Hello! I’m heading out to Salt Lake City this week to attend my first ever photography conference! I’ll be practicing my shooting skills at Click Away. If you’re there too, I hope to meet you! Here’s a peak at my photo-taking history and journey leading up to now.
Recently, I was going through my childhood photo albums to prep them for scanning and long-term archiving, and I noticed sometimes there would be photos of my parents and younger brother, but without me in them. I realized that as the older sister, I was the one tasked with taking the photos. Based on the years on the albums, I was probably about 7 years old.
By Christmas of age 8, my parents gave me my own camera for Christmas. Film, of course, was the rate-limiting step back then, so I didn’t take that many pictures. I was probably allotted to one roll per vacation.
I used this camera for various snapshots and school trips up until I was 17.
When I was 17, I went digital. It was the summer of 2001. I had my first summer job and my own spending money. I bought myself a HP PhotoSmart 315. (aside: thank goodness for metadata because I do not have superhuman memory) So high-tech for 2001. It took four AA batteries and everything. Unfortunately, the batteries died so quickly that I still hadn’t gotten used to taking tons of photos yet. Also, I didn’t yet grasp the concept of saving in high-resolution format.
By 2003, it was time to upgrade. Got myself a Nikon E2500. This was seriously the coolest because the lens could flip around in various directions, including towards myself for the old-school selfie. This was the camera I used throughout college and it was just so handy!
2007: Another upgrade. Nikon Coolpix S50. So sleek and compact. It was perfect for the plentiful trip and vacation photos I would be taking.
Meanwhile, the camera phone technology was advancing. Back when camera phones were crazy pixelated, I figured I’d stick to the brick cell phone and a point-and-shoot camera. When I finally got a smartphone, that changed for me as well. I started with an iPhone 3GS in 2009. I still didn’t take many photos with this phone. It just wasn’t super handy for me. With the next upgrade for an iPhone 4S in 2011, I seriously increased cellphone photo frequency and quality. Using the volume up button to release the shutter changed my world. Now I was definitely taking way more phone photos.
In early 2012, I started to read more about photography, but I still just wanted a handy point and shoot. Combine this with a good sale at the local big box retailer and I got the Canon PowerShot SX260 HS. I still use this camera for the bulk of my snapshots. It really opened the door for me in terms of manual controls and I started to actually learn the details related to the exposure triangle and doing more than just using the pre-loaded filters from the camera.
And as I learned even more, I decided it was time to take the plunge. In early 2013, I bought a Canon EOS 60D. I’m totally still learning with this one. I’m also suffering from “gear acquisition syndrome” (we can talk about that some other time…).
But really, the camera I use the most? The one that’s attached to me everywhere I go? The one that can instantaneously put pictures up on the line? The iPhone 5S. Rocking hard since September 2013.
Overall, I love taking photos. I love trying to find new angles and try to see what I can capture. It’s amazing to look back and reflect on how I grew into this hobby. And really, it’s totally not about the gear. Technology totally changes the way we take photos now, and it’s awesome. Digital lets us experiment with stuff and document our everyday lives like never before. Pretty cool.
Do you remember when and how you started taking your own photos? Are you the family historian or does someone else fill that role?
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