Member Since: December 31, 06
BiographyI'm an avid photographer with a not very good camera, but I make the best of what I've got, or try to!
My self- description would be "diletante". I've got a very wide range of interests, and 'way too much education (despite my bad spelling).
Together with my husband, a onetime cellist who turned eye doctor, I live outside of Chicago. I studied psychology among many other things, and went on to grad school to study to become a hospital chaplain. I am currently self-employed. I have lots and lots of interests. I'm an avid volunteer, a political junkie (very liberal) an animal lover, a music lover (many types of music) and have lots of other ecclectic interests.
We have a total of five children, both natural and "acquired" (step, foster) who live with us on a rotating basis, whenever they choose/need to. All five are young adults, ranging between the ages of 19 and 24. Three of them are currently in college. (I can't believe they're that old! I'm not old enough to have kids that old!!)
This site is great, and I appreciate it a lot. Thanks to everyone who contributes! Beth
Artist's StatementI have discriminating tastes in photography and am very critical of photos, generally speaking. That's what comes with having been a film and photography criticsm major once upon a time.
Actually DOING photography, however, is a different kettle of fish! I can tell a good photo, but it's a lot tougher to create one!
I don't consider myself a very good photographer, although I love doing it. Improving takes time and practice. Some people have a natural "eye" for framing and composition. Mine is not so natural. It takes me lots of work and practice, but the effort is usually enjoyable. Only occasionally is it incredibly frustrating.
I have not gotten into manipulating images, electronically or otherwise, but there's some good stuff out there from people who are doing that kind of thing. My approach is straightforward, old-fashioned, unelabourated photography (with a newfangled digital camera).
I got the idea last year that since I was out every day walking in the nature preserve, I might as well photograph the experience. [I have two dogs, a deaf Great Dane, Beasley, and a dumb Bichon Frise, Bob, who need lots of exercise, and my house backs up to a small wetlands nature preserve which was created just a few years ago.] Thus on January 1, 2007, I began a project which lasted a year, of photographing the wetlands on a daily basis, in changing lights, conditions, seasons, times of day, and so forth. It's been a fun project. It's taught me a lot.
Camera EquipmentAbsolutely nothing special, but I do believe that the camera and equipment are secondary to the photographer. I worked for a couple of years in a photography store during college. Many of the store's customers were obsessed about their equipment, and spent lots of time and money researching and acquiring the very best. But they were lousy photographers!!!! I have noticed that this trend still exists today.
I've got a Kodak Easyshare digital, not an SLR. (I LOVE digital!!) It's a pretty good little camera, I must say. It's got 7mp and 12x optical zoom, and is very handy when I'm out in the nature preserve.
Even though I like my little Kodak and don't like getting hung up on equipment, I'd still LOVE a better camera. I dropped strong hints to Santa on that topic, but Santa was too poor to get the kind of camera I would like to get as an upgrade, yet. I'm hoping Santa will be able to save up and find a way sometime. A somewhat better camera would enable me to do so much more...
I don't use filters for the most part, because the polarizer just doesn't have an effect I like most of the time, and I don't like to bother with switching around filters most of the time.
I'm not opposed to zoom lenses, and find they are very handy. Switching lenses is not a thing I'm fond of doing, so any sacrifice I make by using a zoom is worth it to me.
One piece of equipment I love and cannot do without, however, is a "tripod/walking stick" combo from TechTrek. It is wonderful, and I carry it all the time.
Favorite PhotographersLove many photographers of different types, but especially I guess, some oldies. Eliot Porter probably tops my list. Galen Rowell is also quite amazing. Both of those are nature photographers, of course. I also love Edward Weston, Dorothea Lange, Dianne Arbus, Edward(?) Steichen, and Walker Evans. All of the WPA photographers were just amazing, in my book. And, OK, sue me, I like William Wegman, with his Weimaraners.
Anybody else love Wunderground photos(web site)? If you haven't seen it, I would recommend it lots. There's some good stuff there sometimes.