The new lens

At my age, birthdays are only good for one thing.  I’m certainly past the point where another year older brings exciting new privileges like drinking or driving.  In fact, I’m starting to dread birthdays, so my birthday gift this year helped sweeten the deal a little.  I’ve been grumbling about a wide angle lens for a while now, and Corbin went out and bought me one (with a little help from daddy, I’m sure.)  It’s a lovely 18-55mm zoom, which makes taking certain shots a whole heck of a lot easier.  It’s a cool new toy, to be sure.

Corbin and I went to the park to test it out, and I have to say, shooting a baby is MUCH easier with a wide angle.  I’m close enough to grab him if he starts doing something like trying to fall off a park bench or eating a handful of dirt – both of which he did while we were there.  So far I’m really truly pleased with it, and while I know I’m limiting its potential a little by doing baby shots, I’m sure I’ll find lots of cool things to shoot with it.

I tested it out a bit on the pond at the park when the sun was getting lower.  Despite the crud that people have been flinging on the ice, the pond is lovely in the light.  What is it about ice that brings out the worst in us?  Either we act really really stupid (try to walk on it) or we dirty it up with stuff just to “see how it slides.”  Bleh.

Are there such things as sun trails?  I know you call the light the moon leaves on the water a moon trail, but I’m not sure what you call this.  It certainly captured my attention, and I messed around with different exposures trying to get the ripples of light on the ice while not totally blowing the sky out at the same time.  The key was to block the low, bright sun with a tree branch and expose for the ice.  Which totally lost any detail I had on the tree, but who cares, it’s just a boring tree.  It’s not even a grown up tree – it’s one that’s caged with a little mesh to keep it from escaping until it settles in and resigns itself to the new, mediocre location. Cool berries though, so definitely points for trying.

What is it about the camera that brings out the stupid in people?  As soon as I pull out my camera someone invariably has to comment on something – most usually the size.  This guy was at least a little original: he asked if I was photographing the old rusted fountain in the pond with an air of disbelief.  Another day when it wasn’t so cold and I didn’t have a fussy baby with me I might have tried to point out the wonderful light, but as it was, I just smiled and told him I was testing a new lens.  It’s people like that that make me second guess myself a lot.  He obviously couldn’t see anything worth photographing, and he couldn’t understand why I was bothering.

I did try this shot in pure black and white, but it lost a little something that made it interesting.

3 thoughts on “The new lens

  1. People are silly. Around here everyone and their mother and grandmother have a DSLR so bigger cameras are not uncommon at all so we don’t usually get remarks like that. The most I have gotten lately is what model I am shooting with (lol yeah they are that competative) kinda sad really. If you go to an event like the cherry blossoms in DC you will actually see more people with DSLRs than point and shoots.
    I have thrown things onto ice, but at the same time one of my favorite shots was from reflections with undisturbed ice. So I guess it just depends on my mood, and I limit myself to rocks if anything. In anycase nice shot, that 18-55 will serve you nicely I think. Glad you kept this one in color as I feel the loss of the slight gold cast of light and hint of blue in the sky really would have been sad.

  2. Don’t second guess your own instinct for a shot, leave that for the selection process afterwards. Well anyway that’s my view on it. Have a great time with the new lens too!

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