Sunday, April 4, 2010

A Dear John Letter Regarding a Nikon D70

Dear John,

You've had your Nikon D70 since before you met me, for more than five years now. You lent it to my sister to photograph our wedding and she did a fantastic job, shooting photos like this...

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...and this...

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...and this...

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Additionally, over the years, we've both had various $99 point and shoot cameras, and those have served us well, until....

...I started blogging. I did fine with my purple GE for a while, a camera I picked out for its pretty color, but after blogging for a few months, and looking at the photography on blog posts such as THIS (namely the 3rd photo), THIS, and THIS, I began to feel an empty hole inside me.

I thought that if I could take photos such as these, that my blog could move up a few notches and I could be popular like the other moms. I asked you if there was a way to set our $99 cameras to take photos like this, focusing in on just one part of the picture, and leaving other parts blurry. You said no.

I was crest-fallen. I would never be popular like all the other moms with the expensive cameras. When you saw how much this meant to me, however, you added that your Nikon D70, the camera that had been put safely away for nearly five years, had that capability. I now had a renewed hope that I could one day be an awesome photographer!

You showed me where it was stored in an organized backpack, but it seemed so overwhelming to me to try to learn how to use it, that I simply zipped up the backpack again, and replaced it back in the closet next to the shoes.

That wasn't the last of the Nikon D70, however. On Mother's Day last year, along with innumerable other gifts, you officially presented me with your Nikon D70 to have as my own. Because things with the twins were so crazy at the time, I didn't ask you to show me how to use my camera until several months later. This attempt failed as well, however, because the battery pack wasn't charged. I plugged the pack in to charge it, you went out of town, and again, the Nikon D70, in it's backpack, got put back into the closet.

Fast forward to my current vacation here in my mom's border town. I knew I would have time on my hands to learn this thing, so again, I dug the backpack out of the closet and brought it with me. However, one thing lead to another, things got crazy, like they always do, and we never found the time to work with the camera.

Yesterday, in a desperate attempt to learn my camera, I called my sister to ask if she remembered how to use your my camera, and because she knew every detail of the Nikon D70 like the back of her hand, I assumed that she now owned one. After a few minutes of instruction from her, I learned what I had longed to learn for so long. I finally learned how to do the partial-blurry thing! I know there must be a more official term for this, but since I don't know it, this is what I will call it.

The following are some subjects with which I experimented...

First we have a half-dead plant my brother moved into my mother's house. One would not normally think a half-dead plant could be a beautiful photography subject, but as I attempted to do the partial-blurry thing with different branches, I think these turned out like pieces of art, all thanks to the camera you let me adopt, John! What do you think?

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Next we have a simple lace curtain hanging in front of my mother's picture window. I love this because the view outside my mother's front door is not something I wanted to feature, as the grass is still dry and yellow, the street is busy and the house across the street is half-finished. However, what with the partial-blurry thing, no one is the wiser to the unsavory view and the beauty of the curtains stand out...

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And finally, we have my favorite of all photography subjects, our offspring. Just look at the little hand dimples. I've always thought hand dimples on babies are the cutest things ever, and since I did the partial-blurry thing, you can hardly see the wrinkles on my mother's arm....

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And here, your son had just fallen asleep on my mother's shoulder, again the partial-blurry thing focusing on the cutest baby ever, and obscuring my mother's cheek wrinkles...

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It's so fun to finally have a baby with hair, after ten attempts!

So John, thanks for giving me something meaningful that has made me really happy over the past two days. You are the best husband anyone could ask for and I love you!

P.S. And thanks again for taking 8 of the kids to Utah! :)

P.P.S. Mom, thanks for being a good sport and letting me make fun of you on my blog! :)



On 365 Days of TV-Free Toddler Time today:
It's Stop and Go Sign Time! Click the pic to see.



On life in mexico {and other places} a picture a day today:
{two square buildings}

12 comments:

alessandra said...

Awww, he's so beautiful, dimples, cheeks and hair ;)

Shana said...

i think you are doing great!! Happy Easter!

Jessica said...

love the pictures...have fun learning. the pioneer woman calls the fuzzies bokah i believe...she's got tons of tuts on her blog.

thedailydelights said...

Hi lovely Jen! Looks like you're enjoying your mom, daniel, some rest time, and way to go with the camera...looking forward to more fab shots. Daniel's hair btw is soo cute! xoxo, trina

Nikki said...

He is so beautiful. Your wedding pictures are too. I love those dimpled little hands. He has the same middle name as one of mine. :)

singlemormonchick said...

to get the fuzzy out of focus areas in your shots you are adjusting the aperture(the size of opening of the lens)to manipulate the depth of field(the area that is in focus). the "popular" shots work with a short depth of field so that your subject is in focus, but everything beyond is blurry, enhancing your subject even further. on most dslr cameras you can use the "portrait" mode to get this automatically or in a manual setting set your aperture to the smallest number possible-this varies with what lens you are using, but could be a 1.2 or 2.4. seeing the shots,it looks like you are already grasping these concepts!

Ann said...

Looks great!
We have the d80, and while I can't grasp all of what it does, I do love the "partial-blurry" modes ;) good term, BTW!!

:)

Mom2my10 @ 11th Heaven said...

Thanks for all of your compliments, guys! And Single Mormon Chick, great info and advice. I am definitely going to try what you said with my point and shoot. Although I love the Nikon, it's so big, and it would be great to learn how to do this with my little red camera also!

And BTW, SMC, I would LOVE to see more photos on YOUR blog!

~Amy~ said...

What fun! I so want to be a good photographer and be popular like all the other mommys! :) You're so cute!

Jessica Stier said...

Nice job! The D70 is a great camera. You are going to have so much fun exploring bokeh. I am excited to see your results.

Jessica
www.MomShots.com

Mom2my10 @ 11th Heaven said...

Jessica, okay, so the term is bokeh. I will remember!

Hen Jen said...

congratulations, I had my nikon D80 for more than2 years before I leaned how to do this. At first I was cheating and using the little flower icon on the camera, it worked some of the time. I finally learned how to shoot in aperture mode a few months ago, and now I use it all the time!

the blurry part is called bokeh. I love that word! I heart bokeh. :)