take a picture <by camera / using a camera> [usage 'by']

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Tippuri

New Member
Finnish
Hi

Word "by" causes me confusion sometimes. Here I have few examples to explain the problem. I'm not sure about correctness of these sentences.

1. You can take a picture by camera
2. You can take a picture by using a camera
3. You can take a picture using a camera.
4. He won the competition by driving fastest.
5. He won the competition driving fastest.

Could you explain me the logic whether to use "by" or not in generally, please.

Thank you
 
  • Madrid001

    Senior Member
    Spanish
    He won the competition by driving really fast
    He won the competition cause he was the fastest competitor
     

    Tippuri

    New Member
    Finnish
    Thank you for answers. I still have one question.

    Sentences below looks very similar but one of them has "by" before verb+ing. Why not to use by in other clause as well?

    "He won the competition by driving really fast." "You can take a picture using a camera."


    Thank you
     

    PaulQ

    Senior Member
    UK
    English - England
    Hi

    Word "by" causes me confusion sometimes. Here I have few examples to explain the problem. I'm not sure about correctness of these sentences.

    1. You can take a picture by camera
    2. You can take a picture by using a camera
    3. You can take a picture using a camera.
    4. He won the competition by driving fastest.
    5. He won the competition driving fastest.
    1. As the only way of taking a picture is by camera, the by sounds strange. Normally, you would say, “You can take a picture with a camera.”

    The use of ‘by’ is unusual. It means “through the means of a/any” and is restrictive because the sentence, “You can take a picture by camera.” has the nuance: “You can take a picture only by camera but you cannot take a picture by using anything else.”

    By < ø instrument> is used when this latter meaning is needed: “Do not lift by hand!” = “Do not try to lift this with your hands, use something else.” (The something else is usually specified in the message.)

    2 “by using a camera” is used in the context of answering the question “How…?”:
    A: “How am I going to take a picture?”
    B: “You can take a picture by using a camera.”

    3. “ø using a camera.” is used when making a suggestion:
    “Here is the famous statue. You can take a picture using a camera.”

    4. He won the competition by driving fastest. = “He won the competition through the means of driving fastest” = “He won the competition using the method of driving fastest”

    5. “He won the competition driving fastest.” = “At the time that he won the competition, he was driving fastest.” Because the by has been omitted, the sentence loses its meaning of "through the means of".
     
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