Sunday, February 20, 2011


So on Valentine's Day this year, M and I got each other gifts. Normally we're just candy and card type people, but we had a little money after paying some bills so I got M a Kindle to take with us on Spring break. She's an avid reader and a daily newspaper consumer. So this will allow her to take lots of reading with her without packing a lot. M got me a new digital camera, the Canon Rebel xs that I've been lusting after in one form or another since I saw my friend Larena's a number of years ago.

So M got me the Rebel kit that comes with one lens. A friend of ours has a Cannon regular film camera and let me borrow a bigger lens of hers and it actually fit my camera! So M and I went to Assateague to try out the camera using both lenses, so I could figure out if the one it came with would be enough for most types of pictures (it won't be) or if I should get a lens more like the one I borrowed (I should). The lens it came with (18mm-55mm) is fine for close-ups and within a few feet of the camera. It doesn't zoom far enough to get mid-range to long-distance shots, like the borrowed lens (70mm-300mm). M got me this camera to address the issues I was having with my current camera. First, it sucked the life out of batteries and took forever to come back after taking a picture, so that I missed a lot of action shots waiting for the camera to let me take the next picture. The other thing that bothers me about my old camera is that I like to take nature shots, then blow them up and edit them on PhotoShop. The old camera doesn't take sharp enough shots, when I blow them up, they get blurrier the larger I go. This Cannon takes unbelievable shots, in rapid succession, with a stabilizer in the lens to reduce shake and keep images sharp. I don't know if you can do it from this blog, but if you can, click on the photo and then zoom in on the surfer's face. At least on my home computer, I could zoom in on the surfer's face, see him really close up, and it was still really sharp. The surfer was over 100 yards out in the ocean from where I was standing on the beach.

This next shot was especially exciting for me when I zoomed in on it. I arranged a bunch of purple shells on the sand, and when I zoomed in on the picture, I could see each grain of sand. The grains looked like colored glass balls. I think this is going to be the first shot I blow up to print. The colors and clarity are amazing, and I haven't even hit it with the contrast tools on PhotoShop yet. As an aside for Marilyn, I will get your Fall tree photos to you, been delayed. I will probably get to them by the end of summer. Yeah, I'm already scheduling my projects that far out. Sad isn't it? ;-)

This last shot was my test to see how sharp a picture the camera could take at something in the far distance that was moving. It was really windy at the beach and this flag was flapping all over the place. The shot, as you can tell, came out nice and clear with no blur from the movement of the flag. So overall, I'm really happy with the camera. I'm still reading my way through the instruction manual and figuring out the settings and how best to take different types of pictures. Expect some artsy-fartsy shots before the year is out. :-)


tweetey30 said...

That is a great gift.. I like your new gift..

BTW..I had an idea to run past you and jeff was the one to suggest it really. You said school colors for dorms yes.. i am looking at football colors too. Like the Packer colors with Packers in the middle of them..

but that is the idea that was passed on to me from my hubby. he thinks we can do the emblem or the name of the team.. it has to be one or the other or else it will be to big and too expensive for people to buy..

Vancouver Voyeur said...

Tweets, good idea, as long as you don't infringe on trademarks. My mom crocheted scarves in team colors and would put the team "letter" on them, that way she wouldn't get trouble for using their name, logo, or likeness. You might look into that there. My mom did a Packers scarf for M's mom and people in Ohio where my mom currently lives were buying Ohio State scarves as fast as she could make them. There was a rugby team that commissioned my mom to do matching team scarves for the whole team, of course, then the fans wanted scarves too. I would put feelers out in your community and see if there's an interest in scarves or blankets for school or NFL teams. Good luck!

Libellule said...

awesome shots and what a nice gift!

I lived in Ohio before moving to NC. My father and his wife lived there since I was little.

By the way, I am now addicted to Florence + the Machine!

Vancouver Voyeur said...

Libellule, glad you liked Florence. She does grow on you. My mom and sister currently live in Ohio, outside of Columbus, and we all used to live in Charlotte. Small world, huh?

Libellule said...

Cool. Well my Dad and his wife lived in Zanesville. I am driving up there with my oldest Springer this weekend to visit my Dad's widow.

I lived in Athens where I completed my MA at OU and am now in Chapel Hill/Durham.

Yes, it is a small world!

OldOldLady Of The Hills said...

Looks like you got a Winner of a Camera!! Congratulations...!

I appreciate your words, and I understand you are trying to help me, but, nothing is going to help me through this but for me to feel what I feel for as long as it takes me. I have been down this road many many MANY times---and this time is probably one of the hardest---But, one must have time to feel the true loss---At least, that is the truth for me.
I haven't dismissed all the great times or things about Betty....But,
It Is Painful That She Died! It is not even two weeks! Please, allow me my process and my pain, my dear.

Vancouver Voyeur said...

Naomi, sorry, my intent was not to rush you.

Knock knock - it's cancer! said...

Oooh, what great gift givers you both are! I just love it.

And you take some fantastic shots.

Sooo... do you DO weddings? lol. Just kidding. (I think)



Vancouver Voyeur said...

Michelle, I have in fact taken pictures at weddings before, but they are definitely not professional.

Larena said...

wow you are going to far surpass my ability but I still have a bigger lens :)

Vancouver Voyeur said...

Larena, I was looking through some of your old photos yesterday that you sent me. I thought when I looked at them, "wow, what a good eye." So I have a long ways to go.

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