Pro Cameras Favor Lefties

Did you know that just about all pro cameras made today favor lefties? It's true, we've finally got a basic tool that's made for us lefties, as opposed to all the people using that "other" hand.

Back when Kodak had the top flight camera design crews on their payroll in the 1930's and 40's they discovered that cameras were being designed incorrectly. This was hard to admit, but Kodak bit the bullet and engineered their new professional 35mm camera system with the pro photographer holding the weight of the camera with their right hand, as it should be from a purely ergonomic point of view for right-handed folks.

To put it simply, Kodak designed a pro camera (the beautiful, precision built Kodak Ektra 35mm system) that used the photographer's right hand to support the camera's weight, since their right hands are stronger. The left hand fired the shutter, focused & operated the aperture and shutter settings. In other words, right-handed people operated most of the controls using their left hand. I bet these right-handed people thought that Kodak was just messing with their heads.

At the end of WWII, with the release of millions of affordable, very lightweight snapshot cameras, it didn't matter which hand held the camera's weight, so the designers moved the shutter release back to the right side of the amateur cameras, where it resides on nearly all cameras to this day, including professional DSLR cameras.

Since us lefties support the weight of the camera with our strong hand, just about every pro camera made today is designed for us lefties. How cool is that, fellow lefties? Finally, lefty photographers get a common product designed for us, even if it was inadvertent. This is ultra-cool, and it's what I often think about in the midst of using my pro DSLR's that do weigh in a bit on the hefty side.

Okay lesson over, have a nice beverage. But use your left hand.

Story & Photos Copyright Larry McNeil, 2013. All Rights Reserved.

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