Monday, 12 March 2012

Never work with Ladies in Hats. You have been warned.

We have got a new camera! Woo! It has a zoomy lens and a screen with icons and everything.

However. Its inaugural run was not an unqualified success.

I'd made this really pretty pair of earrings for my sister based around two purple Czech glass hearts she'd picked out when we visited the Bead Shop on my recent visit. I had designed them really carefully, adding in crystals and a contrasting colour to bring out the purple. I also used my new sterling silver earwires, with special anti-falling-out-of-ears feature. All was set for a really nice photo.

So this is what happened next. First of all, I couldn't figure out how to get macro! Arrggh! No matter how often I pressed the "flower" button on the back of the camera, the screen kept showing me a little icon of a Lady in a Hat. I kept trying, but that Lady in a Hat just refused to budge from the screen. Then when I pressed more and more buttons, just for variety, other icons appeared. They seemed to be of the "look, you are not doing this properly, you really need to read the manual, idiot" variety, rather than anything  useful. It was when all the icons started to flash at me, in a telling-off sort of way, that I got really cross. Why was macro not in the quick start guide? Everyone knows that macro is the thing you really want to play with when trying out your new camera - don't they? Aarrrgh!
These are the colours under natural daylight

Some hours later, I climbed up and got the CD-ROM manual from the very top of the wardrobe. This was, I felt, a rather drastic step. But it did actually have a whole page on macro, so it was worth it. Hurrah! ... But by this time, it was evening, and we were now under artificial light. Nasty sharp shadows! Aarrgh! I eventually solved this one, sort of, by putting a sheet of white paper in front of the table-lamp.

But now I also had to sort out White Balance - aarggh again! It turns out that White Balance is pretty tricky to get right, if you aren't under natural daylight and don't have special picture editing software installed on your computer. First, I tried the camera's auto white balance setting, which the manual assured me "performs best under most conditions". Clearly, "most conditions" did not apply to my living-room after 7pm: auto white balance produced a very pink image. I'm not even going to show you that image. Suffice to say: it was very, very PINK.

Then I tried the "incandescent light" white balance setting. This was slightly better - a bit yellowish, but a definite improvement on the pink. Now I need a daylight bulb, or better: actual daylight.
Evening lighting conditions; macro now working
On the plus side, however, when I was rooting around in the top of the wardrobe to find that CD-ROM manual, I did find a long-forgotten chocolate stash. Which is now considerably reduced in size. It was that Lady in a Hat, I tell you. She drove me to it.

1 comment:

  1. Hi:-)
    Was laughing a little,reading Your blog post:-)
    The photo is nice,but would be nicer on the other background.That 'olive'one makes the colors false and everything looks like in old photos.But...all in all-the earrings are great!