Monday, July 30, 2018

Three reasons every mom needs a DSLR

Around ten years ago I had a small photography business. I was inexperienced but passionate and trying to learn all I could while in college, working, getting married, and then moving 6 hours from home. It eventually turned into something that was taking up too much of my weekends and family time, so I decided to call it quits. I am so thankful for the knowledge I gained during that time, but I feel so strongly that you don't have to have professional level equipment and a fine art degree to take great shots of your family. That is why I like sharing things I have learned with you all.

One thing I do STRONGLY recommend is investing in a DSLR, or a digital single lens reflex camera. Some people think there is nothing a DSLR can do that their phone camera can't do, but this assumption is just not true. Others think you are going to have to spend thousands of dollars for a DSLR, and you can, but you definitely don't have to. There are plenty of entry level DSLR cameras out there, and there are plenty of reasons to take the leap and get yourself one.

1. Clarity

Have you ever taken a photo on your phone that looked great on the small mobile screen, but when enlarged on a computer or print it just doesn't look that great? A DSLR will give you sharper images with more contrast straight out of camera. The image sensors in a DSLR will allow you to capture sharp, detailed images, even in lower lighting. Also, unless you choose a prime lens, you will be able to zoom without compromising clarity like with the digital zoom on your phone. This can be a game changer.

2. Speed

A DSLR is much faster. You can take one shot after another without having to recharge like a point and shoot or wait for your phone camera to catch up (especially if it is always bogged down and nearly full of casual snaps of your kid like mine is). Another way they are faster is the shutter speed. You should be able to capture motion much better with a DSLR than with your phone camera. Keep in mind this is dependent on the level of DSLR you purchase, but overall I would say you should see a noticeable difference even in automatic mode when shooting in less than ideal lighting situations.

3. Control

You have so much more control over things like lighting and depth of field with a DSLR. You can really use your camera as a creative tool once you decide to dive into manually controlling these features! You can learn to overcome backlit photos (like below). You can learn back button focus and get amazing action shots. You can get close and really focus on your subject with a shallow depth of field. So many options open up, and the fun really begins when you start learning how to manipulate your camera's manual settings.


Don't get me wrong. I use my phone camera ALL THE TIME, but when I want really great shots, I always reach for my "good camera". It doesn't matter if you choose Nikon or Canon. Either will have the capabilities and features necessary to take your photos to the next level and capture some really precious memories of your people.


One thing you must realize before purchasing is that having a "good camera" will not automatically mean you will get good photos. A DSLR is not a magic fix for your photos, and you will not get professional level photos if you stay in automatic mode. However, starting in automatic mode to get comfortable with your camera and then easing into aperture mode and eventually manual mode makes perfect sense. Practice is key. It will take a little research and education before you figure it out, but it is totally doable. You will feel so great when you are no longer missing the shot because of less than perfect shooting conditions.

If you want to learn a few tips you can use with both your phone and your DSLR, be sure to subscribe to have my Top 10 Photo Tips delivered to your inbox! 


If you are wanting a DSLR and don't know where to start, the first thing to consider is what you need it to do both now and after you have gained some experience. Some newer models offer crazy advanced features that you may never use, so there is no reason to pay for them. DSLRs are not like cell phones. An older model can serve you just as well as a brand new one, so don't be tricked into spending more than necessary. Things to compare when shopping are image quality, available features (ISO, apertures, focus points), and design. Be aware that some listings will be for the camera body only, and some will come with a kit lens that you can upgrade once you learn more about the features. It can be overwhelming, but there are lots of resources, and it is totally worth it.

What about you? Do you have a DSLR? What is your favorite thing about it?

xo,
Katie

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