family photos in boise
How to pick the best camera for you
April 5, 2021

We just got home from the emergency room. We are fine. Unfortunately, my pocketbook is not, but that is a story for another time. I was wishing I had thought to bring my camera. Hindsight, I know…but that got me thinking of something else because my mind will often veer into weird directions. (Whose doesn’t?)

It’s coming. We all know it. Whether you celebrate Christmas or not, it seems to be a great time of year to look out for these amazing deals and those awesome discounts on the things we want. You may be buying for you or you may be buying for someone else, but you know there is always room for a little bit of splurging. Well, if you’re me anyway. 

Two dogs standing on a bed and looking out a window

People always ask me what kind of camera I shoot with and what I would recommend for others. Well, instead of fielding those questions all year long, I decided to go ahead and write about it. There are so many choices out there. But what camera is best for you and your specific needs? Let’s explore some of them.

First of all, you may have heard (and you may have not) that there is a war going on. Yes, a war. A war on the best camera brand out there and a war on what would be the best for a beginning photographer or for an experienced one. And the coolest thing about that war is that you really don’t need to pay attention to all the hype. Because what I’m going to tell you today will ease your mind and help you choose what is right for you.

First things first. You have to decide what you want to use the camera for. Are you planning on using it to take beautiful pictures of the nice scenery in your neighborhood? Are you planning on using it to take pictures of the wildlife that you see in your backyard? Do you plan to take pictures of loved ones on the holidays or just at family gatherings? There are so many reasons to own a camera and to pick the best one for you, you have to know what it is you plan to use that camera for.

Mom kneeling down beside daughter as she helps her tie her shoe. Beautiful foothills view behind her

Point and Shoot:

Point and shoot cameras are typically very small in size. As a matter of fact, as time has gone on and technology has gotten better, these cameras are extremely lightweight and very small, sometimes fitting in the palm of your hand. It must be said, too, that these cameras are usually very efficient. They can do miraculous things if you are looking for a camera that can shoot candid photos of friends and the occasional scene outdoors. Some would also venture to say that these types of cameras really don’t do that much differently than a typical phone camera. But depending on your phone, this statement may ring truer with some phones more than others. There are various point-and-shoot cameras on the market. Some of them are listed here. What you want to look for is a camera that feels good in your hand and has accessible easy controls. These controls will all be automatic, which means the camera will have all the ability to change the look of the photo based on what it is seeing. However, because cameras do not have brains, there are just some things these types of cameras can’t do that well. It is best when looking for one of these cameras that you make sure it has automatic settings that make sense to you and that you think you may use. Listed here are just some of the cameras available to you. It’s important to check prices as well as descriptions to see what will be right for you.


Canon PowerShot G9 X Mark II

Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 IS

Canon PowerShot SX620

Kodak FZ53-BL

Beginner DSLR:

Now, if you think you are up for a little bit more of a challenge, or you think that you want a better quality photo than what the point-and-shoot camera has to offer, look no further. These cameras allow you to not only be able to change the way your image is once taken, but they will also afford you a much nice photo quality. These cameras also have the ability to just set the camera to auto and let her go, but they also will allow you to change certain aspects of the settings to alter the look of the photo. They allow your brain to do more work rather than the camera’s brain doing the work for you. I highly recommend that whenever possible, holding these cameras in your hands before purchasing. All cameras feel different on your hands and have the buttons to change setting in different places. You want to make sure you will be comfortable using it before you buy it. Also, looking for a camera of this magnitude will most likely afford you a rechargeable battery rather than the kind you have replace (such as in the point and shoot cameras above). While the benefits of these cameras include having more functions and capabilities, they also have some drawbacks. If and when you decide to move on to a higher camera, you will notice some key differences. The camera has what is called “cropped sensors” which just means that not all of what you see in the viewfinder will show up on the picture itself. The edges will be cropped off. And lastly, the controls that help change your photo and make it your own, will usually not be as accessible as some of the better cameras. And it should go without saying that the better the camera, the higher quality the image when printing. Here are just some of the entry-level DSLR cameras to include reviews. Another brand not listed here that you may want to consider is Sony.

Nikon D3500

Nikon D3400

Canon EOS Rebel T7i / EOS 800D

Canon EOS Rebel T6i / EOS 750D

Nikon D5600

Does this seem like a lot of choices? The thing with cameras is that you want to be able to get what you pay for. Pay for too much and you may regret it. Pay for too little and you may regret it. That’s why understanding what you want and what you need out of a camera is so important. If at any time you have questions about a certain camera model or you need just plain advice more than this article provides, please contact me. I am here for you!

But what happens if you get your camera and you aren’t sure how to use it? You know you want to learn but the camera manual is confusing and just not detailed enough? Check out, my photo classes!

Much love,


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