Saturday, January 30, 2010

13 Ways to Better Photos...DAY 8 {camera talk}

Gratitude makes the heart grow fonder: it’s NOT about your camera

Before you even read what I’m going to say today, take a moment & read this article. I promise you won’t regret it.


I’ve gotten quite a few emails & inquiries about camera recommendations from friends & family & blogland. And I’m honored that people would even ask in the first place. But I’ll be honest: I don’t research cameras. All that camera-ese that is thrown around between photographers is literally like Greek to me.

And it is all on purpose.

mirror, out of focus

You see, at this point in our lives, photography is a hobby for us. And my hope is that our hobby will continue to evolve, our photography will continue to improve, & our resources will continue to grow. But for now? For now I avoid looking, drooling, & researching new, better gear.

Because the article has become my mantra: I don’t NEED a better camera because IT ISN’T ABOUT MY CAMERA. It is about me. It is about Jon. It is about capturing our lives as they happen, focusing on the details, creating fun & natural photos that others can treasure. And if we happen to have fun in the process, all-the-better!

I’ve seen far too many people spend thousands of dollars on top-of-the-line cameras without a clue how to use them. And the truth is that yes, the megapixels might be higher, the ISO might be greater, the abilities of the camera might have been beamed down from the future…but YOU are the photographer & YOU make the photos.

THAT is why all those basics we’ve been talking about are so important to grasp: they are literally the foundation of your photos. You can take amazing pictures with iphones, with old film cameras, even with polaroids. No one says you have to spend $2500 to get great photos.

Almost 5 years ago, my parents bought me my first dSLR. We spent $900 at the time. And guess what? It is my current dSLR. Someday we’ll have the extra pocket change to buy fancy equipment, external flashes, extra batteries, giant memory cards, & an array of other fancy gear. But more than once, I’ve reminded myself that for me, this is about the pictures.

Our very basic no-longer-in-production Canon Digital Rebel has served us well. We have one extra 50mm lens. And I learned through these tutorials how to use the manual settings. I am certainly ready for an upgrade. But our bank account isn’t. And you know what? THAT IS AWESOME. Because in the meantime, I get to continue mastering my basic skills. I get to shoot awesome families & get creative behind the lens. I get to treasure the photos that I am able to take just because I DO have a camera.

So my one piece of advice to you is to learn to use your camera, whatever it may be, before you purchase a new one. Having a new camera will NOT guarantee better photos…learning the basic foundation of photography will.

Let me know if you are interested in the {very basic} knowledge that I pass along to those who inquire.

this amazing photographer's camera suggestions
TIPA awards
a Q&A with one of my favorites

This post is part of a photography series...
Day 1 {angle}
Day 2 {the golden rule}
Day 3 {composition}
Day 4 {lighting}
Day 5 {perspective}
Day 6 {details}
Day 7 {focus}

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