With my little eye
I bought a new camera yesterday. I've been needing one for a while: my three-year-old Kodak EasyShare had been dropped on its head too many times. Also, having the word "EASY" plastered across my camera is far less cool in blogging circles than it is on double decker tour bus circles. Everytime I took a picture with it at the Blogher conference last year, I felt like I was standing up in high-waisted, elasticized jeans. Stonewashed. While everyone else was firing off their Canon Rebels and Nikon D's, I was shooting with the "Mom jeans" of cameras.
I don't pretend to be a real Photographer. But even with my humble point and shoot, I've taken a few photos over the years I feel good about, and I've learned some things. I have an eye for composition. I've gotten cocky enough to criticize my husband when I have to hand him the camera. There's a difference in mood between his and my pictures of the kids he's not shooting through the viewfinder of his heart, I tell him. And I've become obsessed with natural light. I hate flash. I'd much rather sacrifice focus to keep atmosphere.
This is where my EasyShare was starting to frustrate me. I don't feel ready to move up to a SLR, but I'm ready to do more with ISO and exposure. And even though a digital camera is a legitimate piece of equipment for what we and the IRS incredibly now consider my "work," I couldn't bring myself to spend upward of $500.
In other words, I've outgrown the trike, but still need training wheels. So after much deliberation, I settled on a Sony Cybershot DSC-H10, for the highly technical reason that it felt good in my hand. It set me back about two hundred and fifty tax-deductible bucks. It has manual options for exposure and ISO, and other features that I won't even pretend to understand. Although it lacks an optical viewfinder and won't take easily replaced AA batteries, those are drawbacks I can live with. I've heard the Cybershots perform decently in low light and the 10X zoom will let me get even closer to my subjects in the wild. Not that my kids even notice me and my camera anymore. I am Jane Goodall with the chimps. But with 10x zoom, I can now blog about their earwax.
When I started blogging, I never would have guessed how essential photography would become to my process. My cats spilled coffee on my ibook about six months ago, and I have been typing without letters a, z, q and "delete" ever since (I copy and paste them in, and let me tell you, I've gotten pretty fast at it). So I can blog without a letter "a", but not without a camera. When Heather Armstrong said in a recent interview that she keeps a notepad handy to jot down material for her blog, I realized that my camera has been my notepad, my shorthand way of capturing a moment that I want to write about later (like I did with the red dress). I guess the shutter click is my way of saying, "Note to Self:"
Labels: FAQ-type stuff