done watching you may want to have your eyes checked too.
There’s much more to learn about editing and shooting landscape photos on Denney’s instructional YouTube channel, so be sure to pay a visit when time permits.
And don’t miss the tutorial we posted recently from another pro, explaining the secrets to capturing sharp photographs with any autofocus camera.