Exploring My DSLR

Unlike in 2011, when I was overly excited about using my DSLR, I haven’t been taking a lot of photos with my camera in the last two years. I’m paying for it because I have nothing to print now that I want to have some of my kids’ photos framed. I really do love my iPhone because it lets me easily and quickly capture moments, plus it’s light-weight compared to my DSLR, but the quality of the photos are just a bit blech.

I feel bad because most of The Minis’ moments are on Instagram when they’re supposed to be displayed on our house’s wall or pasted on a scrapbook I started but never finished. Note to self: Get back to scrapbooking! And so recently, I reunited with my camera. I’m leveling up this time because I am venturing into manual mode. This is awesome because I finally have the balls and patience to use the portrait lens that A bought for me last year. I refused to use the portrait lens before because I felt like there were too much terms and techniques that I have to learn to make it work, so I just settled with the lens that came with my DSLR and took shots in auto mode. On days when I am extra lazy, I turn to my iPhone.

Anyway. Like I said, I’m finally trying out manual mode. One article that really helped is LeAna’s post on photography for beginners by a beginner. Unlike in photography forums where seasoned photographers would use terms that make my nose and brain bleed, this post is very basic and easy to digest. A nice follow-up post to read on photography — specifically taking great photos of your children — is Lisa Tichané’s Rock Your Toddler Session. It has very good tips and techniques on embracing the essence of toddlerhood and capturing moments that define that age.

I decided to try out some of the tips I got from these articles today. I was quite impressed by the results. I can’t say that they are photo gallery-worthy (well, they are photo gallery-worthy in our house), but they are much better than my iPhone shots. 😉

I first applied what I read on The Princess. This afternoon, her dad came home and asked her if she wanted to go with him to the office. She excitedly said yes, but requested that I prepare her princess dress. The princess dress she was referring to is her grey cat shirt with sparkly pink shades and her two year-old tutu that’s super short already.

toddler photography

I still need to work on my focus; I’m already reading up on that. Focus has always been my problem, which is why I was never a fan of manual mode.

After A and The Princess left the house, I discovered a cute setup that my little girl did with Furby and her brother’s tow truck:

toddler photography

See how vibrant the colors are? I got that result by adjusting my camera’s ISO. Many thanks to LeAna for helping me understand this feature!

I also wanted to try the tips I read from Lisa Tichané, so I challenged myself by attempting to take a clear photograph of my very active boy. The result:

toddler photography

I took this shot while he was quickly crawling towards me. You see, every time I take the camera out and point it to him, he’d excitedly crawl towards me… which is why I rarely get clear photos of him. But that won’t be the case now that I know the trick!

I also tried taking a photo of our new puppy, Mila. This is her inside her little, temporary cage where we keep her every time we need to clean up after her (she’s still in the potty-training stage).

dog photography

She is obviously too big for the cage. In fact, she can climb over it already. Luckily, she sort of established a pee-poop schedule so I know when to take her out to the garden.


I am thinking of taking on a photography challenge so I can keep myself learning more about my DSLR and improve on my photo-taking skills. I have yet to think of how I’m going to go about it, though. For now, I will settle with random, unscheduled posts with photos I’ve taken.

Kimberley Reyes

Kimberley Reyes is an Online Business Manager for entrepreneurs who are ready to get off the hamster wheel and step into their CEO shoes. On top of helping her clients get organized and scale their businesses, she is also happily busy raising her five kids with her firefighter husband.

This Post Has 9 Comments

  1. I am sooo lazy when it comes to shooting photos that’s why my husband is our official photographer:-) However, when I started blogging, I thought of saving for a DSLR for myself. He said we’ll buy a new one, he gets it and I use the old one for practice hehe, ang daya no!

    1. Kim Reyes

      That’s where I need A LOT of improvement: food photography. Haha! I only know one angle when I take photos of food. 😀

  2. Janice Lim

    I would SO love to have a DSLR. Unfortunately, I still have to save up for one. I took photography classes in college and back then we used a manual SLR and film. Haha! Those were the days. But I miss it and hope that I can get back to photography soon too.

  3. Mitch Ryan (@mitchryan23)

    DSLR is definitely different from the point and shoot camera that most of us are used too. There are so many things to remember and consider before taking a shot and editing it.

  4. Patty | MrsC

    I often am too lazy to bring my DSLR around with me, too, but I know that I should! Looking forward to seeing your shots from whatever photography challenge it is that you will end up doing. 🙂

  5. Camille Aguila

    Great! I love taking snapshots too. It just frustrates the beginner in me when i see shots from photography blogs which are beyond exceptional. Ugh. But i have learned a lot in youtube. Sarap nga magaral ng DSLR. 😀 more power to your photo-taking projects!

    1. Mom On Duty

      Diba? It’s frustrating when you can’t take a shot that’s as good as other photo bloggers. 😀 That’s why I resorted to using my phone. Nawalan ako ng gana. But I realized that photography takes a lot of practice so that’s my challenge. I’m looking forward to joining a workshop, too, so I can expand my knowledge about photography.

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