Tuesday, February 16, 2010

**Exciting News**

Well, my baby came!! Everyone, say hello to Nissin, the newest member of our family!

Nissin actually arrived last Friday but a broken battery component forced me to send her back for a replacement. Now we're all ready to go!

What's this mean to you? It's just a flash, right? Well, I try to avoid using a direct flash as much as possible. That's why a lot of my photos are outdoors or close to a window:

See how the natural light just makes the picture pop? It's not too harsh.

Let's say that it's cloudy outside or I can't just get enough light in. I have to use a high ISO setting. On my camera, this is a 1600 ISO. See how it's noisy? That's annoying.

On the other hand, if I use a flash, look what happens! Do you see that harsh shadow?

It's caused by that harsh, direct flash. I need it to provide the necessary light, but I don't really want to be that harsh.

NOW with this new flash I can turn a photo like this...

Look at how there is a shadow, the background is pretty dark and the banana is very much the focus of the shot. It's fine but would need a little photo editing.

....into a photo like this!

See how it's natural? It's at 12:45 in the afternoon and it looks like we have a skylight!

So, I went a little crazy. Please note that these shots aren't the best in the west. I'm still learning how to use the flash! I'll be honest - I didn't edit them at all. I just reduced the size. I didn't want to edit them. Most of my shots have to be edited somehow, but not this time. This is the straight-out-of-the-camera shot!

Jack let me photograph him. Check it out - no shadow!

Once Jack grew tired of me being in his room, I pestered Walter.
Shortly after this shot he just turned around and gave me the cold shoulder. Ouch. Anyway, see how his colors aren't washed out by a direct flash?


ALSO, in other news, Consignment Sale Season starts in just a few short weeks! If you don't want to go to all of them (don't blame you), here's the low-down:

My Favorite: Kid's Closet - It's a larger sale and has some of the better prices in the area. I wasn't as thrilled in the winter as I normally would be, but I think a crashing economy forced everyone to try to get as much $$ as possible. Also - no charge to the public.

Contenders: Here We Grow Again, All About Kids - I don't know enough about either of these sales, but I do know that they both show promise. Large crowds, lower prices and no charge to the public. These sort of sales always tend to be organized and although there may be a line, it always goes fast!

The Bottom: Just Between Friends - I'll go just to look, but I rarely buy anything here. If they have to charge the public to browse, you know it's not a good idea. Most of the cosigners seem to have an inflated view of their items and want to charge you WAY more than what should be expected. This year the JBF in Overland Park is going to kick off the season, so if you do go don't just go crazy. Why pay $10 for Gymboree jeans when you can get the same shorts at another sale for $4?