Sometime in the mid-nineties, my interest in improving my photography began in earnest when I signed up for a photography course through our community college. Ivy Tech didn't have a dark room at the time, so we just learned about the camera and principles of photography, but I enjoyed using the Pentax K1000 SLR camera I had to purchase for the course for several years after that. But in 1999, I traded in every camera I owned so that I could buy a good digital camera, an Olympus C3000. It was a good little camera, however, I wore it out and subsequently replaced it with an Olympus C5050. My dream is to eventually own a Digital SLR!
I've found that having my own "virtual" dark room, in essence digital image editing software like Photoshop, CA Media Master, and MS PhotoDraw, provides me with more personal satisfaction than just shipping my film off to an overnight commercial developer.
I set up a virtual gallery to complement my husband's furniture refinishing business Second Looks and to offer people 'free wallpaper' for their computer desktops. I have also submitted some photos to an on-line stock photography company. It was this experience that made me realize how inadequate my old 300 dpi scanner was becoming, so I recently invested in an upscale consumer model film scanner, a highly rated albeit somewhat dated and therefore more affordable Polaroid Sprintscan 4000. Supposedly these specialized scanners can create 32 and 64M files from all your film negatives and slides - and they provide the darkroom software to 'positivize' the scanned images.
My most recent venture has been into scrapbooking – both the digital and the physical kind – no matter which you do, you still use computers, I discovered, and I love them both. I recently attended a “crop” fund-raiser for an agency for which I work. I got to help people print their digital pictures for physical scrapbooking. I don’t think you can fully appreciate the digital scrapbooking experience unless you’ve shared and worked with the actual physical tools.
I have also happily ventured into digital video cameras and editing through my masters degree work at Purdue where a classmate and I developed some case-based video instruction. First I acquired the Sony digital video camera and the Firewire - then I had to install the GIGABYTES and the RAM! =:o
So my question is ... who needs photo albums anymore?