The camera manufacturers continue to produce some extremely cringe-worthy advertisements for their products that scream, “Let me tell you about all these awesome things from the marketing brochures in this made-up narrative! You need to have this!”. For example, look at Nikon’s “Mongolia” and “Bali” promotional videos. These are so hackneyed, un-subtle and condescending they border on being insulting with their “buy these to become a cool world-traveler” undertones. For the sake of good taste I won’t link to those here – but if you want to engage in psychological self-abuse, you can search for those on Youtube. Just don’t blame me for any trauma.
However, Nikon’s Japanese advertising arm actually employs a much more subtle and enjoyable approach to promoting their line of Nikkor lenses. These are a series of “My Nikkor” videos found in The NikonImagingJapan Youtube channel. You can access the “My Nikkor” playlist here. In this series, various Japanese Nikon photographers talk about the Nikkor lenses they use and showcase some of their work. Unlike the English-language videos, there are little advertising overtones. The videos are very practical. The featured photographers demonstrate how they work, talk about how they use the lenses, then show the results created. Interestingly, it’s not always about the heaviest and baddest lenses – established photographers use whatever available tool which has the appropriate size and performance for the situation that can deliver the results they want.
Indeed, I believe the most enjoyable thing about this series of videos is that it inspires you to go out and shoot more. Watching these people work, it is obvious that the success of their images is driven more by their dedication and skill. While the equipment is still necessary, you get the feel that it has really become the lesser element in the image’s successful construction. Putting a multi-thousand dollar 800mm lens in my hands lets me get the focal length perspective. But after that it is all up to me to make it a good image.
Without further ado, here are some snippets of these videos. The Youtube channel itself (linked below) has many more videos and you should visit it if you want to watch more of these.
Fashion with the 24-70mm f/2.8E ED:
Looking at a rare tool. Architecture with the PC-E Micro 45mm f/2.8D ED:
Getting close to wild life in Botswana with the 800mm f/5.6E FL ED:
Bear vs salmon plus other wild life with the 600mm f/4G ED:
Sea coast with the 18-35mm f/3.5-4.5G ED:
Maiko in Kyoto with the 35mm f/1.8G ED:
Super GT with the 500mm f/4E FL ED:
Food photography with the DX Micro 40mm f/2.8G:
Documentary photography in Mali with the 24-120mm f/4G ED:
Trains with the 200-500mm f/5.6E ED:
Whales with the 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6G ED:
Travel with the 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6G ED:
You can view the whole playlist here. Enjoy!