Thursday, March 6, 2008

Going Digital

If the weather holds out long enough over night and in the morning, I am going shopping. As much as I love my Canon AE1 camera and would not trade it for anything for photography, I am going to get my first digital camera. I was hoping to hold out until I could afford an SLR digital, but those things are still far to expensive for my budget. Anyone who knows me very well knows that I am notoriously slow about getting my pictures developed. There is always something going on that prevents me from taking the film in once it is filled up with pictures ready to be shared. Usually it is my memory. Just today as I was talking to my daughter about getting a new camera, she said, "Mom, you should take your film in and have it developed tomorrow." Uh, yeh, I should. I figure I have at least one roll, maybe two waiting to be developed. There is some still in the camera so that will wait....depending on how far it is used. I may just go ahead and take it in too. Some of that film that is ready to go is close to 2 years old. It is a good thing film doesn't go bad quickly, or I would be out of luck on many of my photographic endeavors. So, don't you agree--digital is the way to go. I can take my pictures and come home and get them on my computer, then just print the ones I want or need at the time.
Of course, the Canon AE1 is still going to be a big part of my photography fun because there is just so much I can do with it that I can't do with the digital--at least with any digital I can afford. That camera was my birthday gift years ago and it was not cheap. I have a great zoom/macro lens, filters, and all kinds of settings I haven't even figured out yet! (I really need a tutor to help me with those kinds of things because some things when written just go right over my head.) I love landscape photography. I also love taking the real close up pictures of animals, leaves, flowers, and other things you don't normally look at up close. Some of these digitals say that I can take pictures as close as 5-7 inches away, which is really pretty close. I am just going to have to see if the quality is as good as it is with my Canon.
So, why am I adding digital to my collection? Well, aside from what I said above about getting the film developed, I have these squiggly, wiggly, quickly growing up grandchildren who don't stop and wait for Grandma to get her camera put together...hmmm which lens will I use for this picture? Oh and wait for me to get the flash attached and for the little light to come on. I need batteries for the flash. I need a different battery for the camera. That camera was not meant for taking pictures of little ones on the run. It is wonderful for the landscape that isn't moving as fast as I try to push a button. It is wonderful for getting shots of animals and children and other people from a distance so that they are truly candid and look close up because of the great zoom lens I have. But it isn't so good in the tight spaces I call home. And, it surely doesn't fit in my purse like a digital camera will. From what I am seeing, these cameras are not much different in size than a cell phone or a pda, so I can have my camera with me whereever I go and be able to catch a shot of something without issues of not having my camera with me when I see something the bald eagle I saw just outside our little town several years ago. I have never seen a bald eagle before and did not believe I was really seeing one then. I had a perfect shot of it, too. But no camera!!! When I got home I did some investigating about bald eagles and found that they can, indeed, be found in our area. That was the first and last (so far) that I have ever seen anywhere, let alone in our area. I can't tell you how many deer, or blue herons I have had to pass up because I didn't have the camera with me. A few months ago, I did have the camera with me and went to have lunch beside a nearby lake while I was doing business in that area. There standing in the water, not more than 50 yards from me (probably closer) was a blue heron waiting for his lunch. My camera was still in the bag. I put it together as quickly as I could hoping and praying that the bird would stay put just long enough for me to get all set up. Sure enough, just as I was finishing, the heron took flight and I lost my chance. Canon AE1's need planning for good photography. Digitals don't. Reason enough. Then, once the pictures are on my computer and then on CD, I can share them so much easier with other family members and friends. Oh, and organizing digital shots on the computer is going to be a lot easier than the task I have ahead of me of organizing my great big box of photos. My daughter got me some of those photo boxes for getting my pictures all put together nicely and neatly. I hope she wants to help.
Having both cameras is going to be a big plus as an incentive for helping me get feeling better physically. I want to get out this spring and take pictures to put on my blog. And I still have a goal from ages past that has not be more than just an amateur photographer.
Well, I have been doing my homework. I am learning about megapixels and optical zoom. So far I have narrowed my choices down to 3 cameras available locally. One is the Kodak EasyShare Z885 8.1MP Digital Camera with 5X Optical Zoom & Image Stablization. Next is the HP 8 MP Photosmart Mz67v Digital Camera with 6X Optical Zoom & Image Stablization. Finally, there is another Kodak--the Kodak 10MP EasyShare V1003 with Image Stablization--it only has 3X Optical Zoom. Each camera has its pluses and minuses. So I am weighing the pros and cons of each camera and hoping with a little help from the people at the store, I will be able to make the right choice. Also the first two have movie mode so I can take videos, with sound. The last one, although it has higher megapixel quality, I am not sure it has the ability to do video. It doesn't say on the available info on the website I found it on. Then maybe tomorrow when I get to the store, they might have something that I didn't find on the website that is better for the price than any of these.
Either way, I can't wait to start taking pictures again. Come Monday, I hope to have pictures of one of my most favorite restaurants to put on here. I have an appointment to see my electrophysiologist and my daughter and I generally go there for lunch buffet after the appointment. It has become a regular activity about 4 times a year. The doctor and the appointment are about an hour away so it isn't somewhere we go often. Maybe I will even be able to get some photos of the food on the buffet. If you like Indian food, it will be sure to make your mouth water. Makes me hungry just thinking about it.

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