I have spent some time recently looking back through a bunch of photos that I have taken from the year 2007 up through today. I can only really go back to 2007 because that is when I started taking pictures with anything other than a cell phone and back in those days cell phone cameras were just awful! I started out with a Fuji E550, a decent point and shoot camera that got the job done. Soon after I upgraded to a Sony DSC-W80, another point and shoot camera which captured much clearer images and much better video.
From 2007 until 2008 most of the photos I took were basically snapshots. Cool stuff that I would see around and document by taking a simple picture. There was to occasional gem in there that was something more than a just picture, but those were few and far between. I played around with some photo editing here and there as well, but nothing much to enhance the quality of the photos. Mainly just things that I though would look cool. A color filter here, a vingette there and maybe a focal blur. Nothing special, just nice.
I fell off the map in 2009. Virtually no photos taken at all until I picked it back up early in 2010. I started off taking more of the same except I was getting decent shots in much more often. I was still using my Sony at this point, but I was experimenting with different perspectives and angles. I also got more into photo editing. Enhancing colors, contrast, tinting, shifting the hue and manipulating the details a bit. Mostly subtle enhancements, but enough to make certain things pop. The composition was certainly better as well, still most of it was basically pictures of stuff, places, people and events.
In the fall of 2010 we finally got our first DSLR camera. A Nikon D3100 which I’m still using to this day. I was taking much better photos right away with this camera. Sure there was still the occasional snapshot, but everything was very composed and needed little to no editing. I was finally taking photographs! And after a few months I stopped, life got in the way.
I finally picked it back up again this year and I haven’t looked back. This time around I know what I am looking for before I compose the actual photograph. I can see the finished product in my mind before I look through the viewfinder of the camera. I can see how I will enhance the color, what I might crop out and how I am going to edit the photo to get the final result that I want. Somewhere in my head despite all of that time away a light bulb turned on and suddenly I am able to get results.
Like all things in life photography has certainly been a journey. I’ve come a long way from 640 X 480 self portraits from a VGA camera!