When i was around 18 yeas of age parents purchased for me a camera for Christmas. But like many things, it broke early in it’s life. At this age I was more interested in cars than any other hobby, so fixing the camera fell by the wayside. All my extra cash was spent fixing the bomb of a car i was handed down from my elder sister. I did not a bad job in the end, but after being smashed into so many times, i eventually gave up on the poor old car, and moved to the big smoke, where trams and trains were all I ever needed.

What kick started my current passion for photography was my new found love of travel. My mother in law purchased my wife (girlfriend at the time) the Nikon One Touch Zoom 90s AF film camera. My wife having technophobia, the taking of pictures became my domain. While in possession of this camera we visited Spain (Barcelona & Zarragosa), France (Paris), Italy (Venice), Scotland and finally a visit home to Australia (Melbourne). Out of all the film i exposed, only the trip home was lost. We used to develop our films via royal mail.

While back in Melbourne, i noticed my brother was taking photos with a Canon A80 compact. While always interested in acquiring a digital camera, they always seemed a little too expensive. Now they were a little over £200. Done, on my way back from OZ, I purchase the very same camera. This little compact was a little beauty. It was fully programmable and had a tilt out and swivel monitor. It went with me Iceland, Austria, Egypt, Belgium and Greece.

Wanting to move up in the world of photography, but scared to take the plunge into DSLR realms, i decided to purchase the Panasonic FZ30 bridge camera. Hailed for it’s image stabilization and huge quality Leica long zoom lens. But not for its noise, which could be a problem. Not a bad little camera. It is Rebecca’s chioce of camera for when we go away. Not good for low light as the maximum ISO is 800. The image stabilisation is very good, and for every day work on a trip, it was a great camera, and the battery would last forever. I used this camera in Czech Republic, Italy (Rome & Vieste), the Maldives & Poland. And Belgium once more.

I then had gained enough confidence to justify the purchase of a DSLR. I went for the Nikon D80. The main reason was that Nikon has the 18-200mm VR lens. For travelling purposes this is a great all round lens. I immediately fell in love with the camera. The images just jumped out at me. The freedom of the extra ISO and the power of using RAW was very liberating. Although the FZ-30 had the capability of using RAW, i never did use it. This baby was with me in Spain (La Palma & Madrid), Sri Lanka, to Belgium again and the USA.

So then the D300 comes out. And i give in. Main reason. I love hand held spontaneous on the move photography. The high quality images at higher ISO are a huge bonus in these instances. I also love the 100% viewfinder. It is a beauty. And although Nikon have just intorduced the full frame D700, i will not be upgrading this time. Not until the price of the D700 drops considerably anyhow. So far this camera has been with me to Hungary and France (Paris).

There you have it. Not as much as many, but enough to have experienced the spread of camera types of most Amatuer photographers.

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