Feel free to add your opinions on this lens in the comments below.
Written Review below the video review if you don't want to watch the video.
I had a shoot just this last weekend. I have not replaced my 50mm f/1.8D with the 50mm f/1.8G and was not wanting to manual focus the D. So I decided to kill two birds with one stone. I would rent a lens for the shoot and then at the same time I would do a review on it. So I went to lensrentals.com and looked around. I was thinking of renting either the 50-150mm f/2.8 or the 24-70mm f/2.8 lens. While I was looking at them I stumbled across the Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8 lens. I had never seen it in all my browsing of lenses before for some reason. I went over and looked on B&H and discovered that the lens is only $499 brand new. That is why it was so inexpensive to rent compared to the 24-70mm or the 50-150mm lenses. It had great reviews on B&H so I decided to rent it. I also figured it would be interesting to take to the football stadium on Friday night and see how it would rock out for sports. It also happened to go with me to OctoberFest too. So I shot it a lot over the weekend.
Let's start with the price. Most of the time when you find a zoom lens that has a consistent fast aperture through the zoom range you will pay a lot of money for that feature. Most of the time you are looking at well over $1,000 for those lenses. So this lens selling for $499 US is just amazing. If you are not sure what that means, when you look at a zoom lens it will show the maximum aperture either as a single number, like this one at f/2.8, or as a range, like the kit lens at f/3.5-5.6. The kit lens can get to f/3.5 when at 18mm, but when you are zoomed all the way in the best it will do is f/5.6 for the aperture. That is a difference of one and a third stops of light. So this lens lets in a lot of light no matter what focal length you zoom to.
Next, how did it actually perform. Well it is basically very sharp. I am sure if you put it head to head with the Nikon or Canon 24-70mm f/2.8 and fully zoomed in you would be able to see the difference. But the lens was incredible. It was so very sharp. The images were stunning. I have used a number of sub $500 lenses, and it is almost impossible to get this sharp of an image in that price range. The things that are out of focus in this football image are either because of motion blur or they are outside of the depth of field area of sharp focus. I was shooting with my minimum shutter speed set to 1/320th of a second in auto ISO and the shot is at ISO 2,200. I could have gotten 1/500th of a second and gotten less motion blur and a sharper image.
Next, the lens focused very fast. It was incredibly responsive. I never had an issue with it struggling to find focus or hunting for the focus. And it grabbed the focus spot on so quick. When I set the focus mode to continuous the lens tracked the moving subject very well. I would not recommend this lens for football, only because the 75mm max focal length is just too short. But I can totally see using this lens for basketball if you are courtside. So that fast autofocus will be very handy shooting that quick action. The lens zoom action was also very smooth. The lens was very lightweight too.
So bottom line, this lens is half the price of the Tamron 24-70mm f/2.8 lens. It is well worth the investment, and a great lens to shoot. I would recommend it for shooting portraits, taking out on family outings, a good general walk around lens, and sports where you are fairly close to the action. If you want something for shooting football or soccer then this is not really your lens, especially if you cannot get right on the sidelines. I would think that if you want to take a single lens for your camera on a day outing or vacation then the best two choices would be either this lens or an 18-200mm lens. This lens does not have the long reach of the 18-200mm lenses, but it has a very fast aperture, sharp images, and it is very lightweight. In my opinion I would recommend this lens to most shooters over the 50mm or 35mm f/1.8 prime lenses. A prime lens will always have a faster aperture and sharper image, but they lack the versatility of a zoom lens. And this one is basically the same cost as the 50mm and the 35mm and covers both focal lengths and more.
Feel free to add your opinions on this lens in the comments below.
So if you have been reading my blog postings you know that I recently switched from a Nikon D80 to a Nikon D5100. It is interesting how sometimes a change in cameras can also be an epiphany of a change in how to do photography. The D5100 is a camera that did that for me. Prior to getting the D5100 I would always tell people to shoot the lowest ISO possible. This I still believe. That is not the epiphany. The epiphany is that in the past I laughed at the idea of auto ISO as something ridiculous. Why would you want to let the camera pick a different ISO when you are shooting after all? You might suddenly start to get a lot of noise. With the D80 I was always worried when I started to increase my ISO, and doubly so when I went over ISO 400, that I would get noise in the image and just hate it. Sure there were times I would go higher, like when shooting basketball, so that I could get an acceptably fast shutter speed. But the D5100 is really quite clean much higher than 800. I am even usually happy even as high as ISO 6400.
With the ability to shoot higher ISO cleanly, I can now shoot much higher. And if I am shooting where lighting is changing a lot then I might often miss a shot if I am shooting on manual. As I was running around on my trip in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan I realized that having to keep going in to reset the ISO level was doing the same thing for me missing shots. I often shoot aperture priority when "running and gunning". The challenge is that if the ISO is not high enough my shutter speed can drift down slow enough that I get motion blur in the photos. These two photos of the duck are a good example. I had just started to use the auto ISO setting. I had set the minimum shutter speed setting to 1/60th of a second. The challenge is that I was shooting with the 18-200mm lens, and for these shots I was all the way to 200mm. So I should have been at or near 1/200th of a second for the shot. Several of the shots were unusable. The top shot here is not bad. The shot with the foot raised is awesome but a touch blurry. If I had set the max shutter for say 1/125th or 1/200th I would have gotten a great shot. I was at ISO 140 on both these shots. So I had more than enough ISO to get the shutter speed I had needed.
For those that are not aware, here is how auto ISO works, at least on the D5100. In the menu you set what the maximum ISO you would want the camera to climb to if it needs. You then set the minimum shutter speed you don't want to drop below. On the camera you can set any base ISO you want, but you might as well set to 100 ISO to start with. You then set your aperture in aperture priority that you want to shoot at. As the camera meters the scene and sets the shutter speed if it gets down to the minimum speed you set in the menu it will start to ratchet up the ISO to be able to get the exposure it has calculated. So the camera is still going to try to give you the lowest ISO it can use. So we are still going with lowest ISO possible, but we are also getting an automatic adjustment that will help get those shots we would otherwise miss if we had to set the ISO ourselves.
Here is a shot that I took before starting to use the auto ISO setting. It was very early in the morning. I set the camera to ISO 6400 when I started because it was very dark when I began. Over time the light increased, but I did not drop the ISO on the camera. So this image was shot at 1/4000th of a second at ISO 6400. It is still a nice shot. And I am planning on getting it printed as a jigsaw puzzle for my wife. But I could have had a shot with much less noise had I been using auto ISO. Even if I had set the minimum shutter speed to 1/250th of a second I would have been at ISO 400 on this particular shot.
This shot was not one that was so rushed. And if I had been paying more attention I could have set the ISO lower as the sun came up. But I was enjoying the morning and nature so much I was sort of forgetting the mechanics of photography. The thing is that I should be able to get lost in the moment. The computer in the camera is very very good. So I should be able to get wrapped up in nature and the moment and the enjoyment of it all and not worry about the camera settings and the mechanical and technical parts of photography.
One other thing while we are on the subject of paying attention, my friend the mink. Actually I am going to blame this one mainly on lack of coffee and stumbling on him before I was even ready to start shooting. It was like 6 AM. I had just gotten up, threw on some clothes, and was wandering down to the river next to the campground. I was going to set the camera after I got down there when I stumbled on Mike Mink. I was on aperture priority, but not auto ISO. I also had the camera at f/13 from something the day before. I popped off a number of photos. The camera was shooting at 1/10th of a second. I think that getting anything clear when I was at 180mm focal length handheld at 1/10th of a second is a pretty good tribute to the OS of the Sigma lens I was using. But Mike Mink was moving and so he is blurry. Had I had any sort of sense to check my camera settings I could have ran the aperture much wider and been able to get some decent shots. He hung out for like 3 or 4 minutes or so.
He posed so nice for me too. It was almost like he was modeling for me. Then later he would peek his head up like saying "You still taking my picture"? This became one of those moments I will kick myself forever for not being more mindful. So I showed you some photos that have issues. I learned a lot on this trip. The two big takeaways for me are, first, to be constantly mindful of the camera settings. Take a look periodically, especially when first shooting at a particular time. Make sure you are not shooting some insane setting. Second, make use of auto ISO. Let the camera help you get the shots when you are out in a situation that is constantly changing. Think through the settings for the auto ISO too. If you are shooting your 18-55mm lens with VR you can set the minimum shutter speed to 1/60th of a second, or even a little slower. If you are using the 18-200mm with OS then get that minimum shutter to at least 1/125th of a second or better. The other thing is to get some different series of photos where you run through different ISO settings (jump full ISO settings for this) to determine how high you can go and still be comfortable with the photos from the camera. I will go to 6400 on my D5100. Some others might only go to 1600 or 3200. You need to determine your tolerance. And it might even change a bit depending on what you are shooting. But this is part of getting in touch with the camera.
So in my last blog post I mentioned that I dropped my trusty Nikon D80 in the lake. She never ever came back. I even put her in a bag of rice, but no luck. OK, maybe my wife was right that waiting a week before I put her in the rice was a bit long. I suppose also that it was just beyond hopeful thinking that I could ever see her come back from the photography afterlife. And I had actually been drooling over a new camera for a while. Maybe she just decided to head to the Nikon Pearly Gates because she knew my eyes were drifting on to others. But she was my first serious DSLR. Well I did have a D40.... for about 4 weeks... before I sold her to my son-in-law so I could get the D80. But she had a special place in my heart. I took a load of great photos with her. I learned so much about advanced photography with her. She had been reliable and durable, and should have had a lot of life left still.
Well enough of pining for the past. I borrowed a camera a couple times for some shoots I had. But I had a lot more and this was going to start to really crimp my style. It was also going to impact building up this site and my other photography ventures too. For a very long time I had been looking at the Nikon D7000. Basically shortly after that little gal came out I was lusting after her. I had numerous chances to get her in my hands, and she was a delight. So you would think that I would just run out and get one, or her younger sister, the D7100. It should have been a match made in heaven. But alas, I did not have the money at the moment for that investment. That is why I had still been shooting the D80. What to do???
Well I had been looking some at the Sony Alpha DSLR cameras. I first saw those while watching Matthew Jordan Smith. Then later I found out that Nigel Barker shot Sony too. I am interested in DSLR video, and the Sony has by far the best follow focus of any of the DSLR cameras out there. So I stopped by Marks Photo in Grand Rapids, MI and looked at them. They are very nice. And I could get one with a second lens for just $600 because of a sale they were currently running. I went back home and did a bit more research. I made a list of what I felt were the important things a camera should have. As I went down the list I found two that suddenly were a problem. The first one was the live view in the camera would be a struggle in a studio with strobe lighting. It can be worked around, but it is a struggle. Then I discovered that the Sony could not be shot tethered to my Mac. Well that was it. I shoot tethered in the studio and would never want to give that up!!!! So now I had to refocus again and figure out a solution.
Well as I thought more I remembered that the Nikon D5100 has the same image sensor and processor as my love the D7000. I have also told my students in class that the camera does not make the photographer. And ever since the D5200 came out the D5100 was on a pretty amazing sale. Then Meijer had a special mperks deal for 15% off any general merchandise purchase, including things already on sale. So that would give me another $90 off the already incredibly low price of $599 for the camera with the kit lens. So I hinted (pretty strongly) to my wife about the camera. Well I am now the proud owner of the D5100, and I LOVE it already.
Sure, it is not the D7000, but it performs magnificently. The shots in this blog post were all taken in studio with the camera. They are the first studio shoot since I have gotten the camera. It worked better than my best hopes. The camera is a little small in my huge hands, but it is solid and responsive. Oh, and the shots were taken with the kit lens too. I did that in part to really give the whole kit a good run, and in part because the 50mm that I have is the D model and will not autofocus on the camera. So that will be going on eBay this week so I can get the G version of the lens.
I have been out shooting the high school band in summer band camp this week too. The high ISO performance on the camera is wonderful!! I am able to shoot indoors with the kit lens and get good to great shutter speed. And the VR is letting me shoot so incredibly slow handheld without even working hard at it. This is why I have recently said that the D5100 is probably the best entry level beginner DSLR on the market. You can easily get two to four full stops more light in ISO compared to most other low end cameras out there. That is so important if you don't have the money, or don't want the super shallow depth of field of an f/1.8 or f/2.8 lens.
I have done some video on the camera too. The flip out screen makes it so easy to do video. Sure the follow focus is not all that great. But as long as I plan my shots accordingly then that is not so much of a worry. The files are so easy to pull off the camera. Way easier than getting them off my dedicated camcorder. The only thing now is that I need to build a DIY steadycam for the video work.
I don't particularly consider myself a nature photographer. I much prefer shooting people. I love portrait and fashion shooting. I am really growing to like street photography. I like the idea that I am shooting something that tells a story about people. But sometimes I do get the urge to shoot nature. This last week was one of those times. We were out on family vacation at a lake house in southwestern Michigan. I love the lake. It is very relaxing. I love swimming, and boating, and sitting on the shore watching the sunset. The one thing I did not like about the lake this last week was dropping my camera in the lake and losing both the camera and the lens to the effects of water with electronics. But that is a totally different story.
Well earlier in the day that my trusty Nikon D80 died I was out in a boat with my son. He was trying to fish, and I was playing boatsman for him. I don't particularly care for fishing, or for eating them for all that. But I was being a good dad and helping out first thing in the morning. We got to the far end of the lake where there was a lot of lily pads, and I was hoping a lot of fish too. As I was rowing around I noticed that there were a ton of dragon flies, and birds, and other wonderful nature things in that part of the lake, besides the beautiful lily pads. Right then and there I got hit with the bug (haha) to shoot some nature shots.
So after we got back to shore I trotted up to the house, mounted my Sigma 70-300mm macro lens on the D80, and headed back out. Well maybe not quite that fast. Seems people made an awesome breakfast while we were out. So I ate first. I was worried that the moment would be lost, but all the bugs were there still, and in even greater numbers. The lilies were open even more too. So I rowed around and shot loads of images. I struggled a bit with some of it, not being so experienced with nature shooting. But when I got back to the house and loaded the images on the Macbook I was pleased with what I saw.
Of course as I was looking at the images I saw a number of things I could do better. I was still feeling very energetic and decided that I really needed to go out and try to get a few more shots. I might get lucky at finding some different things later in the day too. This is where the poor D80 was about to meet it's death. The kids and wife were also out in some other boats. They were in kayaks. I figured I would never be able to be fast enough to get good positioning for shots in a rowboat. So I decided to take the canoe that was left on the shore.
So I got the paddle, put a life jacket in the canoe, pulled it most of the way into the water, and climbed in. Well I tried to climb in. This was the most unstable canoe ever made I think. It was also small and hard to get into. Before I knew it I was tipping to the side and ready to go over completely. I was not worried about drowning. I am a very strong swimmer, and besides that I was in just over a foot of water probably. But I did not want to see my trusty camera die. I started hollering to the others to grab the camera. They grabbed the boat thinking I did not want to fall in. I had one hand on the canoe and the other on the bottom of the lake trying to hold myself up high enough to keep the camera out of the water. I saw the lens go in first. Then as the canoe was drifting farther out deeper the lens got deeper and deeper in the water. It did not take long before even my long arms could not keep the trusty camera body out of the water, and it was camera death by water induced electrocution. Well at least I have some really nice nature shots as a final farewell to remember the camera by. Early this next week the photo poll will be between two of the dragon fly photos.
Shooting in a studio is fun partly because you have total control over lighting and the environment. However, you also have the challenge of backgrounds in the studio. How can you get new backgrounds to shoot against constantly without spending an arm and a leg? That is the big challenge. You can purchase cloth of canvas or muslin backdrops. But those tend to cost quite a bit of money, and they are bulky and hard to store without serious issues of wrinkles. This is especially true of ones that are hand painted to look fancy. Some companies, like Lastolite, have some awesome choices. Lastolite has a collapsible reversible system that looks awesome. But the panels are smallish at 5 x 7 feet and run $300 each. Ouch! So I started to think there had to be a better solution.
I had recently seen on CreativeLive photographers making solid color backdrops using foam core boards. Those are the boards that are foam in the center and foil on the two sides. Then one day I was walking through a home improvement store getting some stuff for the house and as I walked by the wallpaper the proverbial lightbulb went off for an idea. What about using that same foam core board and putting wallpaper on it. So I got one 1/2" 4 by 8 sheet ($8.99) and two different rolls of wallpaper that happened to be on sale for $14.99 each, and a can of spray glue. Now one side of the board is brick and the other is a fancy "Victorian looking" wall. The boards are stiff but they are also lightweight.
Katie and I went into the studio to try out the new backgrounds and, as you can see they worked really well. Not only do they look awesome for a smooth solid background, they also butt up against the side wall really nicely in the studio. And I get two different 4 by 8 backgrounds for only around $50 instead of $300. Oh I have wallpaper left too, so I am planning on getting another foam core and doing it up the same. That way I can put the two boards together side by side to get an 8 by 8 wall. Stick them together and clamp them with an A clamp and we are good to go. I am thinking I might need to put a really small L bracket top and bottom to clamp with, and will just have to maybe do a bit of clean up if they show in the photo.
One other thing that we came up with when shooting that day. I had some mirrors that had gotten left in the studio when we took the space over. In a moment of artistic inspiration we decided to start using them for background too. We were able to get some interesting added depth to shots, and more wonderful artistic expression. I also have used the mirrors recently for "reflectors" for light on the opposite side of a strobe. They work really well, although they are a little heavy and hard to maneuver. The lightweight reflectors tend to be better usually.
As you look at these photos take a close look at the lighting. Along with the simple and inexpensive backgrounds, we also used very simple lighting. All these shots were done with a single strobe. That is right, these are all one light photos. Beyond testing the new backgrounds, my other goal during this shoot was to work with just a single light and see what I could get out of it. This made the light setup very easy. I am thinking that in future shoots like this I want to use a reflector along with the light to soften the shadow side just a touch. But I love the intense textures of the shadows and light on Katie. She is really good at finding either a very intense or vulnerable look, and the single light really helps bring that out.
So give the background idea a try, and experiment with single light setups too.
Well the holidays were fun. We had some challenges in our household too, which is why the posts have been a bit dry recently. But that is over now too. I hope I don't see a hospital for a while now. I did have fun at a few family gatherings getting some photos of kids and grandkids though. I also am loving looking at the photos on a 39" LCD television with an Apple TV hooked to it. It is pretty amazing seeing photos cycle through on a very large screen. It has given me an idea to put like a 32" TV on one wall that will cycle through current photos. Then get some smaller digital photo frames and dedicate one each for each of my kids and their families. I will put these around the larger screen. That way I can share a lot of my family photos with people that visit the house.
I also got a nice new tripod as a gift from my wife. I have used the same tripod for over 25 years and it has been about 12 inches too short for me (I am 6'6" tall). Now I can take photos without having to bend in half. It is a Sunpak Ultra 7000. Expect to see it in a video in the near future. And on the gift front I got one of my daughters a used Nikon D40 from eBay. I think it is so important to encourage our children to pursue their dreams. She was shooting really good on my D80 so I felt it was time she had her own camera. BTW she is 11 years old. You can find some awesome deals on a generation or two older models of DSLR cameras on eBay with plenty of life in them.
On the video front I have a lot of plans for this site for 2013. I am opening a studio in here in Sparta Michigan and so will have a place to easily shoot video. I am hoping to have the first video posted by mid January. It will be a review of a very inexpensive studio strobe I found. I have a whole list of other videos that will be coming shortly after that. I am not sure if this is a mid-life crisis or simply my artistic side finally bursting out, but this site and the studio will be getting major attention this year. Please let me know what you think as things get posted on the site by visiting the comments and suggestions section of the site.
I regularly get asked what is the best camera to buy. Or I will be reading different internet posts talking about the same thing. Most of the time when other people answer they simply will say whatever camera they use. Either that, or they will say some expensive camera. Usually their reasoning for the expensive cameras is some take on one of the popular photography cliches. You know them... "oh you need lots of megapixels for a large print"... or "you need the DSLR so you don't get noise in the photo" etc. They fail to do the most important thing that needs to happen before answering the question. They don't ask what you want to do with your camera. So this post will actually break down why you would want different types of cameras.
Point and shoot and camera phones
The least expensive cameras are the point and shoot cameras and the camera phones. These are really good to have tucked in a pocket or purse and have available for those quick shots when you are just out and about. These are also the cameras to get if you simply want nice snapshot photos of family and friends. Camera phones have gotten quite good, and for many people will be good enough. Any of the name brand point and shoots will work pretty much just fine. So something from Nikon or Fujifilm or Canon are great choices. Kodak are pretty nice, but with the future of the company up in the air are hard to recommend at the moment. There are some really cool point and shoots that will have features like being waterproof (to like 10 or 20 feet), or shooting in 3D. So you can get some fun additional features.
The bridge cameras (also known now as superzoom) are some of the most overlooked options. Most people don't even know the term bridge or superzoom. These are the cameras that at first glance look like a DSLR, but the lens does not come off the camera. The camera will run between like $200 and $500. The biggest feature is that they can zoom to extreme telephoto lengths. You will see stickers on them showing values like 20x or 35x zoom. The Fujifilm HS20 will zoom all the way to 720mm equivalent. The cameras will also do macro, and wide angle focal lengths. Most of them will allow you to shoot full manual, aperture priority, shutter priority, and program mode, along with full auto. Many will also save the image in either RAW or JPG format. Pretty much any of them now will do full HD video too.
My advice is that if you want something better than a point and shoot, want a lot of different features like extreme telephoto, and like the idea of the control of manual mode or aperture priority etc. but don't want to invest a small fortune in camera equipment, then the bridge camera is totally the choice for you. I definitely like both the Nikon and Fujifilm bridge cameras. I have not had a chance to play with any of the Canon, Panasonic, or Sony versions. I would assume they would be good too.
A year ago I had a friend that asked my advice. I told him to get the Fujifilm HS10. He was going on a trip to Alaska. When he got back he said that it was the best camera he could ever have imagined getting for the trip. His photos were stunning, and he did not get sore muscles from lugging lots of equipment around. And yes, you can make huge prints from any of those bridge cameras. I will write in a later blog post about printing and some of the stupid stuff you will hear a lot of people say. But that is way beyond this blog post.
Digital SLR (DSLR)
The DSLR is that fancy camera that a lot of people buy. They are most notable for having interchangeable lenses. The biggest name brands are Canon and Nikon. Sony has a really nice lineup now with their Alphas. Panasonic and Pentax both have some really nice cameras, but you don't see them nearly as often. Personally I shoot Nikon. I love my Nikon. I almost went Pentax, but no local retailers carried them. That was probably the biggest reason I went Nikon instead of Pentax. It was like my second choice. Nikon does have a lot of options in lenses and other accessories that Pentax won't have because of more market share.
When trying to figure out which manufacturer to go with consider a few different things. First, do you have other family that uses a DSLR and whom you will want to share equipment back and forth with? This is a good way to save some money on equipment purchases. Second, see if you can find a camera store that carries the ones you are considering. Take some photos with them. Change the settings. Which feels natural to you? Are the buttons in places that seem to make sense? Third, what type of shooting are you going to do most? If you are going to do a lot of sports then you want a camera with fast frames per second. If you are doing sports inside then you want something that will do great high ISO. For most beginners pretty much any of the name brands will work well other than those stipulations for sports. If you want to do video also then it is really important to have an external mic jack on the camera (vital!).
I find that the Nikon and Pentax have the best high ISO results of any of the cameras. The Canon low end have a mic jack on them where on the Nikon you need to be in at least the D7000. The Sony Alpha do the best for frames per second for continuous shooting. Personally I like the menuing and button arrangement of the Nikon by far the best. The other thing with the Nikon that I have seen is that they tend to keep the controls in the same places on all models, so moving up to higher models later is easier to do.
Keep in mind with the DSLR cameras that once you pick a manufacturer you will pretty much stick with them throughout. The reason is that lenses and many accessories are specific to a particular manufacturer. So you get a Nikon and some lenses that fit Nikon, if you switch you need to buy all new lenses too. So take some time with picking your first DSLR body. One nice thing though is that if you decide after 6 months you want to go a different way then usually you can get most of your investment back from a DSLR and equipment on eBay to make the switch. So it is not all money lost.
Other types of cameras and final notes
There are some other types of cameras coming out now. The Nikon V1 is a good example. It has removable lenses on a camera body that is more like a point and shoot (but not really like it either). There are some cameras that are going back to the old rangefinder cameras for construction and styling. There are a number of mirrorless cameras out now. Sounds like some future blog posts to talk about those eh?
I have not gone into lenses and such for DSLRs. That is a fairly involved discussion that will probably be a number of different blog posts in the future. In future posts I will also cover things like filters, straps, tripods, and other accessories. Feel free to tweet me @onewithcamera or post comments below if you have specific things you would like me to write about. I also plan to have a number of additional video postings soon on all of this.
Put your email address in below to get email notifications when this blog is updated.
My name is Rusty, and I am on a journey, almost more of an awakening, to really learn photography. Years ago I did a lot of photography in high school. After raising a family I find I have time once again to pick up the camera. The art form has changed a lot since my high school days. I am also finding that I desire to take my art to the next level. This site is a combination of documenting my journey and teaching you things that I am learning. So in the process of my becoming one with the camera I am hoping to also help you find that inner artist that is inside you as well.