When I was in high school, I made the executive decision to take digital photography both semesters my sophomore year. I’m not necessarily the best picture-taker out there, but I kind of know my shit when it comes to photography.
I learned all the essentials – rule-of-thirds, micro, proper lighting, depth of field, even how to use Photoshop. It was also pretty cool having this free pass at the end of the school day to run amok and take pictures.
Now, in high school, we weren’t as privileged as the J-school and they had us use basic digital cameras or our own, if we had one. We learned where all the settings were and which ISO to capture the photo on. Needless to say, my first experience manually taking photos with the Nikon D7000 was irritating, especially when I knew I had a good shot. It was just difficult to capture it.
One of the perks from taking digital photography in high school was the ability to go on a full-on photoshoot all hour. When you don’t have any inspiration, the best thing you can do is to just start taking pictures. Since I can only have three hours with this thing, looking for potential for my “Seeing Red” assignment was cake. Messing with the f-stop, shutter speed and ISO was not. Probably a good indication that photojournalism was not for me.
I took an estimated 100 shots once I figured out the Nikon. I really wanted to take some cool action shot with my cats, but they were too concerned with trying to get out the screen door and antagonize each other (that’s what happens when you have two dominant, male cats — they love to play fight). These are my favorite shots of them, even though they don’t qualify for the project.
Ralph (left) is my two-year-old barn kitty. Whiskers (right) is my nine-year-old family cat. They’ve officially been living with each other for over a month now. When I brought them together, I honestly didn’t think they would run into each other and would give each other enough space. But Ralph being the baby loves to follow Whiskers. Lick him. Touch his tail. Chase him on the regular. And Whiskers, who has been an “only” cat for the past nine years of his life, does not appreciate Ralph being all up in his grill. I think they’ve grown to like each other’s company though. Whiskers, who was a whopping 16 pounds, has inevitably lost weight due to all the running around, and Ralph is learning to play nicely.
I thought this was a really cute picture because it shows Ralph eagerly watching Whiskers, while Whiskers is just like “Let me outside!” I think I took this picture on a higher (?) f-stop because the background is more in focus than the foreground. Ralph looks like a bat cat. The natural lighting to take pictures that day was awful also (overcast, shaded, around noon), so this one actually didn’t turn out all dark and required no flash so that was a plus.
See, here’s Ralph reaching for Whiskers and he’s just not having it.
I was incredibly disappointed in the macro capabilities of the Nikon D7000. I missed out on some up-close pics of the cats (and other pictures for my project, haha) because the range of the f-stop sucked. Also, though the flash was helpful on days like that day, the shadow of the lens ruined some of my pictures. Then again, I’m glad I’m not a photojournalism major but it was fun being able to run around, experiment, and put my photo “skills” to the test again.