Monday, February 21, 2011

Makeover Monday: Making Your Camera More You-ser Friendly!

Over a year ago I upgraded from my humble Kodak EasyShare to a Nikon P90. It's not a DSLR, but its a vast improvement over the camera I was using to capture all of life's greatest moments (though I still have my old one as it holds a great deal of sentimental value for me!). I have LOVED this camera with all my heart, despite the fact that its sometimes hard to get properly exposed photos indoors, and even harder to get that really great background blur, without a great deal of distance between my subject and its background.  And while I've entertained the idea of purchasing a new camera (just 18 months later) I feel like I still have ALOT of work to do before upgrading.  So when I have these thoughts, I remind myself  that my current camera has been my trusty companion through my journey to capture photos I LOVE and instead of replacing it for better camera, I should embrace it as an extension off my creative self and focus on becoming a better photographer.

So how does one go about creating this type of "bond" with their camera...?  After a great deal of consideration, I came up with the following ideas to help us make our cameras more "you-ser friendly":

Have a Way to Carry Your Camera With You That is Both Practical and Comfortable 

Having your camera with you at all times is a good first step. Being prepared to capture all of those perfect moments--instead of saying, "Wow that would have made a great photo..." will not only improve your chances of capturing those "perfect shots," but will also strengthen the relationship between you and your camera.  You will become more comfortable with using your settings and pretty soon all of those technical details will become like second nature.

Photo Source: Donna Downey

Start by finding a bag that you can carry with you at all times, like the raw canvas camera bags from Donna Downey (pictured above) that you can design youself, or even a beautiful over-sized vintage handbag like this one used by Elsie Flannigan.  Using a bag thats comfortable and fits your personal style will make carrying your camera with you feel like less of a burden and more like an everyday routine.

Photo Source: Design Sponge

Maybe a bag isn't really practical for you, then why not consider making a fun camera strap, like this awesome DIY Neck Tie Camera Strap from Design Sponge or purchasing a funky ready-made strap like this one from Capturing Couture.

Learn the Ins and Outs of YOUR Camera

For some people referencing their manual from time to time may be enough, for others you might want to consider taking a class that will not only help you to understand your camera's settings better, but also help you to understand how all of those buttons and knobs fit into the grand scheme of capturing photos you'll love. 

Photo Source: Get It Scrapped

I recommend Katrina Kennedy's "The Very Basics" class available at Get It Scrapped! Or Karen Grunberg has a great series of videos on her blog Karenika, which offers tons of very useful info!

Use the Right Equipment to Help You Capture Photos You'll Love 

While it may not be practical to go out and buy all of the things you think you may need to capture beautiful pictures...there may be a few essentials that you should consider.  And whether you buy them or make them yourself, having the right equipment can help you to have more pride in your photos and more faith in your camera!  To get an idea of the products you may benefit from owning give this article a look. Or check out this awesome article featuring 10 DIY Projects to Improve Your Photography!  Besides featuring fun step-by-step visuals, this article could save you a lot of money, while giving you access to more than just the essentials!

Sometimes our thoughts of replacing our cameras can be justified.  However, the next time you find yourself on the verge of replacing your trusty sidekick, first consider how you and your current camera can overcome your differences and team up to take better photos!

Looking forward to seeing you next Monday for more great makeover tips!


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