Music and Art · New Hobbies

Amateur Photography For Lazy People (Or Why All My Photos Are Of My Cats)

I don’t know about you, but I definitely have different summer and winter hobbies. For instance, I very rarely crochet or knit in the summer. (I also very rarely crochet or knit in the winter, but for different reasons). That type of hobby – one that is primarily done indoors with the purpose of creating warm things – just doesn’t really jive with my idea of what summer is supposed to be. Between the warm weather and having sunlight until 9:00pm, you can do so many other things after dinner (like sit inside watching Netflix and feel guilty that you’re not outside).

Right now it’s winter, which I prefer because it’s more acceptable to be lethargic and lazy and do hobbies that involve sitting down. However, it does occasionally get in the way of things I want to do, like photography. Between it being -3000 degrees outside right now and getting dark at 4:30pm, there aren’t too many options to go outside and take photos. But we’ll come back to that in a second.

Similar to the flute, I have a long, torrid history with photography. I’ve essentially attempted to learn how to be a competent photographer (not professional – I just want to know a little bit about how to operate my camera) 3 separate times in my life. Once when I was in 3rd grade(ish) and all I had to use was a point-and-shoot, 6 years in high school during which time I never learned more than how to develop film, and once taking an adult night school class. After the night school class, I completely intended to keep up my interest in photography, so naturally, I haven’t touched my camera once in the 3 years since.

So now that I’m finally motivated to use my camera again, I’ve discovered a few issues with trying to be an indoor photographer (because it’s cold and dark outside and I’m already in my PJs).

  1. The lighting in my house is terrible. (Seriously. What did the 70’s have against being able to see?)
  2. It’s boring. Inspiration is hard to come by from my usual spot on the couch. (Also, if I ever want to show people these photos, I probably have to clean too.)
  3. Unwilling subjects. The most interesting things in my house are the living creatures. But cats aren’t particularly good at the whole sitting still thing and Adam just looks at me weird when I army-crawl up to him on the floor holding my camera.

I might as well let you see for yourself. The following are the finished products of my first photo shoot. I was going to write “best products” but I thought that might be a little too generous. I’ll let you decide.

A Beginner’s Photo Gallery

Photo #1: This photo is called “Cat in Fog”. Please notice the artistic choice to leave the entire photograph slightly out of focus. This shows the artist’s creative confusion and inner turmoil, as well as her inability to operate a zoom lens properly. We hope it is the latest in avant garde artistry because otherwise there is no hope for her.

"Cat in Fog" (Or How Not to Use Your Camera)
“Cat in Fog” (Or How Not to Use Your Camera)

Photo #2: This photo is called “Millennial at Ease”. Notice that only the subject’s face and phone are illuminated. This symbolizes the millennial’s dependency on technology and how central the phone and fantasy football are to his world. You’ll also notice that he is studiously avoiding the photographer lying on the floor wearing the subject’s own bathrobe. This demonstrates the subject’s feelings toward the photographer and her weird new hobby.

"Millenial at Ease" (or "How to Successfully Piss Off Your Partner)
“Millennial at Ease” (or “How to Successfully Piss Off Your Partner)

Photo #3: This photo is called “I Tolerate You”. The sentiment refers to the subject’s feelings toward the photographer. Notice that the subject is simultaneously still and intensely focused on the photographer, while also being blurry from her desire to run away as soon as feasibly possible.

"I Tolerate You" (Or What is That Apparatus Making the Weird Clicking Noises)
“I Tolerate You” (Or What is That Apparatus Making the Weird Clicking Noises)

Photo #4: This photo is called “Solar-powered Pumas and Foot”. This photo was taken on a cheap camera phone, rather than a professional DSLR. The clarity and normalized colorization symbolizes the photographer’s mistake and frustration in purchasing an expensive DSLR camera when her camera phone is apparently so much better.

“Solar-powered Pumas and Foot” (Or How I Wasted a Ridiculous Amount of Money on a DSLR Camera)

Photo #5: This photo is called “Adam Buys Ugly Wrapping Paper”.

“Adam Buys Ugly Wrapping Paper”

Photo #6: This photo is called “I Really Need To Wash My Windows.” It has also occasionally been informally known as “We Probably Should’ve Brought The Grill Inside Before It Snowed.”

"I Really Need To Wash My Windows"/"We Probably Should've Brought The Grill Inside Before It Snowed"
“I Really Need To Wash My Windows”/”We Probably Should’ve Brought The Grill Inside Before It Snowed”

Join me next time when I discuss the perils of Instagram filters and we discover how not to use a tripod. (Protip: Be sure to secure the camera to the tripod completely. It will work best if the camera actually stays attached to the tripod.)

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