Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Jumping Off The High Dive

OK so I didn't really jump off the high dive anywhere, literally. But I feel like it. For the past few weeks I have felt like I am standing on the edge of comfortable footing looking down into the great unknown and big wide world of photography trying to talk myself into making the jump. Every time I thought about having to redo the way I manage my files on the computer I swear I turned right around and took several steps back. But then the beautiful blue waters of what could be so enjoyable and totally awesome always tempt me back.

* The big decisions included deciding to upgrade my photo editing software and change the way I manage files and my work flow.

* Trying to come to terms with the balance between extra work and value if I decided to start shooting in RAW.

* Is it a good time to upgrade my camera body or just continue with upgrading lenses?

Those were the biggest things to think about anyway. My friend Troy Baker has been telling me about Lightroom, the program he uses to manage his work flow, for a while now. I didn't believe that it could be so different and totally awesome until I saw him use it a bit. I was totally in love after that. Can you be in love at first sight with a computer program. So we now are proud owners of fancy editing software. Lightroom for management and C4 in case we ever are insane enough to try to use it. It has been a hard change for me. With changing my software came the almost natural progressing decision to shoot in RAW.

Some sample pictures of photos taken in RAW and edited in Lightroom

Boy has that been a massive pain in the butt! I am still suffering growing pains. But just being able to get perfect white balance alone is enough of a carrot to keep me plugging along! I also love being able to use the great presets I have downloaded to my Lightroom program. I still don't know what I am doing. A few classes would be so totally awesome.

The camera upgrade is totally the result of my ever persistently biting shopping bug. I have been so good lately. After periods of trying really hard, I always get an itch to binge a little. So it didn't take more than a little advice from Troy (and a happy tax return) to send me to the Internet spending long hours trying to find the best deal on a new camera. I justify my probably not so necessary purchase by saying, "I am going to have the best vacation pictures ever! And video of our cruise this April!!!!" So in the next few weeks I am expecting a few packages on my door step.

-my new Canon 5D mark II
-the new wide angle EF 16-35mm f/2.8L II USM lens that will come with said camera
-a new 8GB memory stick
-Adobe photoshop C4
-an of course new field guides and DVD tutorials

I am so excited. So I jumped...a huge swan dive right out into the middle of the looking back...just thoughts of one day maybe being as good as all of my friends! Here's to hoping!!!!


Anonymous said...

Boy you got the bug bad. But hey those shots were fantastic. I love the one of Sara.

Fisher Family said...

Wow Jen..would love to hear more about Lightroom. I hear you about the bug..I just subscribed to a photo catalog, not a great idea if I'm trying to be frugal. Such fun stuff!

Anonymous said...

Beautiful pictures. Good thing that's one thing I won't catch (I have a bug catcher already in the immediate family)!!!
Tucson Grandpa