Monday, July 21, 2008

A brief history

So, I thought I would share a little history about myself and how I got into photography.

My father was always into cameras and photography. I remember him using his old Nikon ‘F’ for family portraits and such. I recall enjoying even using disposable cameras when we were on vacations when I was a kid and was always taking weird and wonderful shots. One day, when I was around 13 or 14, I wanted to use my dad’s camera. He wouldn’t let me (understandably :)). But he went digging in the basement and came up with something better than letting me use his camera…he gave me an old Olympus OM-1, in a vintage camera bag stuffed with goodies!! I couldn’t have been happier! Inside the bag was the camera with a 50mm f1.8 lens, a Makinon 80-200mm lens, cable release, some filters, an old copy of the National Geographic Photographers field guide, and an off camera flash mount! I couldn’t have been more excited. So I go buy some film and start shooting everything I can!

My best friend happened to have the same camera (in silver, so we could tell them apart) and he had a wide angle lens for his. So we would wander around my hometown, finding fun and exciting new places to take pictures! I still have a lot of them, so when I get a scanner, I may find the time to upload them. As I got older, and technology advanced, I got my hands on my first digital camera, a Panasonic DMC-F7. This camera was a little cheaper to operate, seeing as by now I was about 16 or so, and had more teenager-ish things to put my money towards ;). So I used this for awhile. It was a very good camera for its time, it had an excellent Leica lens and was great for macro shots. A year or so after I go that camera, my father had gotten a new digital camera, and I inherited his old one, a Nikon Coolpix 4300. This was an awesome camera. It had full manual control if I wanted it, excellent IQ and it was relatively small.

Now, I have never really known what I wanted to do in life, some people have it planned out from childhood. But I always knew I wanted to do something with photography, even if it was just to take a course in school for it to learn some fundamentals. Well, that wish came true in 2007. My lovely fiancĂ©, being the super thoughtful person she is, enrolled me in an online photography course through ICS Canada! When I am done, I will have a Career Diploma in Photography. The course is a little old school, but that’s okay, it covers developing and all the essentials on the fundamentals of photography (the stuff that never changes anyways). And, that’s why I wanted to upgrade to a DSLR, because I have a little more freedom to play around and experiment with pictures and not have to worry about wasting film and not knowing what the image looks like until I process it. Don’t get me wrong, I still love my OM-1 and will still use it when I want that nostalgic feeling.

So, before I got my D80, I had done extensive research on new cameras and thought I wanted to stick with Olympus. I had my heart set on the E-510. Then one day, we go to my parent’s house, and he had just bought a Nikon D60. I tried it out, and instantly loved how it felt in my hands and the layout of the menu and all the controls! So I flip-flopped back and forth with the idea of the Olympus E-510 or the Nikon D60. I went to my camera store and held the E-510, and it didn’t feel as nice in my hands, and I found the menu system not as intuitive. So I ruled that camera out. I went back to the drawing board, and started researching the Nikon’s. I took some more time with my dad’s D60, and while I liked it a lot, thought I might want something more advanced that would let me grow a little more into the camera and its functions. That’s when I found the D80. It had everything I wanted and then some. I went to the camera shop and held it. The decision was made right there. Roughly the same ergonomics as the D60, but a bit bigger, and more direct access to all the settings, plus a top LCD. Also, more autofocus points, and autofocus support for older lenses!

So, now the problem was funding. I had been laid off from my job at Dell in January. And we had just had our son, so money was a little tight to say the least. I started a camera fund, and put all my spare change into a container in the hopes of being able to put some money towards it by the end of the year. My birthday came around in May, and I asked if I were to get anything, it be a gift card to the camera shop. Well, at the time, I was spending too much time researching, and looking at lenses I wanted for a camera I didn’t even have yet! My fiancĂ© and my baby wanted me back. So she started a fundraiser. She sent out a letter to all our family asking to put in money so she could get me a gift card so I can finally get this camera. Well it worked! I got from work on my birthday, I had a vague idea of the fundraiser plan, so I was expecting a gift card, for maybe a couple of hundred dollars. I got lead upstairs, and there are 2 boxes on the bed. They are both bigger than a gift card. I am speechless at this point. I open them up as fast as I can. Inside, is the Nikon D80, 18-55 VR lens, am 8GB SDHC card, and a Lowepro camera case!! Holy crap. First I get the gift of our beautiful baby boy, then this! I am very lucky, to say the least. I think I said thank you to Dayna more times in the weeks to follow then I have ever said in my life. And the rest, as they say, is history :)

Thanks for reading my long post! As a reward, here are some new shots!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

a bit of a disappointing day

So, my local camera shop, Henry's, was having a big gift certificate giveaway today. they were giving out 99 gift certificates with values ranging from $10 to $500(!) to the first 99 people through the door! So, i wake up extra early (for a day off) and head out with book and mp3 player in hand. I got there at around 8:15am (doors open at 10am). I was the sixth person in line. I tried to not get my hopes up on getting the big gift certificate because I didnt want to jinx it. But in my mind I had visions of getting a lens, or a new camera bag, or the D80 battery grip! At around 9:15am, my fiance calls and offers to bring me some water and a couple of cookies, i accept. she packs up the baby and comes and meets me, and being the loving person she is, she offers to stand in line at the end and get another certificate for me! Anyways, i finally got in, and picked my gift certificate, hold my breath and open it, and its for $10!!! Ah well, there is still Dayna's, right?? Well, she got a $10 dollar one as well. So, in the end we got $20 bucks. No lens for me. I got a lens hood for my 18-55 lens, and a Giottos rocket blower to go with my lens pen. Better than nothing, but i was a little disappointed to say the least!

I took a couple of shots over the last few days, mostly of Dayna and Levi. Here are a couple:

Well, thats if for today! I am trying to make it downtown to take some building shots and the likes, hopefully i can do that this coming week! And if anyone wants to donate to my cause, let me know (ha ha)

Monday, July 7, 2008

andrew haydon park and a spider

finally got around to uploading some pictures i took at the park! have a look..also, while eating breakfast, i saw an awesome looking spider on the kitchen window and i had to take his picture as are the links

I find myself taking more and more macro shots all the time...i definetly want a macro lens as one of the first ones i am going to buy! so it will be the sigma 150mm macro or the sigma 10-20 as my next lens! i can't wait :)

i have the majority of this week off, so in between hanging out with my fiance and son, i will try to make some wallpaper sized backgrounds of some of my pictures and put them up for anyone who wants to d/l them!

Sunday, July 6, 2008

just a quick note

me and the family went to the park on saturday, and i got some cool shots. i will put them up when i get back from work in the morning, but here is a neat one of my fiance by a waterfall i thought i would share! im a lucky guy :)

check back later for some more shots! have a good night

Friday, July 4, 2008

Macro photos

Gooday folks
so i finally got around to putting up some macro photos on my flickr page. So here they are, go check them out, feel free to let me know what you think. These were all taken with the 18-55 kit lens, handheld. One of these days i am going to get a macro lens :)
Here are 2 of the on either one to go there respective flickr page.

Or, click here to see the whole set!

on a side note, all images are shot raw (nef) format then if needed, post processed in capture nx2 or photoshop 7. the images i upload are then resized.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

the plan for this page

okay, if anyone is reading this, they are probably wondering why do i have a blog? who is this guy? and why should i care?
frankly, i cant answer those questions for you (i do know who i am though)....
but i can tell you what i want to do with this space.
I am a camera and photography nut, so with this page i wanted to be able to track what i am photographing and post those pictures.. i would also like to take certain pictures and make them available as desktop wallpaper, and if people become interested in my work, i can offer prints as well!
i will also plan to write some reviews on equipment as i get it. I have been shooting film for a long time and just got my hands on a Nikon D80 with 18-55 kit lens. I will write a review of that soon.
as i get more glass i will talk about that too. its kinda hard to drop all my money into my camera with a 6 month old and a wedding coming up :)

so thats the plan, of course, every now and then i will have to talk about stuff that bugs me or i like in true blog fashion.
thats it for now, time to enjoy my weekend
take care

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

off to work

i am leaving for work,
look at my flickr page though and you can see some shots i have taken in the is updated quite frequently and i am working on a batch of macro shots to put up in the near future.


and here is a pic of levi and my dog bailey


Hello Internet
this is a place i will use to talk about stuff going on, but mostly about photography, and links to the pictures i have taken!
i am not going to write much now, because i just got home from working a 12 hour night shift and my baby is crying!

talk to you soon