Moving On Up

Last weekend, somebody learned how to use a big-girl camera. (It was me.) I’d like to say that I’ve been dying to get my hands on one because I know the difference between my point-and-shoot and a DSLR will be night and day, but that’s not exactly the case. There’s been one in my house the whole time. And I’ve been too lazy to spend 20 minutes reading about light metering and 10 minutes pressing random buttons to see what happens. Seriously, that was way easier than I expected. My pictures will suffer no more!

I still have a lot to learn. And a lot to spend. The camera I’m currently using is a Canon Rebel XT with the stock lens, and it isn’t even mine (it’s my brother’s). My friend Alicia (who totally rules) has offered to let me borrow her back-up Nikon D100, so I’ll be moving on to that at the end of the month. But I’ll eventually need to invest in my own! Au revoir, tax return.

To demonstrate the difference between my point-and-shoot and the Rebel, I did a little photo shoot with the pretty hydrangea my boyfriend gave me the other day (what a sweet boy).

These actually don’t look all that different, mainly because I had decent light that day. But being able to control the amount of light entering the lens makes all the difference, especially in my apartment (which only has once decent source of natural light). So now if my pictures are over- or under-exposed, I have only myself to blame! And being able to manually focus allows me to emphasize specific portions of a subject. Bokeh can be a great way to highlight the main focus of a photo, provided it isn’t overdone.

Hurray camera!


  1. says

    Carey, I can relate as I was shooting with a 35-135 lens, no macro. Now I have closeup filters which do an amazing job at getting those mouth watering shots.

    Plus, I still use film (yes I know, prehistoric :) and my options are running low on film choices so eventually I’ll have to go to the digital side…I have a Kodak ZI8 video cam which I use for quick digital shots but I’m spoiled with the macro. I use interactive technology but even there I’m a techno procrastinator. Enjoy your blog! Thanks.


    • says

      It’s really amazing the difference a lens can make. When I first moved on from the point & shoot to a digital slr, I was using the standard 18–55 lens until I upgraded to a 50mm macro. The 50mm is the cheaper 1.8, but it’s still far better than the 18–55. (I recently sold off my camera body and lens, and upgraded to a new body and rebought the same 50mm. While I was waiting for the lens to arrive, I went back to the old 18–55, and I was not happy! :P)

      I love that you still use film! I keep my eye out for old Leica 35mm cameras, because I would love to have one if I could get it for a decent price. It’s such a shame that film is becoming harder and harder to come by. The developing process (which I’ve observed but never tried myself) is fascinating, and gives you a greater appreciation for everything that goes into a capturing an image. We’re all so spoiled by digital gadgets these days!

  2. says

    Yes, macro is a must for food. You just cannot capture the essence of a dish and get the drool affect without it! Allows you to use some natural light as well.

    I’ve been in the darkroom developing and here’s nothing like witnessing your image emerge on paper in the tub through the pool of developer. I used to spend hours trying different techniques, all of which now can be accomplished digitally. Unfortunately people learning photography today only experience that from camera to computer screen. It really is a loss that we trade for instant gratification. Of course I do get CD’s and post pics to my cooking and photography blogs so it is convenient.

    Yes, Leicas are quite a find! There are collections of old equipment out there and film buffs, but developing is also challenging as photo labs cannot make money on it anymore. Aaahh well…change is good, right? :)


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