Why the logo?

Today I’m going to tell you a bit about the David Samperio Photography logo. That’s right, those coloured lines that may look like a fountain to you and are in the top left corner of this website. To be more precise, I’m going to explain two things about the logo: what it is and means, and why I chose that idea for the design of the logo. Ok, make it three things then.

What is it and what does it mean?

If you have ever used an old lens, then the logo may look familiar to you. Before the digital era, when cameras used to have film in them and no battery, lenses used to be different in many ways from their modern counterparts. As the years have gone by, photography equipment design has lost some things and gained others. Nowadays it’s really common for us to see lenses and compact cameras with autofocus (that ‘beep’ thing that reminds us how modern we are) and even some high-end lenses have very sophisticated mechanisms to stabilise the image, with anti-vibration systems that counteract the shake of your hands and arms when holding the camera. Old lenses didn’t have any of these features, but all of them did have an aperture ring, and old zoom telephoto lenses had a bunch of long coloured lines along the barrel. You guessed it, the logo is based on these beautiful lines which are called the depth of field scale. Without getting into too many details and boring you to death, the lines basically give you an idea about the maximum and minimum distance at which the objects in your frame will appear in focus for the aperture you are using. So for example, if you are using an aperture of f/8 with the telephoto lens, you just need to take a look at the yellow line to know if the whole object situated 20 m from you is going to be sharp in your image or not.

Why did I choose this idea?

Modern lenses don’t have this feature anymore. The mechanism of the aperture ring has disappeared and now you modify the aperture from the camera. So if you need to change the aperture from f/4 to f/8 you just turn a wheel on the camera body while holding a button with your thumb or index finger. Is it easier now? Well, some photographers say that some years ago you just had to rotate the aperture ring and worry only about holding the camera, and they may be right. This is the reason I wanted this idea for the logo: for what it represents and also because it reminds me that photography has a meaning, always an intention and that there is a science behind it.

With that in mind I just asked my photography assistant Nat whether she could put her designer hat on and make something clean and nice to use as the logo. After a while she came up with the logo you see now on the website and I simply loved it because I like it aesthetically speaking and because I know what it is, and now you know too (in case you didn’t before).

Everything I saw and learned about photography when I was a boy, long before the Internet, was from my dad using his Nikon FM2, an incredible camera that still works of course. He also has the old Tamron 70-200 f/3.8 lens which I still use sometimes with a Nikon D800E. The first telephoto lens I ever saw and guess what? It has those multi-coloured lines! At the time I was too young to understand what those lines meant, but they caught my attention since the first moment I saw them. Coloured lines from the old times.

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