Thursday, May 13, 2010


What is your age?...

Oh! Excuse me! I was talking to my camera. I would never DREAM of asking a person their age without a really important reason -even though I hear that certain people (Julie) are celebrating the big 3-0 today!

Happy Birthday, twin! The other day I showed my kids a picture of me when I was in high school and asked them who it was. They cried in one voice, "Aunt Julie!!" So you should feel good to know that you look like I did in highschool! WAIT! That might be a bad thing. I meant it as a compliment! You look great! That is what I mean!

All kidding aside!

Anyhow, back to the subject. My camera is 7 years old, and in the years of digital cameras, that is ANCIENT! Dog years are 7 to 1, but digital camera years are about 50 to 1. So mine is 350 years old! Ha! Shutters (ha! I crack myself up!) pretty good for his age, huh?
Seriously! Cameras are being updated so quickly that every couple of years they become old news. In fact, now you can get a camera with DOUBLE the mega-pixels as mine for about $150. Not a GOOD one, mind you! But double the clarity. I won't even TELL you what mine cost -and we got it on a REALLY good sale! It was the state-of-the art best camera when we got it.

Yet, after having it for so long, I still have not figured out how to use it properly! I ask Sweet Geek, and he says that our camera does that, but that level of technical maneuvering is beyond me. I want a camera that follows verbal commands. "Stay in focus!" "No flash!" "Take the picture right!" This should save a lot of time since I already yell the command out anyway!

SO, I was trying to take a picture of an afghan that I crocheted (kro-shayd). (On a side note, my computer underlined crochet as an incorrectly spelled word! I thought I might have gotten it wrong so I looked at the choices. I just don't think that "an afghan I crotched would get across what I am trying to express. Do you?)

Ok, back to business. I was trying to take this picture of this afghan. More about the afghan later, but it had been rainy and cloudy here. And since I HATE flash photography, I was trying to use natural light and THIS is how it turned out:

Can you even tell what color it is? It looks brown or black, and I ASSURE you it is NOT!

So I tried again, this time with the lamp on:
You can see a tiny hint of red, but simply not the effect I was looking for! GOODNESS! IF a blanket is full-blown scarlett, it should look that way in a picture!

OK, open the blinds. That should let in a little more light.
Not enough!

Rumple it up a little more! Then maybe more light will get on the blanket, and illuminate it's beauty!

Don't you LOVE my bed?, but you still can't see the blanket!

One more try:

Ok, I'll HAVE to use the flash. I don't like flash photography. It look artificial and can make almost everything/anyone look uglier that it/he/she is.

GAAAAACK! Proven once again! Bleck!
Oh, my! That is truly ugly. If I posted THIS picture of one of my favorite things, everyone would wonder WHY ON EARTH this is one of my favorite things! Yuck!

Then I remembered this picture my Sweet Geek helped me take a few years ago:
This picture is terrible! It is fuzzy, the lighting is orange, and ALL THREE of my kids are making faces. BUT, he did something to the camera. He turned a little dial to a tiny, and crude picture of a woman's profile.
I cannot show you a picture of it because it is on my camera! And that would be something like licking the small of your own back!
At the time he told me that it was the portrait setting. And when snapping this photo, the reason it is fuzzy is because the shutter stayed open longer and I had not yet learned how to brace myself so I would not move while the shutter was open.
Now, I have a brother that likes to dabble in photography, and a sister who is an EXTREMELY talented professional photographer (she is having her big 3-0 today!). You can see some of her work HERE. So I have had some exposure (Haha! I crack myself up!) to some picture-taking technical jargon, and there was something about a longer shutter time letting more light in and creating a lighter picture?... or something like that. So first I tried to re-set the shutter time with the menu, and could not figure out how to do it! So I turned the dial to the little woman's profile, and THIS is what came out:

Oops! Not still enough. Let's try again.

So this is what I learned:
You can "shed some light" (hehe!) on a person or item that you are taking a picture of by setting the camera to have the shutter open longer! When your light is limited compensate with shutter time.
But when you do this, make sure that you use a tripod or brace yourself to be completely still while the shutter is open.
I also learned that the area that is in focus is VERY narrow. I don't know the technical terms (Maybe someone who knows could help me out on that one), but everything closer and everything further away is fuzzy. You have a very narrow depth that will be in focus.

I am going to play with this a little more, and can't wait to see how they turn out. I will keep you posted with a new post! Haha! I crack myself up!

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