In his latest post, Darwin Wiggett talks about the advantages of keeping a point and shoot around, and displays some good results.
Obviously they have both been manipulated some, the second much more, but using the fairly limited Picasa. The first is a baseball field and the second an inside shot from a Gaudi in Barcelona.
I have to accept that much of the final result was chance interacting with my preset (usually landscape) mode. And my goal is to reproduce these sorts of things in a much more determined fashion. I want to be able to claim more of the result as intentional. And yet, as final works, they are as much mine as my more recent manual shots in the sense that my eye set the frame. (I do however have more of a sense of accomplishment in my current manual phase. In fact, I take it a little further now and try to minimize manipulation; my effort it going almost entirely to creating the perfect in camera shot. This may change; I don’t know.)
But what I liked most about Wiggett’s column was just the pragmatism. The process is important and ultimately perhaps the crowning glory of photography but the resulting images, within the full ranges of planning, are not to be discounted.