Denise Goldberg's blog

Sunday, January 22, 2006

A Suze kind of day

So what's a Suze kind of day? Suze is my sister, and somehow she always seems to have her days packed with way more activities than can reasonably fit the hours of a normal person's day. And that's the kind of day I had today...

It was cold when I woke up, temperatures in the 20s but the sun was shining. I wanted to ride my bike (crazy person that I am!), and I wanted to spend some time playing with my new camera. In warmer weather I would bike, stop and take pictures, bike some more, stop again, bike some more... But when I ride in the cold, I usually just ride. It's too easy to get really chilled by stopping.

I often wait until it warms up a bit before I head out on my bike. It was only supposed to warm up to the mid 30s, and while I seriously thought about waiting, I knew that would probably shorten my time with my camera. So - I headed out on my bike in the morning, dressed for temperatures in the high 20s. Luckily, I've finally figured out the right layers for that temp! 20 miles later, I was home again. Time for a warm shower, some food, and time to head out again.

Yesterday my camera and I stayed close to home. Today was a day for a change in scenery, so I headed to the New Hampshire coast. There's a section north of Hampton Beach that makes for nice walking, and at one point the ocean is on one side of the road and a marshy lake is on the other side. I parked the car and headed north on foot, stopping often to take pictures. I was carrying two cameras, my standby Canon S400 (Digital Elph), and my new SLR, a Canon Digital Rebel XT. I was hoping to take the same pictures with both cameras so that I could compare the results. I did take a few duplicate shots, but somehow it didn't seem to be the right time for that!

There are often sea gulls and ducks walking on the ice and swimming in the open water in the lake, but today there was also a pair of Mute Swans. I was crouched down - not too close - taking pictures, when a car pulled up. A couple popped out of the car, and Ann immediately pulled out her cameras with very serious lenses along with a couple of containers of corn. Apparently she has been photographing these birds for the past couple of winters. She told me that she has gone so far as to help release them on the occasions when they've managed to get frozen to the ice. I talked cameras for a bit with her cohort (husband, friend, unfortunately I didn't get his name), mainly about cameras. He is the one that researched cameras for Ann; she was shooting with two Canon EOS 20D cameras (so she didn't have to change the lens each time she wanted to switch; she just grabbed her other camera!), and he had a tiny SD200 - sweet! It was fun talking with both of them, and hopefully I'll remember some of the tips I got from them. We must have been talking for 45 minutes in temperatures that hovered in the mid-30s. That was a great encounter; and it just goes to prove that talking with strangers is a good thing.

Pictures from my experimentation today can be seen at my Playing with Cameras - Winter 2006 smugmug gallery: http://denise.smugmug.com/gallery/1147802

Happy duck, paddling across the open water


Ah, these birds know who has the food!


Talking? No, eating!


Curious about the differences between the cameras? Well, they both take beautiful pictures. For proof...

Photo by Digital Rebel XT
Photo by S400