The Challenge of Digital Photography

The desk my parents got me for my childhood bedroom is located inside my garage. Wrapped in shrink wrap and a blanket it does a fine job of occupying space against the wall. Inside the desk are any number of treasures from youth. In the bottom drawer are a couple of baseball mitts, some folders with various papers and some other odds and ends.

In the middle are drawer are my old Kodak Disc camera, another camera that used 126 film and the first 35 mm I owned. At least I think they are. Truth is that I haven’t looked inside the desk since we moved into this house way back in 2001.

That is ok, because around the same time that we moved in I stopped using film cameras. Digital seemed to make more sense. You didn’t have to worry about taking bad shots. You no longer had to be stuck paying to develop shots that were out of focus or ones in which the subject wasn’t paying attention.

Digital photography was supposed to be the promised land, especially for parents. I suppose that you could say that goes double for new parents. If you ask my middle sister double stands for the number of pictures I am in compared to her. I used to tell her that it happened because mom and dad liked me better and I was much better looking. Not to mention much more humble.

Anyway, when we got our first digital camera I was quite excited. I was excited because like my father I love gadgets. And I was excited because I thought that it was pretty damn cool. For a while I used a film camera alongside the digital. That 35 mm Olympus did the trick and I took some pretty good photos with it. It didn’t suffer from the lag time in shutter speed that the digital one did. That made it easier to catch the constantly in motion children and thanks to one hour photo at Costco I didn’t have to wait long to get them developed.

In time though I just kind of stopped using the Olympus. Digital meant that I didn’t have to pay for film and that I could develop them individually or collectively. Sure, there was the challenge of the lag time, but as technology improved the price of the better cameras came down and some of those issues disappeared.

Still, I have one challenge that I seem to be stymied by. For some reason I am just not good about developing the photos on my memory card with any sort of regularity. I don’t know why, but for whatever reason I just seem to wait until the card is almost full.

It is not a smart way to go. Do you know how many photos fit on a 1 GB card. Not only does it get a bit costly to develop 1,298,986 pictures at once, it takes way too much time. And then there is the album dilemma. When you print out 36 or even 72 pix it is easy to see that they all get filed in an album, but 1,298,986 pictures is an entirely different story altogether.

Last week I asked one of my buddies what he was doing about this. He told me that he had a system. He takes his photos and uploads copies of all of the photos to his iPod and then backs it up on his computer and an external hard drive. He claims that this saves him a lot of time and money on albums that would just get dusty.

But if you ask me there is something nice about being able to hold a photo or flip through an album.

On a related but somewhat separate tack I have to blog about what happened to all of the Super 8 my folks took of us and the status of the home movies of my own children, but I’ll save that for a different time. For now I think I’ll call it a night.

See you all in the A.M.

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  1. Jack February 11, 2008 at 5:59 am


    I use Costco on a regular basis, but still not often enough to save my butt.


    I have thought about getting one of those, but am concerned about how much it would cost in ink.


    I can understand how you might think that. Life is so very busy.

  2. The Misanthrope February 10, 2008 at 9:17 pm

    My biggest regret is that I foolishly did not get a video camera to capture daughter’s childhood. I thought we’d never go back and watch them, boy was I wrong.

  3. Gila February 10, 2008 at 6:42 pm

    My parents bought my brother and sister-in-law this cool printer for printing out photos. Did I get one???? Nope!

    Of course, I also have not provided them with any grandchildren either.


  4. tamaraeden February 10, 2008 at 5:02 pm


    Have you tried Costco’s digital developing?

    If not, you can easily upload from your computer and they are ready as early as an hour or next day if you prefer. I just submitted 53 photos and they were ready the next day for $10 .

    That might help you…of course, then you must go actually pick them up. 🙂

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