Monday, April 21, 2014

Blog Photography

Hi everybody! Are you as tired as I am?
Thank the Lord I don't have to work today so I can recover and do laundry. 
I feel sorry for my husband. He got up as usual to be on time for his Monday morning work out session.
I'm tired but we had a great day. 
It's cloudy so I won't get any pictures taken today. 
I'm hoping that with the clouds we will get some drizzle but I doubt it. We were blessed with a really nice strong rain last night. We haven't gotten a soaking like that in a very long time. 
I am praying this drought will be over soon. Join me in that won't you? Please pray for rain in Texas (and in the other southwestern states.)

The cloudy skies had me thinking about photography. I knew nothing about taking pictures when I hit publish for the first time so I thought I'd share my immersion into blog photography just in case you are a new blogger. 

I wish I'd known what I know now. At the beginning I had a little Nikon Cool Pix point and shoot. I took pictures at night and with a flash because I worked full time and it was dark by the time I came home. 
This is what I got. 

and this.

See how the light from the flash sort of distorts the shadows and bounces off of the glass? The flash bounces off of glass, metallics and even shiny wood. I read early on that you should never take pictures with your flash. The Cool Pix had a function that shut it off.

I was still trying to photograph at night so now my pictures were grainy. Without a flash the shutter stays open longer so the camera is very sensitive to movement. 
Movement of the camera causes pictures be be blurry or grainy.

I wanted my blog to be a journal with words and pictures so the photographs were important. I went and downloaded some free photo editing software. I chose Picassa. I was able to sharpen my pictures somewhat but it took many photos to get a few good ones. 
I solved this problem by setting the timer on the camera. By setting the timer for a 10 or 20 second delay it eliminated the movement that pushing the button caused. Once the button was pushed I concentrated on holding the camera still while it snapped the picture. 
And no more nocturnal photos for me. 
The next six months of pictures were done like this and some of them were pretty good. 

This one has been pinned a lot but there are many problems with it. 

Bill got me a new camera before a trip to Ruidoso.

The quality of the camera was much better so taking pictures was easier. Using the timer was still the best option. It was an Olympus SZ-31 MR and I think we paid $300 or $400 dollars for it. 

It took some time to learn how to stage shots.

Food photography is not my favorite thing to do so it doesn't happen often on my blog. I wouldn't want to be a food blogger. They have a tough job.

At this point I began to explore light and shutter speed in the manual mode. There are tons of sites that explain all the ins and outs of photography. I'm not really sure I understand it all but I read and played with my camera until it felt comfortable.

Before we went to Alaska Bill once again thought we should have a new camera. A big kid camera this time. 
So we headed back to Arlington Camera and got the Nikon D5200 which was around $700. It shoots in SLR and Digital. SLR stands for Single-lens reflex - a mirror and prism system. (Don't ask me more than that.) 

Bill said he should have bought me this one in 2012 but was too nervous to bite the bullet. Maybe he didn't think this blogging thing would last. He was overdue for a camera so he kept the Olympus.

The new Nikon camera is great for what I have do for Let's Add Sprinkles. It has been a journey learning what time of day is best for photographing which rooms and how to best display items for pictures. I've also edited and eliminated a lot of visual clutter from my home. I had too much stuff and it was distracting.
I learned to see cords, plugs, tufts of dog hair, smudges on the wall etc. before I take a snapshot.   
The tripod is the next thing on my list as it will eliminate further movement and blurred photos. Right now I'm using a tall table or step ladder to keep the camera still.  

Blog photography is so much more than "Hey look what I did!"- click! It is an art form that I've far from mastered. 
If you want to see some gorgeous photos from amazing bloggers check out these sites. 

French Country Cottage 
Cedar Hill Farmhouse 
Miss Mustard Seed 

Have a great day. 

Linking with,
French Country Cottage     
Common Ground


  1. Oh you're so lucky to have such a good camera! I hope to get a better one someday. Mine is decent, but not as fancy as some. I use picmonkey to edit my photos. Thank goodness for it! You gave some good tips. I never thought of using a step ladder to take pics from.

  2. I don't have a fancy camera, but I enjoy taking pictures. And yes, I never use the flash.

  3. Oh- I know, Katie. I am such a bad picture taker. I still have a cheap little point & shoot camera. I know I should look into getting a better one and working on my skills. It just seems that I run out of time to do everything I SHOULD do. You do a great job with your photography. That is a great camera you have and I think that is the same one my daughter has- she takes great shots, too. xo Diana

  4. Katie, I really admire you for getting a better camera and learning to use it! It's on my 'to-do' list, but don't know when it will happen! I still use my point and shoot, but have learned a few tricks. (I started out using flash, too, and another blogger kindly recommended that it was a no-no)
    Your photos are looking great-good job!!

  5. You've come a long way! My early photos are so terrible! They were also at night, and all have a yellow look to them. I've gotten better, but still have SO much to learn! I am hoping to get a better camera soon. Your photos always look great to me!