So, it's been a busy few months, what with contracts and buying a house and such. We recently moved back to Nashville, Tennessee, after two years living just outside of Jacksonville, Florida. Don't get me wrong, Florida was nice. It was pretty, the weather allowed me to wear shorts and flip-flops ten months out of the year, and we made some great friends. All that aside, we missed the hustle and bustle of the NashVegas life, so when we were looking to buy a new house we landed right back at home.

Before we left, I was asked to be the photographer at my niece's upcoming October wedding. This was finally the perfect excuse for me to go ahead and purchase that digital SLR I've been wanting to get for the past decade. I did a little research, and finally decided on the Nikon D3200. Their Nikkor lenses are perfect for me, because many of them have a Vibration Reduction mode, which is good for guys who drink way too much coffee ;)

I used to take a lot of pictures with my (now archaic) Minolta X-7. It was a great camera, and I would take hundreds of shots to get those ten or twenty perfect pics. Before I was a family man, that wasn't such a big deal, but as a husband and a father you get to be a bit more budget concious. Thousands of dollars in developing costs just don't translate, which is why digital has been such a godsend to the photography industry.

Even better though are the tools. It used to be that you took pictures, got the developed, found the right ones, scanned them in, and pulled them up in Adobe Photoshop for final edits. After you'd tweaked it just right, you either printed your adjustments out on a high dollar photo printer, or had a developer charge you too much to process again on their new digital equipment. Digital cameras have helped remove so many of those steps, and the software has gotten better over time as well.

I've had Adobe Lightroom on my system for some time, but had never really had the chance to play with it much. When we decided we wanted some new wall art in our new house, I went looking through some of the shots I'd taken down in Florida with my new camera. I found one I really liked, loaded it up in Lightroom, and started "tweaking" my image. Exposure and Contrast, Highlights and Shadows, and individual color adjustments and... Wow! Lightroom is amazing. I brightened things up, pulled my greens out more, sharpened things and more and got a brand new pic for my wall.

Now I'm going to have some real fun! Time to get back in my Lynda account and find some good tutorials.