The Magical Picture Taking Box

I really need to learn how to work my camera.

I have this digital camera. It’s a Canon Powershot A410. Which means nothing to me. I didn’t buy this camera. In fact, until I got it last year I was still relying on my trusty old Pentax circa 1994. Yeah see, I’m just really not a gadgety type of person. I hate trying to figure out technological gadgetry. I know, you’re probably thinking, “get a grip! it’s just a freakin’ digital camera – my 80 year grandmother has one!” right? It’s not like it’s some really high-tech doo-hickey…like an iPhone…or…a…spectrometer! (yeah that's right, you heard me...a spectrometer)

It’s not even one of those really slick digital cameras with all kinds of bells and whistles (lord knows something like that would send me over the edge!). It appears to be a simple enough gadget. However, this has proven to be untrue. There are many confusing options regarding flashes and zooming and foreground/background and who-knows-what-else. Combine these mysterious settings with my complete lack of knowledge in the area of photography and one ends up with photos like those below.

Dan and I went to Opryland last night to take in the spectacular Christmas light displays. As I was walking out the door of my apartment I saw my camera sitting there on my desk and in a last minute decision, I snatched it up and stuck it in my bag…just in case. Once we got there, the lights were so incredible and the sparkly festive environments so exciting, that I whipped out my camera determined to capture some of it. I would randomly push a few buttons, click the shutter and get some fuzzy, drunk-looking image. So, then I would push a few other buttons, click the shutter and get some dark shadowy-looking thing. I pushed buttons all evening and ended up with…ZERO decent pictures. How? How is that even possible? Is it the camera? Does the camera suck? Or do I suck?

My goal is to read the manual in the next couple of days. Maybe that will provide some enlightenment…
I’ll let you know how it goes.


Terah Lynn said...

Had you not been to see the lights at Opryland before? They are so magical and totally puts one in the Christmas spirit. Sorry your camera was being silly and I do believe it was your camera. Those digital gadgets can be tricky!

cathryn said...

Nope, didn't make it out there last year...and this is only my second Christmas here. It was definitely something to see!

Maybe you should give me some photography pointers cuz your photos always turn out so good! :)

Gibbarella said...

I dont think they are that bad for Christmas light pictures. Most of the time when I take pictures of dark places with Christmas lights I expect to get what you got. It was mainly your flash. You have to read the manual to find out which one is best for Christmas lights. Good luck.