Sunday, November 15, 2009

Picture this

I've been taking photos since I was about ten years old. My first camera was my mom's Brownie that had a flap on the view finder on the top of the boxy body of the camera. It had a huge stobe attachment that used blue bulbs that would "pop" when it flashed. I had to keep a box of those bulbs handy when I was taking pictures. Winding the film into the camera properly took a while to learn. I would ride my bike into town to the camera store to have the film developed. It took at least two weeks to get the pictures back. I waited impatiently and then rode my bike back into town to get them.

I later got an instamatic camera. It had little cubes for the flash that were such an improvement over the strobe bulbs. The little cubes had four flashes on them and would snap onto the top of the camera and rotate. I took this to camp and on special trips.

After I got a job when I was about fifteen I got my first good camera. It was a little 35mm and took gorgeously sharp photos (compared to the grainy ones that came out of the previous cameras). I think I paid about $100 for that camera which was a huge amount at the time.

I eventually graduated to a Pentax K1000 that belonged toMr. Dirtywrench. Then I had to learn how to take pictures! F-stops and apertures and all that. I'm not saying I really learned it very well but taking photos got a lot more complicated with that camera. But my photos did improve immensely.

And the point of all that is...I've taken a lot of pictures!

I have no less than thirty photo albums (I haven't counted recently) and boxes of many more.

And I love pictures. I love having the photographic recordings of people and times in my life. It is great fun to go back and look at any of these albums and I enjoy looking at other people's albums too. Maybe you've noticed that I post a lot of pictures on this here lil' blog. I guess I'm just a really visual person because the other blogs that interest me the most have lots of pictures too.

Having a digital camera has made life more simple....and more complicated. I don't have any photo albums that represent the last two years of my life. The pictures are all on a computer. Not the same. I got a printer and found out it is somewhat problematic to print the photos and I use up a ridiculous amount of ink. Those cartridges ain't cheap either!

I admit that since I began using a digital camera I am taking even more pictures. But whipping out the camera to record the family doing whatever is nothing new. I've done it consistently all these many years.

But since I have started this lil' here blog....every time I go to take a picture, someone has to say..."oh no. More pictures for the blog." "Look out! You're going to be on the blog!" Etc. Etc. blahblahblahblah.

No! I just want to take some pictures, okay?

So I heard this again tonight. Seth brought some starving college friends home for a hot meal. Of course I wanted to record the event of guests at the table. I always do this don't I, kids? But still I heard..."Oh boy! She's taking pictures! You guys are gonna be on the blog!"

No! I just want to take some pictures, okay? I won't put them on the blog.

"What?? You're not going to put us on the blog? We want to be on the blog!"

Okay, then.

Make up your mind!


  1. I love the K1000. So wonderful.

    You know, there is always a free online album option. Try Flickr. They have a cool layout with albums and plenty of free storage, though there are paid options as well.

  2. My parents had cameras just like you described. They sold them at a yard sale for $5 each and I cried. (I still have my Polaroid.)

    I had no printed pictures after getting my digital camera. I've finally started taking advantage of the specials through Snapfish, Shutterfly, Walgreens, etc. Makes me feel better to have prints in my hands for some reason.

  3. At first I didn't like the idea of not having print photos, it made them seem not real or something. But once I got used to organizing my photos in iphoto (I use a Mac) and discovered the slideshow option I never looked back.

    Seriously, what is the point of printed photos that sit in boxes or albums in the back of a closet somewhere? How often do you really take them out and look at them? It is wonderful fun to do so but I rarely ever looked back at them.

    Now I have it set up so that I have different folders for events in our lives that I set as the slideshow screensaver on my computer. I set it so that it doesn't time out. My default is a slideshow that randomly pulls from every single photo stored on my computer. Since my computer is located in my office and can be seen from the kitchen or in passing to bedrooms or den it is very much on display.

    I love walking past and being surprised by a photo from a vacation we took 4 years ago. Or a friend I haven't seen in ages. Or the day the twin grand babies were born.

    The way my software works is that the photo is stored in a main "collection". You can then set up "albums" that contain different subsets of the main collection. These are just pointers to the digital image, so its not like you have copies in each album. You can then select which album to include in a slideshow or use the default to all photos.

    I may feature an album such as "2009 Renfest weekend" for a while on my monitor and when I get bored with it I merge it into a folder that contains all the festivals we have attended. This is particularly fun with holiday photos. I have a slideshow that contains years of christmas photos that I play most of December. (I can choose to have christmas music playing at the same time or mute it).

    Because of this I have actually been working on scanning into digital format all of my old print photos. Now they are being seen!

  4. Seren Dippity: That's amazing what you have done. I agree, we see lots of pictures on our screen saver that we wouldn't otherwise as often. I'm still back and forth about the physical print albums compared to digital because I wonder what we will have fifty years from now. Will the digitals be around like the old, old photos of the grandparents days that I cherish?

    Also, I was afraid I couldn't really share the digital albums with other people like you can with a book, but I'm changing my mind about that since over the last couple days I've made several albums on my new Face Book page and lots of people can look at them and COMMENT. Cool.

  5. And Southern Gal: I need to start printing some pictures that way. I do still feel the need to have some printed pictures, definitely.

  6. If only there were more time! I also have tons of pictures. Two of those Creative Memories storage boxes that hold 2500 pictures-full! I lost track of how many Rubbermaid containers I have full of pictures.
    ...then the digital ones! Countless CD's and DVD's and external hard drives-full!
    I also started to scan old time photos in as well. I'm just afraid something will happen to them. I subscribe to an online backup service but it takes forever to back everything up. I don't print very many pictures out either, or get them printed. I should, there is just something about flipping through stacks of pictures that can't be beat! I should take advantage of the cheap prices around and get some done. [sigh] If only there were more time!


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