Monday, December 20, 2010

Photography Novice

I have never been much into photography. I've always thought my point and shoot Canon Elph did all it needed to do for the purposes I needed it for.

However, now that I am getting into blogging (It has become my new favorite addiction!), I want to make sure that the pictures I take look good. I mean the blogosphere is looking at them (or at least the few readers I have so far).

According to this article, point and shoot cameras may be on their way out as smartphones with built in cameras are becoming more convenient for people to use (expect for this girl who still hasn't jumped on the smartphone bandwagon). Those who don't use their smartphone are usually photography enthusiasts who will shell out the dollars for an SLR.

So I'm contemplating if I should bite the bullet and invest in one of these babies

or if I should just practice and make more of a conscious effort to take better pictures with the camera I have.

Here's an example of a recent photography mishap, which you may remember me mentioning in one of my #reverb10 posts.

This is the photo we used for our Christmas card.

See how it looks kinda yellowish and fuzzy around the edges.

My brother was our "photographer" and to be honest the picture taking had to be quick since our pup, Rusty, was not having it with the Reindeer Ears! I'm trying to use this as a learning experience rather than fretting over the outcome of a less than stellar picture (I have to keep reminding myself that I'm "Letting it Go"!)

So I'm wondering.....

Is it just the lighting that was off or did the camera really play a role?
If I had taken it with one of those fancy cameras (once I figured out how to use it) would the result have been worth a $750 investment?

Help me out blogosphere photography experts! I know you are out there!

Should we invest in a new camera? Practice and try harder with the one we have? Save the money for a video camera instead?



  1. Honestly i don't think I get much better pics with our nikon d60. Probably cuz I don't know how to use it that well. But lighting is still always an issue for me.

  2. Hi, I just saw your comment on my blog about photography. I have the same camera you do ... that is a good idea to create tips for how to blog with a camera like we have!

    I wish I knew how to use that camera better, I know it has settings and things but I have no idea how to set them :-) Sad, huh? That is why I hesitate with a fancy new camera, if I can't even learn to use the one I have??

    I will think of some tips though because I'm teaching a workshop at the Blissdom conference in January for "home bloggers" and one of the areas we want to cover is photography tips for the home. I will for sure need to talk about those of us who don't have something fancy!

    Basically, I would say you have to have good natural light, use no flash and lately I've been experimenting with editing a little bit in picnick from Flickr to help boost the image if it doesn't look right. I also take tons of picture and try to pick the best ones I have, many of mine are awful :-) and some rooms in my house never look good no matter what I try!


  3. Oh, and one more...I have to hold my camera VERY still to take a good picture!!

  4. We purchased a really nice video camera a couple of years ago. I was really excited. It turns out that video is a lot of work. Between upgrading our computer to handle the type of video the camera output (not enough RAM), learning to use the software and camera, to editing, to storing to sharing, etc. it was too much for me.

    A DSLR, I think would be the same way. Look at this guy's photography workflow as an example. I don't know how he has time for anything else! However, photography is this guy's passion. If it is something you want to pursue, you might enjoy the process and producing the final product.

    I have found that the best camera is the one you have with you (a phrase floating around the internet, there is even an iphone app with the same name.) The Christmas card photo might not be professional quality, but it turned out great and you didn't have to spend an hour setting up lighting, adjusting the photo in photoshop, etc. The picture captured a memory and it worked great.

    As for lighting, I have settled with knowing that for my camera of choice (smart phone) low lighting photos absolutely suck. They are terrible and the smart phone low light photos probably won't get better for a while. However, it is the camera I have with me most of the time and I would rather lug it around than a DSLR. Regular photos in good light (and as Melissa mentioned, holding the camera very still) turn out pretty good. The smart phone is nice because it takes great video too. Although, I think the DSLRs are taking video now as well.

  5. I really appreciate all of the insight you guys are providing! It's actually a big help! This is why I LOVE blogs!

    I think that I'm going bust out my Canon Elph manual and see if I can't experiment with a few things on the camera I have first before upgrading! I'll post any tips and tricks I come up with as well.