Before Christmas, I put out a call on Facebook for DSLR recommendations. The response was a little overwhelming, and I unintentionally started a Canon VS Nikon war. I knew nothing about photography; I didnâ€™t even know what DSLR meant. But I realized to be an upstanding travel blogger I would have to expand my skill set. Plus after reviewing the MatadorU Travel Photography Course and following the work of people like Lola Akinmade and Paul Sullivan, I was itching to try it myself.
Thank gawd for Boxing Day Sales, amiright?
So I went with the Canon EOS Digital Rebel XS. I bought the body, standard 55 mm lens, camera bag, and a 75-300 mm zoom lens. And when it showed up on my doorstep, I had no idea what to do with it.
The learning curve is a steep one, and I fear becoming a photography snob since everyone is doin’ it these days. Kickass cameras make it easy. When I first started flipping through user manuals, my head exploded. Wtf does aperture mean? Why is ISO so important? I had an embarrassing moment where I emailed my colleague Dan freaking out about a spot on my cameraâ€™s mirror, which actually turned out to be on my viewfinder because it wasnâ€™t showing up in my images. Durrr.
Iâ€™m also learning that the hobby ainâ€™t cheap. According to the Photography Gods, I need a wide angle lens. The blocky, massive bag I bought also wonâ€™t cut it while travelling, nor will it do anything to limit my douchebag factor. I need to buy a good, discreet bag, clearly.
But Iâ€™m having fun. I find myself paying more attention to details I wouldnâ€™t normally observe. What other excuse could I find to drag myself to the eastern tip of North America on a freezing winter day to capture the scariest waves ever?
If you can’t commit to a course, here’s a lovely article from my friend Michael Hodson where he asks top travel photographers, “What makes a good photograph?”
If you’re a seasoned photographer, throw some tips at me. Teach me, wise ones.