Friday, January 9, 2009

Thinking About Photography

I'm signed up to take Dan Iverson's nature photography seminar through the Northfield Public Schools' Community Services Division (and featured on the cover of their latest brochure) on January 24. I am looking forward to it, despite the fact that according to Jim Gilbert's Minnesota Nature Notes January 24 is only a day away from what is statistically the coldest day of the year. I'll hope for a day that pulls the mean up a notch or two. I just went to look up the course description online, but was briefly distracted by seeing that Brent Kivell and Karen Madsen are teaching a series of one-night classes on light-saber duelling, for ages 8 and up. What a truly brilliant idea. I know a 9-year-old who will think he has died and gone to heaven when he hears about this. Brent and Karen, you rock. (I already knew that, knowing both Brent and Karen in musical contexts and Brent in a professional one).

Back, after this brief digression, to nature photography. The session is described thus:
See the winter world through the photographer’s lens. Professional photographer Dan Iverson will teach participants fundamentals of nature photography and immerse them in photographic field survey of St. Olaf College’s natural lands. Discover the overlooked beauty in a chilly world blanketed in snow. Participants will reconvene to warm up over hot chocolate and discuss topics like ISOs and f/stops. Bring camera and dress for the weather.
My dad taught me a bit about photography. He took some lovely black and white photos. I don't have many at this point; these are two from our time in Kenya, where I was born, showing my laughing young mother in one and my bespectacled 4-or-5-year-old self looking out of our Peugeot in the other.

An e-mail from today alerted me to a new camera soon to be released by Olympus that has me salivating over a piece of equipment for practically the first time ever. The SP-590 Ultra Zoom is a 12-megapixel point-and-shoot with a 26x wide angle zoom lens, dual image stabilization, high-speed sequential shooting, and pre-capture: "As soon as the focus is locked, Pre-Capture automatically archives ten frames (3MP) before fully pressing the button to capture the perfect shot."

Now that sounds like the perfect camera for a budding nature blogger. Remember those too-far-away, indistinct ducks I kept trying to capture last spring with my nice little camera that is good for many purposes but unfortunately only has a 3x zoom? Wow, could I do things with something like the SP-590. Maybe if I'm very good I can manage it as a combined late Christmas present and an early birthday present to myself. It's not due out until March - but that will be just in time for our spring waterfowl migration. I'm hoping.

1 comment:

Mary S. said...

Such wonderful photos from your Dad! I recognize the face looking out of the car from some other young people I know.