Wednesday, November 12, 2008


Lisa said that there have been several bloggers asking about what cameras we are using to get our pictures so here goes.

Lisa uses a Canon PowerShot point and shoot type camera. It does the job for most of what she wants to take pictures of around the garden and around town. For some situations, she relies on me or my camera for pictures.

Mine is a Canon 350D Rebel xt DSLR (digital single-lens reflex). This is the type of camera that allows you to

interchange lenses, for those of you who don't know. I mainly use a 70-300mm telephoto zoom lens and rarely use a 400mm telephoto. Very, very rarely I also use a 2x extender lens with those, which more than doubles the power of the lens. You see the 400mm lens in the above picture. For flowers and butterflies, I use the 70-300mm lens. That does a decent job but with my old Canon Rebel film camera, I often used a 28-80mm lens with a macro feature. The macro setting allows for close focusing. Unfortunately, I have not been able to get that lens to be recognized by the digital camera even though it works fine with the film camera.
As you can see from her pictures, we sometimes set the camera on a tripod for feeder pictures to keep the camera steady. When we are "out of the garden" , however, this is usually not possible or convenient. Then the shots are hand-held. Lots of blurred pictures due to the unsteady photographer.
Let Lisa know if you would like more information. Don't want to bore you all.


P.S. Don't blame DB for these awful pictures. I took them...Lisa


  1. I love my 100-400 lens, but it certainly does not lend itself to a jaunt in the woods, now does it? :c) A tripod is a must too if you want steady shots, which is why most of mine are not that steady No patience here. Can you tell? Point and shoot the honking

  2. Thank you for all the info. So if I want a new lens for my camera on my Christmas wishing list, which one do you suggest. My camera is an Canon EOS 350D and I want to photograph some close-ups, flowers etc./LOL Tyra

  3. Hi DB and Lisa......gosh you sound so puts me to shame, still trying to work out how my new camera works......

    I am sure there will be lots of people out there who will find this so helpful, it they are thinking of buying a new camera......

  4. Dear Lisa,
    I really love photography. I love seeing what is in your backyard and when you are out birding.
    With the gift giving season approaching it is nice of you to share information about your equipment.
    I do hand held at 500x. It does require a bit of "yoga" stillness.
    Carrying the camera and lens is my weight baring exercise!

  5. Thanks for this DB and Lisa. So much to learn about all these numbers, but DB has really filled in the knowledge gaps well. So if I don't want to change lenses but still want to get sharp bird shots from 10 to 20 feet away would you suggest the 70-300 lens on a dslr? What about the zoom power?


  6. That was interesting. It is always good to see what people are using for their creativity.

  7. Hi and thank you! So much to consider~~I want wide angles with more depth of field and some zoom shots of birds! Is the 18 to 200 mm going to be a good all purpose lens?



  8. WOW! I am impressed. I love taking photos and I love getting good ones... but I think I'll be happy if I can get a digital that has about 10x magnification or so and is fairly easy (for me!!) to operate! :-) I'm really admiring you, though!

  9. Thanks for all this valuable information, DB! I can see the advantage now of having two cameras, one with all the capabilities of yours for good photos of birds, for example. For general garden photos, I like my simple little Sony Cybershot because it fits into my purse:)

    Thanks for being so kind to share this with us--your photos are always so good.

  10. Thank you for posting about your camera! You have the equipment, that's for sure. Canon's are one of the best.

    For me, SLRs would be too much trouble as I carry a camera everywhere, every day. I guess I'm too lazy to change lenses and carry them. A tripod? Probably never :o)

    So I point and shoot with 400 zooming capability and macro function. That's enough for me!

    You use your camera well.

    Bravo, DB :o)


  11. Interesting story behind the camera. I use a tripod when I am outdoors but also have IS or image stabilization lenses now and those almost eliminate blurred pictures caused by my movement and as old as I am getting I jerk around a lot. LOL

    I also use two different Canons. Both are Rebels. One is a year newer than the other one.

  12. Thanks to all for your comments.

    Tyra, I'm sorry but I have not studied the newer lenses available now so can't recommend a particular brand and lens. Make sure that it is for digital cameras. In general I would probably get a fairly low mm lens (in the range of 35 or 50mm or maybe even a little less) for the lower number and with a zoom of as much as is affordable) and be sure it has a macro setting. The amount of zoom is a measure of the amount of variability you will have in magnification so the more zoom you have the more versatility you will have in cropping your picture without having to edit later.

    Q, yes, handholding a 500mm is not easy. I do handhold my 400 usually "in the field" and most are fairly sharp. Handholding my 400 plus 2x is really a challenge.

    Frances, since the zoom power is just a function of the range of the millimeters you have, that is not critical unless you want to be able to also shoot landscapes, flowers etc with the same lens. The higher the second mm. number, basically, the more magnification you have. That usually comes with a higher price tag.

    Gail, the 18-200mm would be a quite good lens. Especially if it has a macro capability. For pictures of wildlife, it might be just a little low but not bad at all.

    Lisa's DB

  13. I've had experience with Canon 35mm film cameras, and loved them. Then I went digital, and over the years I've had Olympus, Konica, Pentax, and Canon. I've used Kodak and Nikon as well (though I didn't own those). By far, I prefer Canon products. I get the best results and they're very user friendly.

    Go Canon! :-)

  14. Lisa and DB - thanks for the informative post, My DH has a Nikon D70 with many lenses that I borrow on occasion when I think and plan ahead. I have a small point and shoot Casio that I love for its ease and portability. Similar set up to yours, and it works well for us. I'd like a fancy SLR that's actually mine, but that just doesn't make sense since they are so expensive.


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