About Me

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Nebraska, United States
A would-be stay at home mom working full-time as a teacher. I teach at my old Highschool, working side-by-side with my own teachers. I blog to keep the Texan grandparents updated and chronicle our life for future reference. (In other words, I don't have a real baby-book or diary.) Comments make my day. Thanks for stopping by! kimlepper at gmail.com

Friday, February 12, 2010

Anything you can do I can't do better...

I've been quite frustrated with my camera recently. I see all these blogs with awesome shots taken and I think, "Wow, I wish my camera could do that." Then I get frustrated- we invested a good $200 in the camera this summer to be able to take (and store) photos of our new addition.

It's a Canon Powershot A1000is. It has lots of buttons and settings. I was so sure I'd have all these fancy photos- never needing to invest in a professional photographer. I even read a book by a famous local photographer, learning such sophisticated things as "rule of thirds" and what all the buttons and setting on the camera do.

Eight months later... my pictures...to be honest? They stink.

The camera may as well have one setting- "Auto"

I mean, who really has the time (or brain power) to flip the camera to the appropriate setting?

When baby is doing something cute, if I have time to grab the camera without her seeing me and then turn it on without her hearing it and then point it at her while cuteness is still in action- I call myself lucky.

So when baby decided to sit up AND play for the first time the other day (the combo is the key here) I grabbed the camera. She saw the infamous red light and ignored it- woohoo! Time for me to try and get creative.

Hm...which setting should I use? Wait- what do all these mean again?

What's this camera with a heart in it? Or the guy standing next to the letter A suppose to be? And the capital P? That's stands for "Picture", right? Then what are all the other ones?

After 5 minutes, this was the extent of my abilities:

Flash off:
Flash on:
Or, check out these two talents combined:

Flash off:
Flash on AND camera rotated!:

Pathetic, right? You can see why I was so frustrated with the camera. "This stupid flash washes everything out!" I complained to my 8-month-old, who dutifully ignored me.

Later that same day I took the same child and same camera to my parent's place, where Amanda, my 14-year-old sister was chilling. I showed her Samantha's newest talent of being cute AND sitting up. I sighed and decided to take a couple of shots of them chatting with my pathetic camera:

Amanda's ignorance radar must of been triggered and after giving me this look

She took hold of the reigns.

After a couple of clicks she laughs and says, "HaHA! I love this! Check it out"

What the...?How'd she...?

I check the camera to see what magical setting combo she used...Hm...same I was using...surely it was a fluke...I mean, I knew she was talented...

How is she doing this?!?
I can't take these kinds of shots when I'm LOOKING into the camera...


I did manage to take some better-ish pictures myself, but my talents don't seem to move beyond "point-and-shoot. I'd like to take the credit for these

but truth be told, they're only good because of Amanda's facial expressions...

So, obviously the problem is not with the camera...And really I should be excited to have a budding professional in the family...but the sibling rivalry in me just bubbles up to the surface wanting to scream,
"Yeah, but you can't bake, so THERE!"


Kelli @ writing the waves said...

Those pics are too cute. I have the same frustration with my camera, especially with indoor shots. I feel like I need to take a class or something. haha :) Happy Follow Friday! I'm adding you to my reading list!

Granddad said...

OK...secret number 1: there was better natural lighting at your parent's house. Secret #2 - between Amanda's PRACTICED talent and Jeremy's knowledge (he used to sell cameras..remember?), you too can become more proficient in taking pictures. ALL cameras with forward facing flash will wash out pictures unless you work with shutter speed and aperture settings...something that you can easily learn....really! Even then, a bounce flash is the REAL solution....

Miss Fanny said...

I love your photos! I am a wannabe photographer still trying to figure it all out too. Don't give up, you are doing great and what adorable subjects. Found your blog on Friday Follow.

Granddad and Grandma said...

Oh yeah...secret #3. The dark bookcase in your apartment combined with a darker room caused the camera to use more flash than needed. The lighter background carpet combined with better natural light at your parents' house made for better readings....thus endeth the lesson. As for Amanda's remarkable "natural eye" for composition.....hmmmmm....you may have to work harder there.... On the other hand, we enjoy ALL the pictures you post...

shea Bates said...

We are kindred! My favorite saying is: If you want to make God laugh, tell him your plans for the future!. And, I too want my pictures to be just as super fab as some of the ones I see on other blogs. And, I too can't work my camera...at all! And mine is a fairly cheap one with no special doo-dad's. I can't imagine what I would do with a fancy one:)

Following from Friday:)


Megan said...

Awww! I'm so flattered you like my pics. One thing I have learned is that it is allllll about the natural lighting. Stick your kids by a window, turn off the flash, and good pics will follow. :-)

Oh, and Amanda is funny. Love those pics!

Khrys { Mom of 3 Dolls } said...

My secret is keep shooting, eventually there's a good pic in the pile...

I'm stopping by from Friday Follow. Have a fun weekend!

misssrobin said...

Okay, so Amanda can take pictures. But nobody really likes her anyway so there! Nya

Kim said...

This is funny. I'm not trying to capture toddlers anymore - the things I "shoot" stay still and I continue to have problems :).

CK said...

Oh my goodness! I totally cracked up reading this! First of all... on the difficulties of getting fancy cameras to take good pictures, I have to say Amen SITS-tah! And on how crazy and endearing all those facial expressions are... Amen, SITS-tah! They are hilarious and great!

Jenn Erickson said...

Aw, don't be so hard on yourself. It looks like your sister's ease and confidence with the camera rubbed off on you, and that the simple change in mindset and comfort made a big difference in the outcome of your photography. I think two of the biggest keys to great photos are being fearless and not over-thinking it. This style of photography would have been seen as potentially wasteful and reckless back in the days of film, but now with digital, you can be bold and experimental and simply delete the photos that you don't like. Don't give up!

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