THE LIGHTNESS OF BEING
The Digital Photography School has a great little primer on taking better holiday pictures. It goes through 16 ways to take better pictures.
But to put many of these tips to use, one needs a camera that's a little beyond the tried and true point-and-shoots I've long relied on.
A couple of weeks ago, I decided to try the latest Nikon digital SLR camera for mainstream amateurs like me, the D40.
And this was despite having owned a couple of other digital SLR cameras by Nikon and Canon in the past.
It was easy to rationalize NOT to take them along because of that issue, especially in terms of being able to pack the camera along with it's paraphernalia within a two-piece carry-on limit.
But those SLRS represented the state-of-the art two to three years ago. Technology has marched on.
As a result, the D40 is different.
It's much smaller and lighter than most other SLRs. And I took a gamble on Nikon's quality coming through in a camera that one can get for under $600 with an auto-focus kit lens.
"The D40 is perhaps one of Nikon's most important digital SLRs. It's certainly their smallest and lightest, their most affordable and ships with a fairly decent kit lens too..."
"Nikon have also obviously worked to ensure that no corners were cut in image processing..."
"In everyday use the D40 is just what it set out to be, a very capable, compact, lightweight and easy to use camera which makes a perfect first step for anyone wanting to get into digital SLR photography."
If you're ready to move beyond the point-and-shoot cameras, the Nikon D40 is a great way to start down the SLR path. And it's just in time for the holidays.