should I take up photography?

We finally bought a DSLR (a lower-end one) a few months ago, and it takes nice pictures in auto mode. We especially like being able to catch things quickly because of the shutter speed. And it has a reasonably good zoom lens, which has helped so much at things like school concerts. We are glad we bought it.

But, I haven’t spent any time trying to learn about what it can really do. And though I’m trying (so hard!) not to compare myself to others, I notice much better pictures in other people’s homes, and on their blogs. I know I don’t have to be on every bandwagon that comes through town — so far I’ve avoided scrapbooking, Twilight, distance running, vinyl letters, and cross fit! — but I do sometimes have photography envy.

Here’s my problem. I’m not all that interested in photography. I don’t really want to invest the time, money, and energy to be good at it. I don’t feel one ounce of passion about it. I just want my pictures to be a little zingier or something. I don’t even know enough about it to describe what I want, but you know what I mean.

It’s a little bit like housecleaning. As much as I want to be all zen and meditative and spiritual about home-making, I am just as happy if I come home and someone else has cleaned my house top to bottom (yes I realize how lucky I am) as I would be if I had done it myself. I don’t really want to clean or enjoy cleaning, I just want a clean house.

What to do, what to do? Will I catch the vision of photography if I take a little class or read a book about it or something? Will I grow to love it more than my laundry? Is it worth the time, even if it feels like a chore, just so my pictures will look more, I don’t know, something? Should I make myself do it, just like I (sometimes) make myself exercise — because it will be good for me? Or do I just stay the course, and be happy with my pretty-good pictures?

PS Does anyone else sometimes not want to do something just because it seems like everyone else is doing it? Why am I so contrarian?

PPS We all have to do some things we don’t really enjoy, which is good for us, and I believe in working hard and not thinking everything has to be fun all of the time. (Raise your hand if you’re trying to convince your kids of this.) But I’m not sure this falls into that category — really just a hobby, right? Do you have hobbies that you don’t really enjoy?

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4 thoughts on “should I take up photography?

  1. Frankly Entertaining (@frentertaining)

    We’re always telly our kids that life is boring most of the time, and that eventually they’ll prefer it that way! I can tell you that after my recent running adventure, I still hate running. I have however, come to enjoy the gym, but I think that’s mostly because of the childcare!
    As for photography, I took an amazing class online at jessicasprague. It’s great for learning the different settings on your dslr, and how to get the most out of it.

    Reply
  2. Tammy Schick

    It is so funny to read this post (I started with the most recent) because I was just thinking – what adorable pictures of Mary! You totally caught her personality and showcased that in a very casual way. The REAL Mary. That my dear is a talent. And by the way: I think the whole reason these SLR cameras have auto is for us to use it. I’m not smarter than a computer; and when the computer inside my camera decides what I need – who am I to question him? The ONLY time I take it off auto is when I am taking super-fast action shots and then I go with the little running guy. Anytime I try and get creative, I always screw it up. The “auto” pictures always turn out the best. The TRICK: Enhancing them in your photo program. Just a quick click on different effects makes you look like a photography artist!

    Reply
  3. Kozue Macmichael (@KozueMac1)

    Hi Liz! I just love reading your blog. I find many things in common with you. I feel the same way you feel about photography. In fact, I felt that way about many things… like facebook, pinterest, blogging, twitter, and other things that friends are doing. I tried a little, and then didn’t do much for a while. As you might noticed, I’m trying them again, but this time I think I know what I want to accomplish by using them! I don’t like the feeling that I’m already so much behind, but I try to focus on the progress that I’m making. I might take photography lessons as well as video editing.

    Reply

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