Themed Weekend: Photography

I get about 1 good picture for every 10 that I take.

3-years-old-november-2009

My ratio is high because my models are so strikingly beautiful.

8-months-old-november-2009 3-years-old-november-2009-2

That said, my pictures don't always turn out how I envision because...

  1. My house is not at all conducive to picture-taking.
  2. My backyard is teensy-tiny and kinda blah.
  3. I am almost always holding a baby while taking pictures.
  4. I've never read my camera's manual.

I may not be able to immediately change the first three (and, really, I don't want to change #3 because...seriously...who would want to put down a baby who is that cute?), but I can change the fourth. This weekend, I determine to read my camera's manual. It's been on my to-do list for the longest time, but now I'm going to make it a reality.

Because ::

  • I want to take spectacular, frame-worthy pictures.
  • I am fascinated by the art of photography.

I know I will never be able to fully capture my girls' tenacious spirits, sparkling personalities, and hauntingly beautiful eyes in pictures...but I'd like to try.

3-years-old-november-2009-3 8-months-old-(almost)

Stay tuned for photography-related articles, product reviews, and giveaways.

YOUR TURN: Have you read your camera's manual?

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37 comments on “Themed Weekend: Photography”

  1. We got an SLR before we had #1...I still haven't read the manual. I KNOW there are so many things my camera can do that I am unaware of. We wanted to get a great camera so we didn't miss the priceless expressions and emotions that are so easily missed with a plain digital camera. I have learned a lot so far, but can only imagine what type of pictures I may get if I read the manual ;)

  2. I have! It helped me to understand the features/settings better. Then again our camera is pretty basic...one day I would love to own a DSLR.

  3. I have read my manual but only by chance. My Hubby started reading it one day and I asked a question and then he read the whole thing to me and we played with the camera to check out the settings. It ended up being a lot of fun.

  4. No I haven't read the manual...I hate reading manuals of any kind. I usually read them after owning the piece of equipment for a number of years. They are just so boring! Who writes these things? They remind me of taking Calculus or something!
    Your children are truly beautiful and SOO photogenic. Congratulations on your adorable family.

  5. Nope, haven't read it. I only read the manual when I can't figure something out or what to know how to do something, like color accent. I really should read it, it might help with quality of my pictures.

  6. Never! The best picture taking advice I've ever gotten is as follows:
    1. turn off the flash!
    2. get closer to the subject (don't rely so much on zoom!)
    3. take a BUNCH of pictures (easy to do with a digital camera

    I follow these rules and I get some decent ones. I'd probably have even better luck if I utilized more of the special features my camera has!

  7. when we bought our camera i was all gun hoe to read it and i think i made it about half way through. it currently sits in my finish reading pile. occasionally i'll wonder about something and grab it to look up the answer....but that's pretty much it.
    thanks for the reminder.

  8. Nope! I haven't read the manual. BUt I did take a class at Jones Photo that was useful.
    The best tip I've learned by just using my camera is to take pictures in bright natural light.
    The best tip I read somewhere else that might help in your backyard is to throw a blanket, sheet, cloth swatch over the wall, on the ground, over the play house, etc and viola a new backdrop.
    I also have a secret wish to go to La Placita and take photos with their vibrant walls as the backdrop.

  9. My husband bought me a new camera last year, and ofcoarse he has read both his and my camera's manual. I still haven't read mine! I keep telling him I will, he is a little tired of answering every question or fixing every problem I have (:

  10. No, but I really really should!! I am in the market for a new camera...trying to decide SLR vs non...Thoughts anyone? I would love an SLR but am afraid it will be too bulky and i want video capabilties!!

  11. I HAVE read the manual- but I love to read manuals & I LOVE photography! (almost majored in college)
    Best of luck getting through yours this weekend!
    It's a funny topic for me because baby boy 2.0 arrives in just a few weeks- I'd love a new camera and our bigger boy just did something to ours to make the lens cover stop retracting- THIS MORNING!
    OH NOOO!!

  12. I usually get a lot of good pictures. I find that my picnik is priceless in turning a so-so photo into a marvelous shot, too.

    I've read the manual AND the dummies version too. If not, I wouldn't be taking many pictures with it. DSLR's are totally new to me.

    Nell

  13. Guilty! I have read only parts of the manual, like when I get stuck! But I think it's a great idea. I look forward to seeing your photography as you try new things. Your models are pretty darned inspirational! Have fun.

  14. I am not very knowledgeable when it comes to our digital camera. It is an older model and I really haven't taken the time to read the manual!
    Shame on me..... Cindi

  15. Shame on me...no, I haven't. I actually don't know where it is. My camera's not all that spectacular. I'm saving up for a nicer one, and then I promise to read every last page of the manual (well, maybe most of the pages).

  16. I love photography! It's amazing to see the quality pictures that people are able to produce. I have read my camera manual, however...I don't get it. I'm one of those that I just have to learn on my own. KWIM?

    I'd like to invest in an SLR. Wow, the photos are just rockin'. Someday, someday.

  17. I have looked over my cameras manual, but haven't completely read it. We just have a cannon point and shoot. I REALLY want an slr, but for now I am trying to be content with what I have. And when I want really good pictures I go to one of my friends who does have an slr and let them take our pictures. But I can dream that one day I will have that really nice camera with a big fat lens :)

  18. I have not read our camera manual either....my husband has read some of it, and knows way more about the DSLR than me. For now, I use the automatic setting, but I definitely want to spend some time learning how to use all the cool settings! But as you said, who really has the time to sit down and read a manual?!

  19. That's funny! Reading the manual has been on my list for a while now! I planned to read it during our last road trip and then accidentally left it at home. My deadline is the week before Christmas -- I want to be able to capture some great shots with the tree in the background.

  20. Nope. Never. But if I had a good camera I'd do it. I feel like ours is okay, but it's not totally worth the time reading the manual. I want a good one!

  21. Great theme! I'm excited to learn more about photography. And no I have not read our manual, even though it's not especially big or overwhelming. We couldn't figure out how to get rid of the red eye reduction setting last week, and I said I would read the manual - haven't done it yet though!

  22. I read my camera manuals before I even charge the batteries and i go back to my dslr manual frequently. But the classes that I have taken help me the most- especially if the instructor uses a Nikon (like me).

  23. Hey Steph, he doesn't have any how-to manuals or anything, but if you'd like some inspiration, my hubby's photography website is pretty stellar: http://www.aaroncphotography.com
    He's attempting to go into it full-time, and it is scary but oh-so-exciting!
    Keep up the good work, darlin'. OH and you might find a picture of my daughter wearing the Sugarplum dreams princess dress for Halloween that I won on your site!! :)

  24. I'm excited about this theme. I only have a point-and-shoot right now. I get some decent pics, but I really want to invest in a DSLR as soon as possible--maybe by the time a second baby comes along.
    How true that we can never fully capture our kids' spirits and personalities in a picture, no matter how good the camera or the photographer. But it is so worth the effort anyway. In our home, our framed pictures of family are our favorite decorations. It's like all our favorite memories hanging in the hallway.
    I love the pic of your little baby on her stomach holding herself up. What an adorable little face. I would never put her down either. :-)

  25. Yay for photography! I have read my camera manual but maybe it's time to read it again since I've actually been using it recently. Although the most helpful stuff I've read for improving my photos has been tips from other bloggers.

    PS. I especially love the pictures of Big sister above where she's peeking over her shoulder and looking through the window. I want to try a through the window shot myself soon, although I'm not sure where I'll find a suitable window...

  26. I am very excited about this weekends theme. :) Photography is something that is very dear to me.

    Yes, I have gone through my camera's manual and found it helpful. But even more helpful is the DVD "Beyond the Green Box". This DVD is amazing and taught me a lot about how to use my DSLR. The other really important thing that I did was to learn what the light meter was and how to use it. Understanding that will drastically change how you take pictures. :)

    I can't wait to see the rest of your posts.

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