Heya, ladies. I had a lot of fun chatting with y’all in last week’s Open Thread, and I’d really like to do it again.
I’m just about to have lunch so this’ll be fun. Like last time, you can talk about anything you want — ask (or answer) beauty (or non-beauty) questions, talk about your week, post links to cool sites/videos, describe your pet’s penchant for destroying your makeup brushes in painstaking detail (I’m listening!) or whatever else is on your mind.
To help break the ice, here are two questions I’ve been asked a lot lately:
Where’d I get my necklace?
You might’ve noticed I lurve this double-stranded gold necklace A LOT. I wish I could say it’s from a cool indy designer on Etsy, hand made for me, but, uh, it’s not. I picked it up on clearance three years ago in the costume jewelry section at Macy’s. Unfortunately, I don’t remember the designer’s name — I actually think it might’ve been the Macy’s house brand.
What cameras do you use?
From left: Canon PowerShot SD950 IS, Canon Rebel XTi
I alternate between three, and all of them are Canons — a Rebel XTi, PowerShot SD950 IS Digital Elph (Titanium body) and the G11. I like ’em all for different reasons. The main reason they’re all Canons is because they’re what I was introduced to a few years ago. El Hub used to work at a newspaper where everyone on staff shot with Canons, so when I started getting interested in photography it just so happened that he knew more about them than other brands, but I hear that Nikons are great too.
Canon Rebel XTi: Of my three cameras, the XTi handles color the best. Despite the fact that it’s only 10 megapixels, which today is a little on the light side, it produces richer, more realistic colors than either the PowerShot or the G11 and captures nuances the point-n-shoot cameras usually miss.
My favorite lens to use with it is lovingly referred to as the “nifty fifty,” the Canon EF 50 mm f/1.8 lens (about $100). It’s fast and lightning responsive, and I can do lots of cool bokeh effects with it, which are those shots where the background has a blur.
If it weren’t so damn bulky, I’d probably use it more. It’s a big PIA to lug around, and when it’s around my neck the strap starts to hurt my shoulders and neck.
I’ve had my eye on a newer version lately, called the Canon T2i. It’s 18MP (up from 10), but more importantly it can shoot HD video, too, so you can use it with specialized lenses like the nifty fifty to shoot artistic video.
Canon Powershot SD950 IS: This will sound super cheesy, but sometimes I feel like this camera’s an extension of my eye. I’ve never felt more at one with a piece of equipment before, and I know it like the back of my hand. It’s compact and lightweight enough to take everywhere, and once I understood the features I was able to take a wide range of different pictures with it — macros, panoramas, etc.
TIP: To take better macro (closeup) pictures with one of Canon’s PowerShot cameras, give their special macro modes a try. The little flower icon on the dial puts the camera into a mode that allows it to focus on objects placed right up next to the lens.
It’s the most user-friendly and versatile of the three cameras with one minor caveat on picture quality; I don’t think it handles color or detail quite as well as the other two cameras (the XTi with the 50mm 1.8 lens). Honestly, though, the difference is subtle. I’ve shot some of my favorite photos with the PowerShot, and I can’t recommend it enough.
Canon G11: I just picked this up two months ago, so we’re still in the getting-to-know-you phase, but so far I like it. It’s about halfway between a bulky DSLR and a nimble point-and-shoot, with the ability to manually focus and adjust settings like aperture, which are things you can’t do with the smaller cameras.
I wanted something lighter than the XTi that could shoot in AV (aperture priority) mode and create nicely blurred backgrounds. I also like that I can attach my Speedlite hot shoe flash to it, too, which is nice! Only complaints are the price and that it’s not as fast as I’d like it to be.
Have you ever tried?
Oh, one more thing — have you ever tried Boots Botanics Quick Fix Cleansing Wipes ($7) or Pacifica’s Malibu Lemon Blossom Body Wash ($18) and Body Butter ($18)? I used the body wash and butter last night and loved them! They smell just like the beach (in a good way).
Let’s get this party started!
Oh, and please feel free to respond to each other’s comments, too. Talk to you soon.
Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,