I had a wonderful father’s day this year, capped by weather fine enough to inspire a photo safari to the St. Louis Zoo just before closing time on Sunday. (Click the picture if you want to skip the words and just enjoy the photos.) This gave me the chance that I had been waiting for: fine light and interesting subjects on which to spend some quality time with my new (to me) Nikon 75-300 f4.5-5.6 zoom lens.
I was an early adopter of digital photography, purchasing an Epson digital camera in about 1996. It took crummy pictures but I loved the advantages: instant gratification and an easier way to organize the photos than boxes of prints and negatives. I also appreciate the economics. I swapped the Epson for a Sony Mavica camera, which happily turned all of those AOL floppy disks into “free film.” These days my camera, like most, stores pictures on reusable memory cards and my computer has a huge hard drive.
Since yesterday’s photo shoot was an educational excursion, I shot a lot of pictures, 253 to be exact. This would have been financially impossible in the old days when I shot Agfachrome. Even had I shot the Plus-X that I bulk loaded for about 25 cents per 36 shot roll and developed in my kitchen, that would have represented seven rolls of film. When would I have found the time to develop and print all of those pictures? Digital photography made the experiment practical. Less than two hours after getting home, I had looked at all of the pictures, learned what I needed to from them, and deleted 212 of the pictures, leaving just the 41 that I like well enough to keep.
It is simply magic to me that I can take pictures at 6:00pm, project the best of them on the wall at 9:00pm, and share them with my step-mother (who lives 1,000 miles away) at 10:00pm. As I talked to my step-mom about my pictures, she told me about the photo safaris my father and she used to take to the zoo. It’s nice that my dad and I share this. He got me started in photography ages ago and I still love it.
Here is the slide show. Click through to the Zoo Zoom photo gallery to see the pictures bigger.