I have wanted a DSLR for years, but there were two reasons I was hesitant.
- They have so many bells and whistles and I didn’t know if I wanted to take the time to learn how to make it work.
- I was worried I wouldn’t use it enough to justify the cost.
On the other hand, I have been taking so many more picture lately and the challenge of capturing an experience in a single (or series of) moments is something that appeals to me as a scrapbook and documenter.
I finally took the plunge in May and bought a DSLR. I read tons of reviews, watched several YouTube videos, and surveyed everyone who would listen. There were so many things to consider and I was feeling a little overwhelmed by all of the choices. But once I held the Canon 80D in my hands, I knew it was the one for me. Once I made the decision to buy the camera, I had to come up with a way to ensure it wouldn’t be money wasted.
Introducing the Story Slideshow Photo Challenge. Each month I will choose a different venue, theme, or topic and go on a “photo safari”. I want to set aside the time and make it a point to try different angles, experiment with the light, and practice various techniques. These are the things I want to keep in mind as I embark on these photo expeditions:
- I am not a professional photographer and have so much to learn. But I do know that when I make a conscious decision to slow down and think things through I enjoy the photos much more.
- I love my projects more when I love the photographs.
- I know that the more I look through the lens, the better I “see”. I like seeing the world with a storyteller’s eye, wtth or without my camera and I LOVE that it’s a skill that can be developed.
- Put that camera to use!
I chose to call the challenge the Story Slideshow because it is the story in the photos that matter to me the most. It can be a story as obvious as a birthday party or a group of people. It can also be the story of a place you love, an object you treasure, or the recreation of a feeling.
This month’s Story Sideshow Photo Challenge is Water. I rented a beach house in Florida with a couple of friends and spent one day trying to capture the salty air, the warm sand, and the total relaxation. Here are a few of those photos.
I love the wild, uninhabited look of this beach. There were never many people here and I spent several days lounging under an umbrella, reading a book. It was my favorite place for the week.
Speaking of lounging under an umbrella- this was the view for much of my vacation. Seeing it reminds me of the sound of the waves, the cool breeze, and the fact that I came home without a sunburn 🙂
One type of story I’m particular interested in capturing is the story of relationships. This is my friend, Natalie and her two children. Mia and Logan were more than happy to spend all their time in the water, entertaining each other with their boogey boards and water guns. But when Natalie suggested building a sandcastle, they were thrilled.
And then Randy, got in on the action.
About an hour before sunset, the five of us went back to the beach to take a few family photos. One of the techniques I am practicing with my DSLR is varying the depth of field. I don’t have it mastered yet, but I am getting better. Love that the kids are in focus while Randy and Natalie are slightly blurred in the background.
Those kids loved the water! I was impressed by their lack of fear (although it caused the occasional panic for their poor mom 🙂 and that in this day and age of technology, the simple things are still the best.
I’d never been on a beach that allowed bonfires before, so you know there was no way I could pass that up! I also couldn’t pass up the chance to experiment with angles. For this photo, I spread out a beach towel and laid on my stomach. I was a little concerned about getting sand in my camera, but I bought the camera to be used. Carefully.
Who doesn’t love a sunset? It’s incredible how quickly the sun goes down. I took a photo every few seconds and the difference was amazing. It’s the beauty of digital photography, that we can take dozens of shots, choose just the right one, and delete the rest without the expense of film.
Okay- so this photo doesn’t contain any water like the challenge states and it’s not a great photo. But it’s the first picture I took with my DSLR in the dark in manual mode. I just kept adjusting the ISO until it let in enough light, but didn’t blur the photo too badly.
Interested in joining me for the Story Slideshow Photo Challenge?
- There’s no hard or fast rules. You can interpret the prompt any way that works for you- water could mean the pool, the sprinkler, rain- it’s up to you.
- Don’t have a DSLR? Use whatever camera you have. The important thing is to capture photos that tell stories.
- Make a collage of your favorite photos
- Post your collage on Instagram using the hashtag #storyslideshow (You can find me on Instagram @adriennesinklings)
I can’t wait to see what you capture!