Photography has become as big a part of blogging as the written word. The focus has evolved from wacking up a hastily tacken smartphone image, to investing hundreds of pounds in equipment and spending hours editing those shots so they look ‘magazine’ standard. I don’t have any training whatsoever, but over the years I’ve honed my own skillset to a standard I’m happy to upload to this site on a daily basis – with the little help of a few tools. Although I started with a Nikon DSLR and cherished it for a good couple of years, twelve months ago I was lucky enough to be given the Olympus Pen and I haven’t looked back. It’s undoubtedly the blogging camera of choice (with the majority of your favourite bloggers and vloggers using it to create everything from their Instagram shots to video content,) and the reason is clear – it’s the best camera I’ve ever used. Over the last year my love for this little gem has only expanded, dropping my previously much-loved but bulky Nikon almost completely in favour of it’s handy features and awesome image quality.
Although the Pen has too many great features to mention, here are my five favourite – and why they make this camera a worthwhile investment for bloggers and photography enthusiasts alike.
1. Built-In WIFI
The best thing by far about this gadget is the fact that it creates its
own WiFi hotspot, which can be paired with your smartphone and used to
import images using the Olympus app. That means you can snap
an incredible picture on your camera and post it directly to Instagram
or Twitter within seconds, removing the need for dodgy iPhone angles or
pixelated images. This is the feature I use the most, choosing to take most of my Instagram shots on the camera and import them for upload; it minimises the editing process and ensures well-lit and quality pictures.
2. Flip-Down Screen
If you’re a fan of selfies then the flip down screen makes them even
easier to perfect. The whole screen flips down beneath the camera
(rather than to the side) to ensure your eye level is as close to the
camera lens as possible. Rather than having to guess what pictures
you’re taking, the flip-screen ensures you can take the snap you want
without the fuss. Unlike a smartphone which can easily pixelate a selfie, the Olympus Pen retains the photograph quality while still being as easy to whip out as your iPhone.
3. Practical Filters
Including fourteen ‘art’ filters and nine ‘scene’ effects that help
enhance your photos, add a filter or focus on one particular tone, it’s
so easy to create images that look amazing. I love the ‘candle’ effect
that’s brilliant for taking snaps in low light, as well as the ‘fireworks’ setting which creates awesome shots of sparklers and lights. There’s even the
functionality to focus on only one colour and turn the rest of the image
black and white, turning the spotlight onto one element in particular.
4. Great Quality Video
Unlike a lot of smaller cameras, the Olympus Pen actually produces great
quality video that more than competes with my Canon that was purchased
just for that purpose. The camera is much smaller, lighter and easier to
manoevre, making it great for filming or vlogging on the go. Although I haven’t used it much personally because my endless promises to start producing videos never really come to fruition, it’s nice to have something portable for when I actually get on with it!
5. Touch Screen
This is what dreams are made of. No more faffing around trying to find the
shutter button when taking selfies; no more trying to focus the camera
on one part of your picture and failing miserably. The touch screen
allows you to touch where you want to focus and ensure that’s the
primary point of the image (where you get the blur from,) as well as making pictures so much faster to
take. This feature makes it so easy and enjoyable to take pictures I wonder why more manufacturers don’t integrate a touch screen into their cameras!
The Olympus Pen is a definite investment at around the £400-500 mark, but if you really want to up your photography game or start 2016 with a tool that will really improve the quality of your images then it’s worth a purchase. Initially I was just using this on-the-go or for taking wider shots, but the more I used it the more I realised it was far easier (and far less bulky) to use than my other cameras; the trick for macro shots is to zoom in the camera lens and stand a bit further away, rather than getting the lens really close to the subject. So many products are hyped up by bloggers without any real justification, but this is a camera I thoroughly recommend and is totally worthy of its lustworthy reputation. If I had to buy it again, I totally would. (Read my original review and feature of the Olympus Pen here.) I’m seriously considering investing in some new lenses and accessories (Olympus obviously know there’s a huge blogging market out there, launching a range of fashionable straps and camera bags that actually look like clutches!) for a new year, so I can reciprocate the love my Pen has shown me. It’s undoubtedly the queen of the cameras.
After trying to take a photo of the Pen without the Pen, I realised even more how much I love it… It was a nightmare to get a half decent shot on my Nikon after not picking it up in months!
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