Just a Mom and a Camera and the Last Straw

The photograph of Mt. Diablo was probably the last straw.  It had been raining hard and even some lightening and thunder for two days. The afternoon that photo was taken I had been out running errands with my daughter who owns the Canon Powershot S5. The tripod was in the van. She wanted to stop at the end of the shopping mall parking lot and take pictures of the sunset. I told her I wanted to take pictures too and she said I could when she was done, when the sun had set. That is why in my photo there is no sun still up.

I needed my own camera. The one bad thing about the Canon S5 was the size. A pocket camera it is not. I wanted a camera with all that power, but not that size. It also had to be affordable for a Mom of 5 kids and my husband having the only income.

I looked on B  and H. I looked at Best Buy. I looked at Target. I knew I wanted another Canon. I knew I wanted a battery operated camera. I like to use re-chargeable batteries.

I can not remember exactly how much the Canon S5 cost, well over $200.00, probably close to $300.00. I could not spend that much again. But I am spoiled by the features and quality of photos.

I became interested in the Canon Powershot SX120IS. I saw it at Target. It was on sale for under $200.00. I came home and over the next few days did some research. I read the reviews on Cnet and Best Buy. I looked on Flickr to see what kind of photos people were taking with the camera. People complained about purple fringe. People always complain about purple fringe. They complained about the SD memory chip that came in the box was too small.  They complained about the flash recycle time and shutter lag. Oh and the battery compartment is stiff to open and close. It is also on the Canon S5. I guess I have never had my hands on expensive camera, so these things are not a big deal to me. For the type of photography I want to do, I just work around the limitations of the camera.

I went back and bought the camera while it was still on sale at Target. B and H had it for the same price, but I wanted it now. (my inner Veruca, Willie Wonka and the Chocolate Factory)

It had two new things I was not used to. The DIGIC 4 processor and a mode called Easy Mode. No, make that 3. And it has no eye view finder. I never use the eye view anyway *gasp*

Like any camera you must really read the manual and get to know the camera very well. Because it was very similar to the Canon S5 I found my way around fast. There was no manual in the box. Canon is cutting back on expenses I suppose. The PDF file can be found here. The SD memory chip however was 2g’s!

Something different that I like on this camera is when I put it in macro mode with the tulip and switch the dial from manual mode to say P. The macro stays. Same thing with the self timer. Even though I switch modes, my timer stays. With the Canon S5 I had to re-do those things each time I changed modes.

The flash in certain modes is pretty decent. But like all these point and shoots, they are terrible in low light conditions. I have tried to teach my self all I can about natural light photography to get around this.

While I see a huge difference in the noise reduction because of the DIGIC 4 processor, I try to stay under 200 ISO. I am trying to loosen up about my aversion to noise in my photos. I guess it can have it uses for mood and effect in some photos. And if it means getting a shot of friends, family or an event that may never happen again, or not taking it because of the noise, I have started taking the shot.

Here is one of the first photos I took.

here is another, from my kitchen

and yesterday I took this

I have been happy with this camera and what it can do.

I told my husband it could be my early Christmas gift and he was happy with that. Best of all my daughter can now take photos with out fighting Mom.

Harajuku Lovers Fragrance at WalMart

Found these at WalMart

Christmas Sugar Cookies

Fallout 3

My son received Fallout 3 for his 20th birthday. This game is very interesting and has many levels.  My husband like to play it too. But much to my surprise, my 18 year daughter enjoys the game. She would not watch the tv show 24 with us because it made her queasy. But Fallout 3 she enjoys. There are some adult themes in the game, but my son has told me it is not necessary to the game and he does not use them.

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