The New Nikon DL is here!


Back in the fall of 2014, I was very excited to get an email from no other than Nikon’s mothership in Tokyo, Japan to shoot a chunk of their campaign for the new 300 f/4.  I was honored and humbled to be able to work with a brand that I’ve used and have been a fan of for years.

This past fall, I got another one of those mysterious emails, which usually start with “Greetings from Tokyo! We’re planning a new photo shoot for an interesting project.  What does your schedule look like in November?”  At the time of course, I had absolutely no idea what the shoot was all about, but as it turned out, it was for the brand new premium compact Nikon DL series of cameras.

These cameras will be available in three models to suit just about any type of photographer:

18-50 f/1.8-2.8

24-85 f/1.8-2.8

24-500 f/2.8-5.6

A few features I absolutely love about this camera:

  • Amazing image quality (so much so, that I can literally use these photos in my portfolio alongside photos shot on my Nikon D810’s.)
  • FAST glass!
  • Incredibly quick response time, intuitive menus I’m used to using on my DSLR’s
  • Hybrid autofocus beyond any compact camera I’ve used to date.
  • Quick and easy sharing of images from your camera directly to your smart phone.

I try not to get too wrapped up in the technical details of this or any camera I shoot.  I’m not a tech blogger, but a photographer, and my biggest concerns are whether or not this camera feels right in my hands, enables me to work in the way I want to work, and produces the quality of images I’m used to taking.

This was one of those dream assignments where the client comes to you with an amazing job, asks what you want to shoot, and they say “yes” to your first few ideas.  In this case, that meant going to the incredibly beautiful Maderas Village, just outside of San Juan Del Sur in Nicaragua.  I was there last August on vacation, fell in love with it, made great friends with the whole crew down there, and was looking for an excuse to go back and photograph it all.

I’m so used to shooting jobs that involve tons of production and lighting, and this job was not one of those.  The overall concept involved shooting the camera in as loose of a way as possible, and shooting beach lifestyle photos in a place like Nicaragua made perfect sense for this campaign.  Despite bringing a few cases of gear with me (It’s ingrained in me, what can I say?), we used nothing more than beautiful natural light and the occasional reflector..that’s it.

This isn’t the camera that I’d necessarily use on a big production shoot (these shoots are typically reserved for my DSLRs), but it’s the camera that I’d bring absolutely everywhere, because there’s no excuse not to have it with me.  It’s all too easy to find an excuse not to bring a giant DLSR with me everywhere I go, and nobody’s going to hold that against me.  They’re amazing, and they serve their purpose, but to carry one with me everywhere sometimes feels a bit like a ball and chain.  The DL however, fills that huge gap for me— it’s a camera that enables me to express myself visually, and to work fluidly, without being tied down with a bulkier system.  To be able to throw it in my bag, go on vacation, and shoot amazing photos is a huge win for me, and I think it will be for tons of other photographers too.  The camera absolutely exceeded my expectations, and I’m thrilled to have been involved in such a cool campaign.

I’m so happy to have shared this campaign with my good friend, and fellow New Yorker, Steve Simon.  Take a look at his in-depth view, along with gorgeous images he shot in Havana, Cuba HERE!

This entire shoot could not have been possible without my incredible crew, so a huge, well deserved thanks goes out to all of them!

Client: Nikon Japan/Worldwide

Creative Director: Soichi Hayashi

Talent: June Freedom

Photo Assistant: Michael Cardiello

Cinematography/Editor: David Geffin

Production Managers: Matt Dickinson, Allison VanCleave

Production Assistant: Bill Quinn, Erica Jane Hicks

11 responses to "The New Nikon DL is here!"

  1. Great work Drew! Proud to have worked on the campaign with you. Steve S.

    6:27 am - 23/02/2016 Reply

  2. Great job, Drew. It’s so much fun to watch as your career continues to blossom. Keep up the great work.

    12:10 pm - 23/02/2016 Reply

  3. Bob Singer


    1:36 pm - 23/02/2016 Reply

    • Bob- I wish I knew, but I literally have no idea. Sorry!

      2:58 pm - 23/02/2016 Reply

  4. […] Just wanted to thank Nikon Global and Creative Director Soichi Hayashi for the opportunity. I’m also proud to have shared this campaign with my good friend, Drew Gurian.  You can find his thoughts and beautiful imagery HERE! […]

    1:38 pm - 23/02/2016 Reply

  5. Will there be eyepiece viewfinders available instead of having to have the camera away from your face to watch the screen?

    5:53 pm - 23/02/2016 Reply

    • Hey Kevin- Yes- they will be releasing an electronic viewfinder (EVF).

      12:39 am - 24/02/2016 Reply

  6. Great stuff Drew. Thanks for sharing your experience with the camera. Can’t wait to see more pics from the shoot.

    11:51 pm - 23/02/2016 Reply

  7. […] note: Despite Drew Gurian’s enthusiasm why can’t Nikon make a mirrorless camera on-par with rivals Sony and Fuji? Same to you Canon? […]

    2:39 am - 24/02/2016 Reply

  8. […] Drew Gurian DL Preview at […]

    10:13 pm - 24/02/2016 Reply

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