I had a Canon Rebel T1i in my first year, and I loved it to death. That being said, however, I had NO IDEA HOW TO USE IT; literally zero knowledge. I had learned how to use an SLR in a grade eleven Media Arts course, but most of that information went in one ear and out the other. So, I’d use my Rebel on its auto setting and left it at that. I eventually ruined this camera. I won’t go into detail, but I learned that day to ALWAYS keep my camera in a camera bag, and not in a backpack with bottles of things. Yeah.
My parents boldly decided to give me another shot with an expensive camera and splurged on a Rebel T2i (step up!) for Christmas in 2012, a year and a half after the backpack incident. I didn’t have much time to really master the use of my new camera, but I played around with it when I had the chance. Before I knew it I was heading off to Europe on exchange, so I packed my camera without any hesitation.
When I first started out on my adventures my photos were nice, but I clearly wasn’t THAT great. What I’ve noticed is that I’ve always had a great eye for composition but when it came to light settings, my shots were often laughable. A few photos from first semester with obvious progress throughout my travels:
Over the course of the year I’ve really been able to get to know my camera; my photos got better and better with practice! Cue solo France trip (which the blog hasn’t seen yet, so I’m killing two birds with one stone!):
Many friends ask me if the photos I post on Instagram are taken with my iPhone, and the vast majority are! It’s totally possible to take very high quality photos with an iPhone, granted I have a bit of help from my Olloclip lens. Here are some of my favourites (apologies for the white borders on a few! #instaproblems):
And then something life-changing happened, which actually inspired this post! I downloaded Lightroom, Adobe’s Creative Suite photo editing software, and my photos went from pretty awesome to OH MY GOD WHAT IS LIFE (well, for me at least!) Cue Valencia:
Sometimes I look back on older photos and get frustrated because I wasn’t able to take photos of the quality I shoot now, but I also take a huge amount of pride in the obvious progress I’ve made with my photography over the course of this year. Regardless of quality, I love looking back on my photos and taking in the amazing memories that I’ve made while travelling! It may take me longer to walk from point A to point B because I often stop to snap photos, but I love the satisfying feeling of scrolling through them at the end of the day.