For some strange reason, we never bothered to take Eitan and Nathan to the Museum of Flight. While figuring out what to do one weekend, we decided it was time to take them.
Of course, I couldn’t resist taking my camera and decided to be a bit creative with the shots.
In particular I found the exhausts on the planes to be rather interesting. The museum itself is very interesting and had quite a few planes for the kids to look at. We wound up spending five hours there!
I have two kids. A four year old and a five year old. They each have many friends. Each of these friends has one birthday per year. Therefore, almost every other weekend we are at one of the bounce houses in the area. Each time, I bring my camera with the hope of trying something new and getting some good shots of the kids.
As a result of this, I think I have a bit of experience from shooting at these places more times than I would like to count.
While visiting my parents in upstate New York over the weekend, Eitan and Nathan had the chance to go sledding for the first time in their lives. This also provided me with a great chance to test the AF in the 5d Mark II.
Recently I answered a question about the best camera for a young child, and since my kids have owned the two most popular models on the market today, I thought I would give our experiences with both of them for those who are interested.
The two primary cameras for young children today are the following. Please note that by ordering through these links you are helping to support this site.
Note that these are really just two cameras. Each camera comes in either pink or blue. Both cameras have been updated recently – but the update is strictly to add more megapixels to the existing cameras. Everything else about them hasn’t changed.
We gave the Fisher Price camera to our older son when he was three years old. He used that until losing it in Jerusalem, after which we replaced it with the VTech.
The Fisher Price is a more basic camera, but we felt that it took more high quality pictures. Here is a shot that Eitan took with it while in Thailand.
The pictures are of a decent quality and generally it exposes quite well. Here’s a shot he took indoors of his brother.
The camera is really no frills. It does not have a zoom, the flash cannot be turned off, and obviously the exposure cannot be overridden. However, for a young child it is extremely easy to use. It is also practically indestructible as it did go flying on several occasions.
Eitan absolutely loved the camera and was heartbroken when he lost it. Rather than buying the same camera, I decided to buy the VTech due to the higher megapixel count and the fact that it has video.
The VTech isn’t as good when it comes to pictures. Although it has more megapixels than the Fisher Price, the optical quality isn’t as good and the exposure is often wrong – particularly when the flash fires.
Here’s an example shot from the VTech. In general we have noticed far fewer ‘keepers’ from this camera.
You can see that the quality isn’t nearly as good as the Fisher Price, despite the fact that it has a higher number of megapixels.
The VTech does have the advantage that it supports video and has games on it. For awhile Eitan played these games a lot. In fact, I think he has used it more for the games than for pictures or video.
For video though, it can be quite funny seeing what happens when a hyperactive kid takes it out for a spin. He took this video when we weren’t watching. (Note: if for some reason the video does not appear here you can also view it at http://www.flickr.com/photos/kirispupis/2993531665/)
He played around with the video for a bit, but no longer uses it.
Recently, Eitan has stopped using the camera completely because it doesn’t zoom. Currently I help him take pictures with my camera, which he loves to do. I have been eyeing buying him the Olympus SW1030, which is rugged enough for his age but is a bit high for our budget right now.
However, between the Fisher Price and the VTech kids cameras, in my opinion (and Eitan’s) the Fisher Price is the clear winner. The VTech has more features and a higher resolution, but the Fisher Price is much easier to use and takes better quality shots.
Posted 4 years, 6 months ago at 1:13 pm. 5 comments
I finally had time over the weekend to take some pictures, including a number with my new 180L. A review and comparison with the MP-E 65 is coming, but for now I thought you would enjoy some shots I took with the kids playing with a new bubble machine. I decided to practice using multiple lights with this attempt. I used a 580EX and a 580EX II triggered with Pocketwizards for the shoot. On flash had a small softbox attached to it while the other used the white card. In general I was happy with the lighting, but more tricky was getting the focus right. Only a number of shots in did I realize it would be a better idea to only use the center focusing point – as otherwise I was getting only bubbles in focus!
Today, rather than showing my own pictures, I thought I would present the pictures from a guest photographer. Today’s photographer is Eitan Calev, who became interested in photography through his father’s interest. He has constantly watched me take pictures for some time now and has decided to take the plunge himself. His first photos were taken with a Fisher Price camera while on vacation in Thailand, but he has significantly improved his skills (and equipment) since then. No longer satisfied with cheap kids’ cameras, he now demands to use the finest equipment and therefore borrows his father’s camera under his supervision.
This picture was taken entirely by him, with his father only helping him to hold the rather heavy Canon 180L lens. Still, I think it is rather impressive that at this age (a few months short of five) he is using the rule of thirds already.
OK, you knew I had to post this at some time or another. As many of you know, I have two sons – Eitan and Nathan – aged four and three. The following are some of my favorite shots of them from the last few years.
Recently I had the opportunity to use a friend’s Nikon D200 camera. As most of you who know me are well aware of, I have never even held in my hands a non-Canon camera. When I was looking to purchase a camera, Canon was the only company that made full frame cameras so the choice was obvious. However, my friend had just received the camera and was trying to figure it out. For most of the time he was using it, but then handed it to me to take a family portrait.
Unfortunately I had never had the chance to use a Nikon before and I was rather confused at what all of the controls do. For those not familiar with Canon and Nikon, they seem to pride themselves in their own languages. For instance
These are just a few examples, but the camera might as well had Japanese written all over it because I couldn’t figure out how to switch to manual mode. I did figure out how to adjust the aperture and shutter speed, but I also couldn’t figure out how to trigger the in camera metering. I’m sure with a few minutes in front of the instruction manual it would not have been difficult to figure out, but I wound up blowing out every picture.
Recently, per my older son Eitan’s request, we took the kids to the Pacific Science Center. This is a rather nice science center not far from downtown Seattle that they both like. It pales in comparison to the science centers in Paris and Munich, but it makes for a few hours of entertainment.
Nathan had a lot of fun with an echo tube – going to it numerous times and clapping or yelling.
Both of them had a lot of fun with the giant bubbles, though for some reason they were difficult to get started that day.
Eitan used a robot to play tic-tac-toe and Nathan was obviously frustrated at how long Eitan was taking.
Nathan and Eitan both had fun touching the sea creatures.
Of course I couldn’t resist taking out the macro lens for some butterfly shots. I didn’t get any great shots, but it was a few minutes of fun. I actually wish that I had the 180mm because butterflies look much cuter when they’re not so up close.
Posted 5 years, 3 months ago at 5:15 am. 2 comments