|My mini Pen and me|
|March 22, 2012 Elizabeth Gross|
Grain silos in Chadron captured with the Mini Pen using a texture filter.
It was a beautiful weekend in South Dakota. A light breeze caressed the air like it was nothing but blue skies in the beautiful Black Hills. Last weekend my boyfriend and I decided to take a trip to Rapid City. I love Rapid City; itís different from other larger cities not because of size but the people. It has a big city look with a Midwestern feel. On one end of town, you ascend into the dark, spiritual hills, while on the other side of town, you look down onto the prairie.
This weekend I was on a mission. From God? No. It was a mission to find that one thing I had been searching for the past two years; a new camera. For most people, buying a new camera is an easy process as long as it works well and is easy to use; however, I was looking for the holy grail of cameras, a digital SLR. I wanted it all; great features, easy to use, multiple lenses, and the ability to take photos of outer space. Okay, maybe not of outer space but I was looking for a good camera.
I have had a love of photography since I was a little kid. The first camera I ever saw was an old film camera of my momís. It was given to her by my grandpa, who picked it up in Paris while being stationed there during the Korean War. My mom has always had an eye for great photos and Iíd like to think she passed that on to me. I wanted so badly to take great photos and when I was little, I got that chance.
I donít remember the brand of my first camera but I can tell you from memory what it looks like. It was kind of large and bright red. I took that camera with me everywhere, taking photos of everything, and I always took it with us camping. ĎLittle Redí has since disappeared but the excitement and memory of creating great pictures never did.
My favorite art form has always been photography. If thereís any chance to see the work of great photographers, Iím always there. I remember one show I went to that changed my perspective about the kind of subject matter photographs could be. I wish I could tell you who the artist was but it was at the Kearney Arts Center.
At the time, I thought the artistís subject matter was weird. Her show consisted mostly of broken dolls and men in their underwear. It was a good show, otherwise Iím pretty sure I never would have remembered it. Over time, I realized that the photos themselves were a reflection of the person and told their own story. Maybe this person had a broken childhood or had things happen to them we donít want to think about.
The next camera I owned was a digital point and shoot. I lovingly called this camera ĎThe Tin Maní and it was my first Olympus. This was the camera I had when I learned about the rule of thirds and unique subject matter. I still possess this camera and will never get rid of it. My first Olympus holds a very special place in my heart. Another recent addition was a 35mm SLR given to me by one of my mentors. He is a great photographer and I always love to get feedback from him whenever I get a chance.
The reason it has taken me so long to find a camera for me was money. Oh money, the barrier between me and something new and shiny. The second reason it took so long was the kind I wanted. Did I want a name brand? Was it going to be large? Small? What was in my budget?
Which brings me back to last weekend, we walked into the Rushmore Mall. I had done a Google search on every place that sold cameras in Rapid City. Before we left I made a solemn, albeit very loud vow, to everyone that by the end of the weekend I will have a new camera.
My boyfriend Kylan, his uncle and I walked into Ritz Camera Shop. The sales girl didnít have much of a sales technique but that didnít matter. Much to my dismay, they didnít have the camera I was hunting for. Instead, they had a Ďsecond choiceí camera, an Olympus Pen EM-1. No one in Scottsbluff carried Olympus but I had read a lot about this camera. She handed me the camera off the shelf. I turned it on and fell in love. For the rest of the weekend, I went photo hunting, looking high and looking low for that perfect shot. Though it had taken me awhile, I have found my newest friend. My mini Pen and me.
This camera has everything I wanted and more. I can edit photos on the camera, it has six art filters, and many more things I havenít had a chance to figure out yet. Iím excited because it will give me the opportunity to never miss a shot. For my personal photos I hope to be able to accomplish things that I never would have been able to do with ole ĎTin Maní. Most of all, I am excited to share with our readers even better photos.
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