Interview with New Photographer David Kanigan

How old were you when you picked up your first camera?

How old? The wrong side of 50.  I’ve never owned a non-smartphone camera until COVID hit. And never really used my smartphone for “real” photographs, even though I loved the beauty of Photographs.

How long did it take you to decide on the camera you purchased and what process did you go thru?

30 days. When I get Something, Anything, in my head, I need to get it done. And I can’t explain why a camera all-the-sudden became a necessity. But it did. I read online reviews. (Many)  I watched Youtube video reviews. (Many) The three primary drivers in my search were weight, ease of use and low light capability.  Camera + lens weight was the #1 need as I planned to take the camera on my morning walks.  Ease of use because I’m not much into the fine print. And low-light, because this exercise-hobby needed to be started and completed in the twilight / pre-sunrise time of the day.

How do you manage the photos you take a day?

I use Google Photos for my photo storage and management system.

Before COVID you traveled extensively, how will you make photography part of your day once you resume travel?

That is a really good question.  I have no idea.  But I have grooved my morning walks into my day, it is going to be so difficult to give this up. Makes me sad to think about that day now that I’m noodling it.

What are the top websites you turn to for learning new skills as a photographer?

I skim many sites and follow many YouTube vloggers.  But I can’t say that I’m looking for technical tips. I prefer to learn as I go and fall forward into new learnings.

Can you share with me your top three favorite photos to date and why are they in the top three?

Wow, such a great question. There have been so many photos that have inspired me.  And I’ve attached three of my most inspired moments. I wish I could tell you why I was inspired, but I can tell you that they were all goose bump moments.

What is your goal as a photographer? Are you learning to take great photos or to go beyond and become a professional?

As long as I enjoy photography, I’ll continue. When the enjoyment stops, I stop. I’m a momentum player in most things I engage in.  I have no interest in becoming professional.  And yes, I find I learn a wee bit more each time I pick up the camera. There is so much I don’t know, and it will take me years to figure it out. That works for me, as I’ve always been a slow learner.

What the weirdest object you’ve taken a photo of?

Dead possum on the highway on my walk.  2 consecutive days I took a shot of him. Can’t explain why but it moved me.

Do you read all the instructions or jump right in and start shooting?

Never read instructions. Don’t look for help. 

You’ve fallen in love with Geese, what other wildlife have you learned to love?

I love all birds (long story detailed why here).  And I’ve come to seek out Cormorants, my spirit bird. (More on that here).

What photo imaging software do you use? 

I’ve tried and have a subscription to Adobe Lightroom but I’ve rarely used it and I’m thinking about canceling my subscription.  One of the reasons I chose a Fuji camera was the great colors without any editing.  Love that.

Do you find photography relaxing or frustrating, or both and why?

Another great question. 95% of the time I find it very soothing. Frustrating moments (after a large # of pictures taken) when I don’t know which setting I have inadvertently turned on (or off) that result in blur, dark lighting, etc.  As I said, I have so much to learn.

I hope you enjoyed reading David’s interview as much as I enjoyed talking with him. Please check out David’s website Live & Learn for more great photographs, great quotes, and words of wisdom.

If you know someone you would like to see featured, please leave me a comment, share their website, and why you want to see them featured.

Happy Shooting,

Melinda

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