Kodak is getting out of the film business. This isn't breaking news, but as I came across my mother's film camera yesterday, I thought about how much has changed in the world of capturing images. The Canon camera that my mother uses looks like the first cell phones: big, clunky, and without a lot of perks and instant gratification that we demand now. The camera that I use is also a Canon, but a digital one. It actually belonged to my parents. M used his expertise to pick out a well made workhorse type camera that could fit in your pocket and take a little video, if you wanted it to. After a few weeks and several attempts to help them become more comfortable with the process of digital photography, I became the new owner. It's a good little camera, though, and has served us well over the past few years.
I am not a visual person. I wish I was. I wish I could see things the way that M sees them. I wish I could look at something and see the textures and the light instead of just a whole object. I try to memorize the little tidbits he mentions to me about reflection and flashes, but I think that part of it is just instinctual. He has a sense of how to make something become a beautiful photo. I have to work at it. I don't expect to become a professional. After all, he has the benefit of a degree from one of the best photo schools in the country and years of experience as a professional. But I don't want to be put in the same category as that guy who always gets his finger in the picture.
Looking at my camera made me realize how behind the times I am. The only photo processing software we have on our computer is Photoshop. I have no idea how to use it. NO IDEA. I see M clicking buttons, brightening teeth, erasing wrinkles and performing all kinds of magic tricks. I can't even prepare a photo for an e-mail. I am completely dependant on him for my photos. This is all going to change. I have set a goal for myself: become a better photographer and take more pictures. I love looking at photos from my childhood and I want that for Luke. I want some of those photos to be from my perspective, even if it is a little blurry or slightly out of focus.
M brought home a new work camera the other night. It's a common occurrence since each new model requires some time to learn how to use it and doing that during a photo shoot is not a good idea. It's the very latest and has a very cool low light feature. I picked it up and took a few test shots.
"You know, that's $5000", said M as he walked into the living room. I slowly put the camera down. I'll stick with my little Canon......for now.