We read about software that can improve blurry photos these days, and about significant improvements to autofocus on even inexpensive cameras. We look at photos that we take, the washed out ones, and wish we’d have exposed them a little less, or a little more. We wonder how they can be improved.
My solution points to bracketing. This is a current feature on one of my digital cameras, the Panasonic Lumix FZ20. When switched on, it will take three photos with three different exposure times (high, medium and low). I only press the shutter button once, and get three photos from which I pick the best one. Of course, this series of photos can also be used to get high dynamic range (HDR) photographs through manipulation, but the point is, the consumer only needs to press the shutter once. That’s the key.
I believe eventually we’ll see cameras that integrate bracketing into every photo. They’ll not only vary exposure times but also focus. The process will be seamless to us. We’ll press the shutter button once, the camera will only seemingly take one photo, but when we get home and download the photos to our computer, our camera software will allow us to use slider controls to adjust the focus and exposure without damage to the photograph’s quality. We’ll be able to bring different elements in and out of focus, and make the photo brighter or darker, just as we please.