The rumors you have heard are true, I do indeed have photography lights. eeeeeee! sdfkjhdfk (these are my sounds of excitement).
I have wanted photography lights for some time now, well since I took my studio light class in 2007. Any time I want to take photographs I use natural light, which is great because that is what I usually prefer. Though there have been times in the past where I have been asked to take portraits for one reason or another. I either have to take them outside (which can be less than ideal if it is cold, raining, or too overcast...etc) or I must take them inside (unless it is well lit by windows or artificial light, you have motion blur in addition to unflattering shadows...etc). Also note, I dislike using my camera's flash because it bleaches lighter fabrics and skin tones and can feel too stark if you are wanting a softer feel. Basically in regards to photography, it is all about the light.
My hopes of owning photography lights were dashed when I realized just how expensive they are. Prices range from $100-$500 for a single light (and those are not considered professional grade). Needless to say, I have been resigned to the thought of making due with natural light only.
This past summer I had to repair or replace 9 parts on 9 separate occasions on my car. One evening I was on my way to my grandparents' home. While stopped at a traffic light I glanced over to the man in the car next to me and he had this very strange expression in his face and was staring at something. I followed his gaze over and realized he was looking at smoke that was billowing out of the hood of my car. I of course freaked out and tried to call anyone who could help me but to no avail. Finally I had remembered my friend Drew had some experience with cars. I called him up but he was on his way to class and talked me into not driving my car until he could look at it after his class. (All of this has a point, stay with me.) Since I was so close to my grandparents' home I drove the rest of the way there.
I arrived at my grandparents' home around 4pm, I could not drive my car until Drew was out of class, his class ended somewhere between 8:30-9ish (it was a test day). I had a few hours to kill so we ate dinner and talked and everything and I had realized my grandparents hadn't seen my pictures of Haiti (from the June trip). So I took out my computer and walked them through all of my photography. I then moved on to all of my photo albums on my computer. My grandpa who is a bit hard of hearing then asked, "whose pictures were those?" I told him they were mine, and he was surprised. He thought he was looking at a professional's work (his words not mine, I'm not trying to toot my own horn). He asked my why I wasn't doing this professionally and I told him of my lights dilemma.
The day after the car radiator saga, I was sitting at work and was visited by my grandparents. My grandpa handed me a tin box. I opened it up and realized there were bills and several rolls of quarters, dimes, nickels and pennies. Along with the money was a note written in my grandpa's distinct handwriting that read " IOU $--- by 12/31/09 to the total amount of $250" Oh and he signed it at the bottom of the note. I looked up and asked him what it was for. He said it was to go towards my lights and that he also wanted the [empty] tin box back (which I thought was cute).
Each time I visited him after that day he would give me another installment payment with yet another signed receipt included.
(Note: Some history you might want to know, I know my family has always been very supportive of everything I do. Though some times there is some apprehension because they worry that I won't be able to support myself. It had been said by some family members that photography is a good hobby and that is all I should see it as. So my grandpa's financial support I feel is also like saying "I believe in what you are trying to do." Which feels awesome.)
Today I went to the bank and had all the coins turned to bills. I went over to the Photo Supply store and bought 2 lights that came with stands, umbrella diffusers, bulbs and a carrying case.
I am sure it is going to take some time to get used to them, but I am excited to get acquainted with my lights! I am going to name them as well.
I know many people who name inanimate objects like cars but I have never really named my car. I think I connect better with my computer and camera things. My camera's name is Poseidon. I am thinking I am going to name my lights Romulus and Remus. In writing this I have realized I have never named my computer. So if you have read this far in my post, what do you think I should name my computer? ( I realize there is somewhat of an ancient Greek/ Rome theme with the names though my computer doesn't need to go along with the theme).
Drum roll please...