Innocently, Cheeky Koko asks, “Mama, when you were a kid, did your world appear only in Black and White?”
“What? No, why do you ask this?” I asked.
“I was just looking at photos from grandpa, grandma’s times and photos from your time and they were all black and white, so I thought may be your world came in that colours only!” My preteen scientist thought so logically.
“Well, those days cameras were bulky, less technology-driven and more skills-driven instead, and the photos could only be processed in black and white hence grandpa and grandma and even your great grandpa and great grandma had photos that are in black and white only. But Excusez-moi, little man, here’s the correction: your mom though seems to be born at dinosaur age at times but really I am from the 70s era, where those great songs like YMCA and the discos were in their heydays, so my childhood photos already came in faintish colours of yellow and brown, k? Not black and white.” I said defensively.
“And certainly the world since the time God first created it had appeared in its full spectrum of colours. I can imagine Adam and Eve saw it a little more blue than you, a little more green and perhaps the sun came in a nicer shade of crimson red because they didn’t have pollution like what we have now,” I continued.
“OK, just my imagination. Got it, Mom!” Short and succinct is his middle name these days.
At times like these, I know why preteens and teens can drive parents up their wall by their seemingly curious child-like nature which turns into a cold, shut-the-world-out machine at the very next second. May be he’s a little grown up now — not a small boy anymore but certainly not yet a youth. I just have to learn to release him to the teenage-hood, ready or not, steadily.
Perhaps I am not ready yet. Here’s my first baby who ushered me into motherhood 12 years ago, whose entire birth, his first words, first smile, first turn, first step, first haircut and first mischief got Daddy Joe and I fascinated long into the nights as we learned to be the best first-time parents ever. I can still remember how everything that he was doing even as small as building his first sand castle was worth photo-taking with our first compact camera loaded with a film roll.
The photos that came from the first generation compact camera were at times blurred, at times too white because of the flash light, too dark because we didn’t use the flashlight, too full of flaws because of the background — all of which were largely because digital cameras were not invented until a few years later.
Digital camera got us hooked initially because we could take and retake precious moments to our heart’s content but it only did just that – point and shoot. Sometimes the moments were right but the technology and the lack of any photo-taking skill produced photo quality that just came out fairly plain.
We have since owned two digital cameras as we expanded our family members but none could come close to the smartness of Panasonic LUMIX DMC-GM1K which I recently was invited to put to test as a mother because it targets young fashionable females and especially young mothers (believe it or not, I still qualify, ok? LOL!) with its light weight, compact size (small as an iphone!) and fashionably stylish package. Yet within this lovable compact camera-meets-SLR-function package, this wondrous digital camera is jammed pack with mother-friendly features that were once achievable if only one was armed with a SLR camera and canggih-manggih (high tech) lenses.
Because we don’t have a SLR camera, I sometimes use a phone app such as PicsArt to give artistic touches to the quick photos I take of the happiest little kids. No doubt these apps made me feel almost like a semi-professional photographer because of their ability to capture the surrounding ambience and the moment in time almost quite fine, somehow the photos are still not rich in their detailing and it doesn’t give us the satisfaction that comes from using a real camera to take photos, especially one that gives you the full control like the SLR, minus the required expenses, bulkiness and technical know-how.
For my first attempt with Lumix GM1, this happiest little family here has taken a day trip to Melaka, one of Malaysia’s oldest port cities with a trading history dating back to the 15th century and a charming mix of Dutch, Portugese and British colonial heritage that makes it a colourful multicultural town. From its unique Baba Nyonya heritage as well as its European architectural influences such as the must-visit A Famosa forts and the new retro vibes that are bursting through its touristic cafes and famous streets, they become the perfect backdrop for my experiment with my new gadget.
I mostly capture the stories of the lovely city by using a very retro built-in filter that comes with the camera. All in, there are 22 filters one can easily switch to at the touch-screen panel to get creative with. There are mothers-approved filters such as child portrait, clear portrait, soft portrait, and cool landscape and skyline filters such as romantic sunset, cool sunset, night landscape, glistening landscape and etc, how not to be feel what Picasso feels when one is able to hold the power to be creative at her fingertips? 🙂
Overall the camera is light but packed loads with smart features that make capturing these fleeting moments a mom sees such as that cute as a button smile in a photo a supremely easy task. No more expensive family portraits at a studio when everything seems staged. A child’s most natural expression is captured beautifully and naturally with the help of the many fool-proof features.
My only regret? If only this was invented 12 years back then perhaps I could hold onto sweet memories of my first baby Cheeky Koko and second baby Pumpkin Mei-Mei that much more longer through vibrant and crisp clear photos produced by the Lumix GM1.
Baby B is just a very lucky baby to be born in this technology age – there is so much more that I can preserve his cuteness in the photos than I could with his older brother and sister, anytime and anywhere. If only time could turn back for me to do what I wanted to do all along.
But I am guessing I could still snap the two preteens as much as I want, even when they are trying to cover up their faces and do funny shots like these!
Follow us as we learn to take full control of Lumix GM1 to capture the beauty of another iconic city of Malaysia, coming up soon!