Digital Diving

A year ago my Dad gifted me an old Canon XSi DSLR after watching my growing interest to take half-decent photos. After a solid year of shooting, I still consider myself a novice. After some months of practice with the camera, that same Dad sent over a new-to-me computer to help me fancy-up my photos with the idea I might begin to post them online; I still have not started using Flickr, but here I am blogging them! A month ago the fairy gift giver of things digital surprised me with the second monitor pictured here on the left. This will allow me to work more efficiently and watch tutorials on one monitor while working the lesson on the other.

As a birthday present from my husband, Caleb, a brand new Canon T2i arrived via UPS – at the last possible moment for delivery. I can only swoon in love that he loves me that much to help my dreams come true. As if that wasn’t enough my Dad overwhelms me with a download and difficult installation of Magic Lantern on my new camera; this software promises to make me an instant professional, or so frustrated at my ineptitude that I give up photography and stick with knitting. Tomorrow begins my next big learning venture; I embark on a free 30-day trial of Lynda.com with a load of tutorials to help me learn more about Photoshop, Lightroom, Premiere, and After Effects. Look out world, I might find out that I have something to say.

Here it is 30 days later and I have learned a lot. I have taken pages of notes, re-watched videos, practiced with their files and mine, and just completed the last of the four tutorials I set out to watch a month ago.  At first, I thought eight hours seemed like something I could finish in one day kind of like going to work. After reaching parts of the video that I hadn’t yet experienced or wanted to know more about, I would pause to attempt (what the video make look like a couple of clicks and maybe a drag) a simple photo edit, and then realize that two hours had passed.

I would recommend these videos for any beginner, but there are also a lot more options out there as well for those trying to increase their skills on a cheaper budget. These videos give you a base understanding of the major buttons so that when you are struggling to make that special photo ‘stand out’ and you click on YouTube you will have an idea of all the weird-named buttons the videos are referring to.  I look forward to taking some time to integrate my training into my work for a while and then perhaps I will jump back on the watching and writing part of the bandwagon; for now, it is time for more action.

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