Monday, April 30, 2007

My First DSLR

My first digital camera was a Nikon Coolpix 990. I purchased it in May 2000 prior to graduating from college. I wanted it for my month long trip to North Carolina. It was expensive ($1000) but I took great photographs with it. Many of them are up on my website. I purchased it thinking that I would purchase a lot of lens accessories. That never really happened tho: in the end I wound up with a polarizer and a UV filter.

I held onto the 990 for about 3 years and then purchased a Sony Cybershot FC-717 in December 2003. I liked the optical zoom on the camera. I also wanted to be able to continue using the swivel shot. I took a lot of shots by holding the camera over my head and adjusting the lens downward. The Cybershot worked well and I didn't have any complaints about it.

I held that body for about 3 years before I entered the DSLR environment. I tried using both the Coolpix and the Cybershot to shoot indoor sporting events in low light and had horrible results. The lenses on these point and shoots were not fast enough, and I struggled with my timing. When I depressed the shutter release button there was a delay between that event and when the photograph was taken. I constantly failed to capture the moment.

Fortunately for me Nikon released the affordable D40 right around Christmas time 2006. I didn't want to sink a lot of money into my hobby at first - I wanted to try DSLR to see how it panned out, and then go from there. My wife's pretty frugal, so she used Google Checkout, E-Bates, and some online coupons when we purchased the camera. All told I think we spent around $520.

I had a lot of fun with the D40 and learned a lot about photography. Since then we've upgraded my equipment (I plan to most more on that), but I'm glad that we started off with the D40. It takes great pictures and helps the amateur photographer enter into the world of DSLR. A lot of my friends have shot incredible pictures of their children using a D40. If you're considering coming over from the Point and Shoot world look at the Nikon D40 or D40X as an affordable entry-level DSLR. I don't think you'll be disappointed.

Sunday, April 29, 2007

About Me

My name is Christopher Blunck and I'm about 30 years old now, living with my wife Julie in College Heights Estates MD. It's about a 5 minute walk away from the University of Maryland at College Park. There's a picture of me on the right of this post, as well in my profile. I'm sure you're tingling all over with excitement over this post - it's fascinating, isn't it?

I've used blogs in read-only mode for a few years now. I used to follow The Java Posse pretty closely as well as Python 411. I also subscribe to feeds for a few weather related sites like Capital Weather and Jeff Master's Wunder-Blog. Lastly I subscribed to a bunch of coworkers feeds. They're always writing things about cool new technologies and programming languages.

I like to keep myself busy with work and hobbies. I've been interested in digital photography for several years and recently I've expanded my hobby by learning how to use a DSLR camera. As I've transitioned from point and shoot to DSLR I've learned a lot, and I want to share what I've learned through this blog.

I try to take advantage as of many shooting opportunities as possible, and with Maryland being so close I have a lot of different events I can use for practice. With each event I attend I learn something different about angles, composition, depth of field, shutter speed, and aperture. I plan on recording this on my blog for historical purposes, and hopefully people will post comments offering shooting suggestions.