I’ve been wanting to do this post featuring some photography tips for quite a while but kept putting it off because I felt as I was still too much of a newbie to be offering any advice. But then I realized I’ll probably always be learning and there is nothing wrong with sharing what I’ve learned so far. So I want to clarify that this not some expert offering premium advice, just a gal who has been experimenting for many years.
Back in 2009, after a long time scrimping and saving, I bought a refurbished, “already-outdated” Canon Rebel XTi. Over the years, having an older camera never really bothered me because I often preferred the blurry or grainy look of some photos—the ones that looked like they were found in a shoe box full of old memories. I also didn’t—and don’t—believe in running out to get the latest gadget because the manufacturer moves one button and adds a couple megapixels and shames you into thinking the one you bought last year is obsolete. But after borrowing my brother’s T2i (now already 3 years old) earlier this year, I realized digital photography took some strides in the four year gap between our cameras and I longed for an upgrade.
I tend to use titles for the sake of convenience. Just like with Artist, Seamstress, Gardener and many other titles, I always hesitate before calling myself a Photographer. I sure don’t feel like a photographer, just someone who is having fun learning how to take pictures. People think I know a lot about cameras and photography, but honestly, I don’t. I’ve simply taken pictures every single day since getting a DSLR camera in 2009. Every. Single. Day. But I am still learning things, even basic things. (Which may just mean I am a slow learner…)
Some people consider a photographer to be someone who takes a perfect technical photo, where all the settings are just right. Other people think photographers are those who tell a story or evoke a feeling through a picture, regardless of it’s technical quality. I tend side with the latter camp but I think a happy medium is where I want to be. You have to learn to crawl before you can run.
I’m not a brand-loyal person with too many things but I guess I would now consider myself a Canon Girl. I had a Canon A640 for the three years before my XTi. And I use my Grandfather’s old Canon AE-1 film camera. When I decided to get a DSLR, Canon just made sense (plus as far as refurbished/used options, the Canon was more in my price range.)
Like I said earlier, I really don’t feel like the most qualified person to be sharing tips and advice. But I have learned a few things (mostly through trial and error) over the years and maybe, jut maybe, they are things that you could benefit from. If you are interested in some articles filled with tips from photographers who really know what they are talking about, check out my Pinterest board on the subject. In the meantime, here is a hodgepodge of tips and lessons learned, both technical and design oriented, general and personal opinions:
The internet is a big wide place and there is so much more info out there. But the best way to learn is by doing.
What tips or tricks do you have for digital photography?
I hope those of you in the US had a nice Thanksgiving holiday yesterday and were able to spend it being nourished by food, family and friends. And I hope those of you celebrating Hanukkah are having a great week!
This time of year, I’m more focused on the things I’m so grateful to already have (a roof over my head, some security, a loving family, supportive friends, a pile of soft yarns to play with, a full belly and warm toes…just to name a few) as well as thinking about what I’m going to make and gift for others this season. So when I had a couple people recently ask me what is on the top of my wishlist for the holidays this year, I had a hard time thinking of something. Sure, there are always things I’d love to have but nothing really jumped out at me as something I’ve been seriously pining for. Like in recent years, we are scaling back from the over-consumeristic Christmases past. We are pooling our resources together to receive one or two nice gifts each and then filling stockings with little treats (like fancy chocolates, favorite cosmetics, etc.) Our goal is to focus more on quality time spent together, celebrating, eating, playing games. You know, the stuff that matters.
But with that said, sometimes it is fun to day dream about all the things we wouldn’t mind having. After much thought, here is my list:
Bean Boots // Enough Berroco Ultra Alapaca Light (in moon shadow) to make the Clairette Cardigan // Traditional Chinese style scissors // Haflinger slippers // Skruvsta Swivel Chair // Opinel No6 Walnut Handle Knife // Swift (+ Ball Winder) // Backyard Winter Gardening // The Beekeeper’s Bible // At Home in Nature
What are you wishing for this Holiday? (I’d love to hear about both the meaningful stuff and the material things.)
PS: This weekend, from Black Friday to Cyber Monday, I’m offering an additional 10% off everything in the Liesl Made Shop. This is on top of the fact that everything in the shop is already around 25% off. If you want any thing currently listed, now is the time to get it because all the current stock will be removed and no longer be available for purchase. Starting in 2014, I’m planning on focusing on all new stock. Use coupon code: FRI2MON
Also, you can get 10% off in my Dad’s shop, Buckaloo View, this weekend as well. Use coupon code: HOLIDAY2013
I’m joining in Yarn Along this week hosted by Ginny of Small Things. It’s the chance for those of us who love knitting and reading to share what project is currently on our needles and which book we have our noses buried in. And I personally add what music I’ve been listening to as well.
Knitting: Had the urge to pick up my Levenwick again. Maybe I’ll actually be able to wear it this winter!
Reading: For a while there I jumped around between a few books but nothing stuck. So a collection of short stories (specifically The Complete Stories of Truman Capote) might just do the trick.
What are YOU knitting/crocheting, reading or listening to this week?
I knew this would happen. Once I tried an amazing yarn (like this Malabrigo), I’d find it really hard to go back to the bargain stuff. My budget is in the bargain range and, don’t get me wrong, I’m so grateful for brands out there that make decent, affordable yarn. But sometimes you need a little luxury. What a better way to do it that with a one-skein hat?
Also, it turns out, knitting a hat every month leaves you with a lot of hats. I’ve been trying to mix my 12 hats up by throwing a few baby bonnets in the mix but still—so many hats for someone who normally doesn’t wear hats. I’m thinking of gifting a few but… maybe not this one.
Some images from this week.
(Im)patiently waiting to cast on my next hat with this hand-dyed yarn from Camellia Fiber Company.
I still haven’t figured out what kind of tree this is (some type of Hawthorn, maybe?) It produces these red berries every year. One of the big storms in recent years knocked it over. We cut most of it down and pushed the remaining part back in place. It looks awkward and oddly shaped but it’s settling and coming back. Being a perfect climbing tree, it was often filled with kids when I was younger.
Goldenrod gone to seed. (I hope to harvest a lot next year to dye with.)
Morning glory seed pods.
Garlic has been planted. It feels like it was just yesterday that I harvested it and thought: November’s so far off! I’m realizing that what we produce isn’t going to be enough for our family of five to eat and to plant for one year. So I may need to get some more to increase our yearly yields.
An oddly spring-like day inspired some much needed “spring” cleaning.
Been busy using up scraps—this is the first batch of simple zip pouches now in the shop.
My Dad has been working on new things for the Buckaloo View Shop for the holidays and I’ve been getting them photographed.
What things filled your week?