Sunday, March 31, 2013

March: Rent a Nikon D90 and a 50mm Prime Lens

Every month in 2013 I want to try something to improve my photography.

In January, I took my first photography class.

In February, I went on a mountain trip in very poor weather.

First of all, March flew by for me. It was quite the enjoyable month, although it was very chilly in the southeast. Since I am still debating (and often checking craigslist) my future camera options, I decided to rent a D90 for the weekend to see if I like it. If you will recall, I can't use a prime lens with my D60, but I wanted to see if an upgrade would be worth it. Here is what I learned:

1. I don't like battery grips. The rental came with one, and I wasn't sure if I could take it off. It made the camera body double the size, and it made it awkward. Obviously, it's suppose to make the camera easier to grip, but I don't think I will need one, unless I go professional.

2. I honestly thought that if I had a 50 mm prime lens (meaning it was fixed on 50mm and could not zoom in or zoom out) I would be able to walk up to a flower, stick the camera in it and shoot amazingly detailed closeup photos. Imagine my surprise and frustration when this was not the case. The camera went berserk and refused to shoot anything unless I backed up at least 6 inches.

So I emailed a D90 user, the amazing photographer who posts her lovely shots of snowflakes here and asked her what she used to take those pictures. She commented back almost immediately (thanks Tammie!) that she used a 105 mm lens. So I looked up that lens on amazon . . . wow, photography is not a cheap hobby.

3. So, feeling frustrated, and not really getting what I wanted out of the camera or the lens, I only played with it a little on Saturday. I took it hiking and took some shots similar to what I would take with my D60. Yes, the quality was better, but nothing that made me want to upgrade soon.

4. Then today, Easter Sunday, I broke out the camera and the 50mm again to take 900 pictures of my son. He is 15 months old, and always on the move. He began hunting for Easter eggs in the backyard and I clicked away. We took him to the park, and I clicked away. I even took pictures indoors with the flash.

And I love how ALL the pictures came out. The 50mm lens really freezes him, and the bokeh in the background came out gorgeous shot after shot. Yes, I fell in love with the lens before I fell in love with the camera, but I have to have an updated camera body to have the lens!

Luckily both the D90 and the 50mm lens can be found for excellent prices. As for the 105mm lens . . . well, there's always next year!

p.s. This is my 100th post - and I think it's fitting that a monthly project falls on the 100th!

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