9 things having to do with photography and me:
1. I finally got the chance to talk to my friend Patience about photography and other topics! She and I have had this "boy, I think we'd be good friends" vibe since meeting last fall but have never managed to get together. All it took was walking the Monument Avenue 10k with Birth Matters VA! That should be easy to repeat, right? ;) She took amazing photos (click those words, really! go look!) of us and our surroundings. I was rather disappointed in mine and she graciously suggested that I'm going through growing pains.
2. I thought she was being kind, but my angst over my struggles with the overcast day and my zoom lens made me pick up my macro (which is easier for me to learn on than the zoom, for some reason) and start asking questions. I forced myself to play with the M setting (fully manual) and it opened doors into the relationship between shutter speed and aperture. Aperture is an old friend - well, the first thing I learned after buying my macro last summer, anyway - but I've never messed with the shutter, nor felt out the interplay between the two.
3. While searching for something else, I had the idea to look up how to photograph a silhouette. Et voila, the secret. Bonus: it reminded me of the existence of the Digital Photography School site to which the last three links in this post (items #2 and #3) lead.
4. I really, really, really, really want a portrait lens. Then a telephoto and a fisheye. And a wide angle. And, um, a 5x magnification macro and ring flash. Please? (Update: filed the taxes and I'm buying the portrait lens and a decent camera bag. 300mm telephoto or a 60mm macro next would be beautiful. Or a 40D.)
5. I'm trying to be less self-conscious about shooting in public places like restaurants or city streets, and about taking photos of strangers. Trying.
6. Something I read spurred me to completely reconsider my old notions about cranking up the ISO in dim lighting. I can't find it now, but did come across a cool page with photo examples. Knowledge is power, man. Defeat the grain!
7. Had a total breakthrough on April 1st regarding going fully-manual. Horrible confession: I have NEVER used my camera's light meter before. Now I'm bringing it all together. A lot of the photos I'm getting this way are AWFUL but I'm definitely learning a lot about exposure, focus, and light.
8. My zoom lens has a dust problem and I need to figure out how to resolve it. (Correction...it's probably the sensor, and I need to teach myself how to lock open the shutter so I can try blowing it, but if it's fused dust, I'll need to have it cleaned professionally. Sigh.)