Thursday, January 27, 2011

Camera Cursed

A lot of little things have happened recently, and I meant to share some of them on here, complete with photos. But most of those pictures had to get scrapped, after I made a startling realization: my camera is a total piece of junk! It used to be a great camera. A wonderful camera. I'm certainly no photographer. I really have no clue what dials to turn or settings to choose to make pictures look nice when there are different amounts of light or movement, or whatever else. But this camera was magical. It just took beautiful pictures all by itself. And even the "special features" were really user-friendly, so I could figure out what to change in some circumstances to get a slightly better shot. For the duration of this story, I'll refer to this camera as my Canon (since, duh, that was the brand).

One day, after about a year and a half of excellent service, the lens decided it didn't want to telescope out when the camera was turned on. It made this awful grinding noise as it tried to come out, but always stopped halfway, turned around, and went back in. The screen read simply "lens error," and nothing I tried would make it work again. I took it back to the store (Best Buy. ugh), where I was informed that the warranty had expired (don't things ALWAYS break just after the warranty expires?!), and that if it could be fixed, it would cost some ridiculous amount, not even worth the cost of the camera. That I should just buy a new one. ugh. I hate this disposable society we live in! Things should not be made to be unfixable!

Anyways, I reluctantly bought a new camera. A rather cheap one, not as nice as the Canon. This was my Samsung. I figured it would be a temporary solution. I felt like I couldn't last for months without a camera at all. So I got a low-end one, in hopes that I could start saving up money to buy a really nice one down the road. But I didn't anticipate that before that happened, I would end up getting married, and have to stop spending money on unnecessaries.

Anyways, the Samsung is a terrible camera. I regret ever buying it. The most frustrating of its deficiencies is when you're trying to take a picture of people who are backlit. The camera registers that there is a lot of light coming towards it, so it REFUSES to use the flash. Which means that in your photograph, you see just the dark silhouettes of your subjects against a bright background. grr. I used that camera for a long time, always frustrated with it.

Then sometime early this summer, I was so desperate, I decided to give my beloved Canon one more shot. I think I actually prayed that it would somehow miraculously work again. I dug it out of the box in the basement which I affectionately term my "electronics graveyard," and hit the "on" button. And the little lens telescoped out, smooth as could be. No "lens error" anymore!! I was ecstatic, and began taking lots of pictures again, so pleased that I once again had a great camera, and didn't even have to spend any money.

But alas, things were not to remain so perfect. I'm not sure when it started happening....but that Canon was secretely taking awful pictures under my nose for months. I really don't understand how I missed it. But now when I look back at photos I took of Sly in the hospital, it makes me want to cry (note that I say "want to." But I refrain from crying, because's silly to let yourself get upset about things like that). The quality is AWFUL. The pictures are all so grainy.



sooo grainy

This really only because clear when I recently received a shipment of photos I had printed through Snapfish. The ones taken with my Canon looked terrible compared to the ones printed from the files given us by our doula, Bethany [ standing with me in the second picture above]. Her pictures are a billion times better, as below.

Okay, I look terrible in this picture, but I suppose I'm allowed to, since I'd just given birth. But I love the expression on Tom's face. He looks like an excited little kid, saying, "look at what we just made!"

It may not be as easy to tell on a computer screen, but when printed, it's very clear how low the quality is on my pictures. Seriously, how did it take me five months to notice this?? So, with much disapointment, I have been forced to retire the Canon yet again, and break out the Samsung. Sigh.

I think what it mostly comes down to is this: I am a terrible photographer. I really don't know what I'm doing, and probably don't have the patience to fool around with all the settings every time I want to take a pictures. That's why I search for a magical camera that will just do it all for me. But even if such a camera exists, I can't spend the money on a new one now. So I need to just be content with this Samsung.

And wow, that whole post ended up being just about cameras. I swear, when I started, I was planning to write about all those little events I mentioned at the beginning. Ah, well.

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