Sunday, 27 March 2011

meet the cameras

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It seems there may be a DSLR in the ruby future of the blog (one of the reasons for going to New York, hehe). I created a monster when I first asked my boyfriend to take an outfit shot... or rather, I think the interest in photography was always there, but my having a specific request gave him some structure to practice with. I used a similar method when I wanted to write a book, incidentally. I'd always wanted to write but could never finish anything, until my mom said "You know, Harlequin are always actively soliciting new writers." So my first book (unpublished, like the second) was a cheesy romance. I've never been a romance reader or fan, but knowing what the plot was and how the characters had to be more or less allowed me to focus my energy into putting words on paper. Wow, that was a complete tangent. Anyway, Albert's really into photography now, and I'm excited about the camera-to-be and the upcoming potential to blur backgrounds so much you won't even know we're in New York. ; D

However, I've also been a big proclaimer of the idea that you don't need a fancy camera to take fancy pictures, so before the fancy camera arrives on the scene, I thought I'd celebrate the unsung heroes of the blog.

The Lumix:
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This is Albert's camera, and it's a good one. It looks a lot like a very posh and expensive Leica, and in fact it has a Leica lens, so it's essentially the same. However, it's made by Panasonic. At about $400, it isn't exactly bargain basement, but significantly less than a DSLR and it takes excellent photos (my parents also have an earlier model). Most of the pictures on the blog are taken with this camera. An example:
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It does some nice blur, and you can set it to Aperture or Shutter and adjust the ISO. Drawbacks include some distortion depending on the settings (but since this usually gives me longer legs I don't complain) ; ) and a really lame zoom.

The Sony:
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One year, when exceptionally broke, I needed a new camera (that has always been a necessity in my books). So I went to Zellers with my mom, the negotiator extraordinaire. This camera was originally almost $200, but it was on sale for something. Then we discovered that the only one remaining was the display model, so my mom wrangled a discount. Then I signed up for a Zellers card and got an additional $10 off. Result: $89 of great investment.
I love my camera. It's cheap, it's cheerful (it was $89 for chrissake) and it's great! Colours come out strong and clear. The low light capacity is excellent. It has an ISO setting which you can't really adjust but which does improve the light, and adjusting the white balance allows me to go from ghostly white to pleasantly yellow, which I'm in favour of. It's obviously not as good as Albert's camera, but for the price, it's ace.
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(The first picture is also an example of adjusting the white balance to give myself some colour... it makes things look warmer in general).

The Pentax:
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The Pentax is kind of our impractical baby. It was Albert's dad's, in the 70s/80s. It takes the best pictures of the bunch, but it's tempermental. Usually only a few pictures can be developed from each role, for mysterious reasons. It has been sent to the repair shop. Poor baby.
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So there you have it. What's your relationship with your camera? Do you feel it adds to or takes away from your blog?

36 comments:

Shybiker said...

Definitely adds. I started blogging with a Canon PowerShot point-and-shoot and the photos weren't great. Then, last December I got a Nikon dSLR and everything is sharper and better. Plus, I feel more emotionally vested now.

Your ancient cameras are cool. Years ago I had a film SLR.

The best place to buy photographic equipment in NYC is B&H -- but, because it's run by Orthodox Jews, it is closed on Saturdays.

Raquel said...

I am satisfied with my point and shoot Nikon, though as you know I'll make the step to a DSLR as soon as I can afford it. Well I'm not complaining about my current one, for €75 on an outlet store is really good, though the sharpness of a DSLR is not comparable.
I think my favourite pictures of all your cameras must be the last ones, though your sony ones are quite nice too, not that I'm a photography expert haha!

Closet Fashionista said...

Yayyyyyyy for cameras! I need a new one...but I don't want to buy one, haha
http://www.closet-fashionista.com

dimi said...

Wow, I love your cameras and all your pics. I have a pathetic Kodak V803 (8 full MP! Bought for 65 euro ages ago!) and I still can't figure out how to use it properly! Oh well... it's a love/hate relationship that we have! And I'm still happy for actually taking those shots and blogging, that I don't get discouraged by the outcome and all the cropping! Kisses!

Michal said...

This is a really cool post! I've always had an interest i photography, so I got my Nikon DSLR before I even thought about starting a blog. Unfortunately, I really haven't taken the time to properly learn everything about it, but I'm getting better. I also have an older 300mm that I haven't used for a while, just because of the expense of developing film. I really want to take that out again now, especially after your posting of those last two photos. Photo quality is just so awesome on film cameras.

Annebeth said...

I dream about a good, expensive DSLR because the pictures are just so much prettier, but I manage with my cheap crappy camera! not bad for 80 euro if you ask me, not amazing but ok.

I love the last pictures best btw!

A said...

Emily,

I have DSLR for more than one year and before that I had regular SLR. Three principles of a good picture - Subject Subject and Subject. Having said that, I am learning to use my DSLR now and started capturing my notes in a blog. (a-learningtoclick.blogspot.com). May be you can contribute some posts...haha

A Certain Vintage said...

I love my SLR but I had it for a good while before I ever even thought about blogging. I think outfit posts, blog pictures will just always stress me out. So jealous of your lovely old school camera collection!
tagged you for a kreativ blog award over on my page if you want to check it out :)
xox

Courtney said...

I recently got a new DSLR and LOVE IT. I don't use it as much as I would like. It's a bit heavy to carry.

My computers are old and neither can really handle processing HD video, which is what the DSLR has. That was kind of a bummer.
--Courtney

Amber Blue Bird said...

I have a Nikon point and shoot and it gets the job done although I have yet to figure out how t take good pics in low light. I would love a DSLR but it is way out of my budget right now, cant wait to see your new camera

Stef / Diversions said...

It 's great to hear someone say that a DSLR is nice to have but not required. I don't really dare pipe up about it too much as soon as I DO use a DSLR.. hehe but I completely agree.

Your pictures are always fantastic :)

Tanvi said...

Oooo! A new cam. I definitely think the cam adds to my blog.

from © tanvii.com

sojourned in style said...

I feel like my own camera adds to my blog but its manner of getting their can be difficult, its tempermental. I want a DSLR it must be heaven! all of your photos turn out phenomael regardless of a camera you have such a good sense of good photo-taking.

From Suns To Moons said...

You know a heck of a lot more about photography than I do. My expertise lies in a Canon I got for my birthday, knowing how to take pics in the shade, and how to use a wall/fence for some sweet diffusion. That's it. The rest is Greek to me!

Rebeccak said...

How exciting? a DSLR! You will have to fill us in on the learning process! I have been wanting to get one ofr a while, but can't really justify the investment without putting some time aside to learn to use it.

I have alittle canon - similar to your little camera. It doesn't always take the best pictures but it is little and wasn't to expensive - so it is super practical.

Erin Dawn said...

Yay cameras! So cool to see you with the Russian one. :D

Emily, Resplendent Tranquility said...

Ooh, a DSLR will be fun. You gave me a good laugh with the blurring backgrounds bit! And I always enjoy a camera appreciation post. The Lumix takes such nice photos. I really liked the ones from your previous post. The quality looks almost film-like at times. Speaking of film, I do hope the Pentax comes back in proper working order.

As for my blog, I use a Sony Cyber-shot very similar to yours. It's such a good little camera and I'm generally very pleased with my pictures. I don't think it takes away from my blog and I most certainly agree that you don't need a fancy camera to take nice pictures. Any picture my camera produces that I'm not thrilled about is most likely due to my own error and/or lack using the proper settings.

Terri said...

Well, I only have one little snap and shoot to use and yet, I'm still discovering features of it, so that camera is appropriate to my purposes for now. I keep telling myself if my blog lasts...I will invest in a better camera than my Sony cybershot.

Anthea said...

Ha! I thought you were using an SLR all along. I use my boyfriend's camera. I love it. I want my own one some day. Photography is so addictive, there's always a new lens to buy or a flash or a...I've been able to keep the addiction at bay though because it's an expensive one.

I can't wait to see the pics you take with your new camera.

summertime dreams said...

Very interesting! I've been having a problem with gray-ish, grainy pics on my new camera. What adjustment did you make to the white balance to warm up your photos??

Krystal said...

ohhh i like the pentax, reminds me of what I learned manual on! I use my d90...but oh my goodness is it heavy for walking around all day!

Kristen said...

The Pentax is such a great camera, it takes awesome pictures, I wish I could find one that was in good shape!

MAUD said...

i love my camera dearly - so much so that i drag it around with me everywhere, so it's constantly getting banged up.

(and i have the same dress as you in lilac!)

Liz said...

I think my D5000 does WONDERS for my blog! I have recently been playing with the focal lenght/aperture for my outfit shots. Though I am not lucky enough to have a boyfriend/husband photographer - I use a tripod and nikon remote.

Good think photography is a passion of mine! I have 5 other cameras (digital - Canon D10 that sometimes takes my outfit shots in my roommates hands - and I use it for underwater portraiture - and 4 film SLRs that get played with)!

What kind of DSLR are you looking at!?

-Lizzy
http://restonstyle.blogspot.com

CAITLIN said...

i just have a little automatic point and shoot, which i definitely think detracts from my blog but i don't really have the option to invest in a nicer one at this point. i also feel like i can't justify buying a nice camera only to take outfit photos! is that weird? i was a film major and always had an interest in photography, but i hate the technicality of it. and my tripod has blown over and smashed my camera into the ground so many times, it makes me nervous!!

ps loved your comment about london hipsters. i really think the american hipster is so much different--london has always been so fashion-forward, they're always all over the trends. new york almost doesn't count as an american hipster haven (with the exception of brooklyn) because it's the fashion capital and they just know what's up anyway. the true american hipster, in my mind, is sort of the modern beatnik (with indie rock instead of poetry as the unifying factor).

Penny said...

Is this the last picture taken with the Pentax? i like it...
I have an old-old Kodak bought under similar conditions... i had one that broke down just as I was about to go on vacation ( maybe one day before) so with only my summer-vacation budget I went in a large electrical devices shop and bought the same one that had broken down ( but after 2 years it costed only 89 euros)...i dont always like it and i always look for a new one but it helps me keep some memories and for this i love it :)

Kallie, Happy Honey and Lark said...

My camera (his name is Lars) is my favorite thing in the entire world. I just like taking pictures. I'm dying for a cool film camera like yours. I had a Minolta but its broken :(

Neon Noose said...

Lovely pictures. Well I wanted a nice Big Canon camera but I opted for an Olympus...and now that I think of it I'm glad that I did.

MOUSEVOX VINTAGE said...

i love the obvious contrast of the film photographs in comparison with the others. my trusty canon a-1 is about the same age as your pentax and takes the loveliest pictures. though i love my dslr, it still doesn't produce photographs nearly as interesting.

M said...

I enjoyed meeting all the cameras in your camera family. We have a Canon SLR and a Nikon both are introductory cameras and we still have the factory lens on them. I have been feeling quite limited with Josh's Cannon and would love to upgrade the lens but it's not in the cards right now. I love that your mom is good at bargaining. My mom is amazing it at as well.

jess said...

I have a Sony point and shoot. I really like it and it has adjustable settings. My stepdad gave me his old SLR that I'm going to learn how to use over the summer.

Vicky said...

Very cool... I love taking pictures (as you can see on my latest posts) :)) yours are very cute!

Vicky
new post: Isla Lobos | When the sun goes down:&
follow me

Hannah Percyowl said...

Lumix *drool*
I have a very similar camera collection - I have a lumix dslr, but I'd really like a zoom and pancake lens for it. I just aquired almost exactly the same pentax camera, possibly a little earlier version though. And I have a tiny canon for carting around... and two other cameras :P
It can be a love-hate relationship sometimes, but I think the acquistion of a remote might help haha :)

Daisy said...

I love all kinds of camera, I have a Canon 450d which I adore and can alter with different kinds of lens. I also have many vintage camera which ( when i can find film ) I make good use of. It's not always the camera it is more the photographer who makes the photograph !

Velvet said...

I'm looking forward to buy a DSLR camera. Mine, although I like it, doesn't reflect properly colours. They look less intense than they really are.

Lucy, Dear Fish said...

I have a DSLR, a point and shoot, and an old analog Pentax, and I love them all! Like yours, my Pentax is so tempramental, I only ever get a few pictures from every roll of film, but they are beautiful!