22 Sep

New Camera, Yay!

Look at the new toy I just picked up: a mirrorless travel camera. None other than the Canon G7X.

best-cameras-for-travelling-mirrorlessIt’s definitely not the cheapest travel camera around, but in all honest it’s not bad. I was quite impressed at least. All the rumors about them being just as good as DSLRs – maybe even better – are true. For the same money I would not have gotten a DSLR that delivered the same quality photos as this one does.

Having said that, it does come with a learning curve. Not only is it lighter than a DSLR but it reacts to light slightly differently as well. At first it’s just straight up awkward, but it has grown on me.

Would I recommend it? If you do any sort of travel photography or simply want a light camera that takes exceptional pictures – heck yes.

If you just want to snap pictures of your pets while taking them for a walk, it might be a bit of an overkill. Of course there would be other cameras more suitable for that. My friend Regina talks a bit about the different mirrorless camera options here.

Again, I can’t recommend this camera enough, but if you just want a simple point and shoot camera, check out some of the cheaper alternatives on the page I just mentioned.

Having said that, I’m off to do a few more practice shoots before taking it on an official shoot tomorrow. Wish me luck!

15 Aug

Why I Love Photography

Everyone has a story to tell about how they got into photography. This is my story. The passion for photography clicked in me when I was a teenager. In fact, it was stoked by the photographs I saw in National Geographic and travel shows on television.

I used to spend hours just thumbing through old (and new) magazines, soaking in the beauty of the photographs, letting my eyes linger on the way the light seemed to play a cat-and-mouse game with the shadows, giving rise to stunning photographs that lingered on in my mind’s eye long after I shut the book. Watching travel shows on television, every scene would get re-visualized in my mind with a photo frame around it. I used to imagine visiting all these faraway places with my camera slung around my neck, clicking away to glory, and coming back home in an even greater blaze of glory!

Getting my first camera at the age of 16 was a game changer for me. My appetite for photography became insatiable. I started clicking pictures of everything and everyone, reading all the books I could find on photography in the library, subscribing to photography blogs and soaking in the tips and techniques like there was no tomorrow.

eBook Cover Photoshoot
My first professional photo shoot was for Konrad Braun to help him with his free eCover maker site. The pay alone got me hooked 🙂

I experimented with different gradients of light, with light and shade, with black and white and color. I had my siblings and friends pose as models for me to try out different angles and settings. I took my camera on every outing I went to and tried different styles and genres of photography.

When I started studying the masters of photography, I tried to emulate their styles. As I started becoming more confident in my own skin, I discovered that I had a latent inner style that distinguished me from the others.

While I continued to study and absorb all I could, I also started taking pictures more intuitively, going with the flow, and letting my heart take the lead. This led to my photographs becoming even better and memorable.
This was the time I decided to enroll in photography classes so that I could have a more professional training and be mentored by experts.

So why do I love photography? Here’s why!

  • It helps me explore and express my creative side. With the advent of digital photography, what was once an expensive hobby has now become accessible to all. I didn’t start off with an expensive DSLR, but still the joy I got from my humble point-and-shoot camera was delirious.
  • Photography helps open my mind. It drives me to look at things from different angles, which requires having different perspectives and being open minded. I find that has expanded to the rest of my life too and I can now think out of the box about different areas of my life.
  • Photography helps me to remember my life and the people in it, the places I visit, the things I love, in far greater detail, colour, and depth than if I had not taken a photograph! Being able to record memories is one major reason why I love photography.
  • Photography has expanded my view of the world and helped to me to see the underlying oneness in everyone.
    I love photography because it makes me feel one with nature or one with the people who are subjects of my photography. When I am composing a shot and focusing on how to get the best picture, I forget all about myself. I am able to transcend the limitations of my mind and body and merge with the subject.
  • Photography helps me to tell stories. These stories could be about places I have been to, people I have loved or found interesting, things that I find fascinating, etc.
  • I love photography because of the artistic freedom that I get from it. I can take a picture of anything and make it look even better with the way I manage the settings on my camera or with post-processing. This makes me feel very good about myself. I love how photography makes me feel more confident about myself and my place in the world.
  • I love photography because it is something that I can take with me wherever I go! I don’t need a license to take a photograph anywhere.
  • My camera is my best friend and I take it with me every time I step out of the house. Photography has helped me see new places, make new friends, discover unknown facets about myself. It has helped me make connections with the world, with people, and with myself.
  • I love photography because it makes people happy. When I share my photos with others and see the joy, wonder, and inspiration it brings to them, I feel great!