Two years ago before our daughter’s wedding in Italy she asked me to take a picture of her maid-of-honor fixing her hair.
“Sure,” I replied and grabbed my old android TracFone and snapped a photo of the precious moment.
“Let me see,” she insisted.
I showed her the picture.
Her bride-to-be nose wrinkled with disdain. Assuredly she was anxious on her wedding day–who can blame her? but her next words became legend in this family: “What a sh*t phone! Can anyone else take a picture, please?”
Yes, I have a history of sh*t phones. You see, we can’t get proper cell phone coverage here in our neck of the woods. We’re incognito hidden from appropriate towers. Trying to hold a conversation here in our little house? Impossible. Total static, if connection even happens.
They’ve been text-messaging saviors, these sh*t phones, yes indeed. They transmit texts just fine. About ten years ago our teenage niece wanted to text her million friends all night long. We found her at 5 a.m. sound asleep in the corner chair–with her arm in the air clutching her phone, catching the only cell phone waves in the house. (I’ve regretted not taking her photo ever since.)
Let’s not be too hasty to dis the android phones, because sometimes it’s just a change of perspective, isn’t it? Here were the benefits: They were inexpensive. They worked just fine outside of our cloistered woods. You could use Google maps and discover unknown places, except they refused to speak Bluetooth through the car speakers and only chattered away from the phone speakers.
The latest of the sh*t phones has been dying a long painful death since the wedding photo debacle. It quit taking crisp and clear pictures six months ago. And suddenly refused to keep a battery charge for a daylong trip to Marquette 78 miles away.
I’ve been all talk and no action for two years waiting for the right moment to upgrade into the modern world.
And guess what? Last month was the right moment!
I decided to upgrade. No big service fees because, honestly, we don’t use it as a regular reliable phone and already pay for an established landline. TracFone advertised all sorts of phone deals and I found an IPhone SE for 199 bucks, yessiree! A modern chic little lassie! Add a couple hundred dollars for one year’s service and you can get unlimited talk and texts. Data is not free, so will have to learn how this works.
(I have hooked her up to wireless to see if she’ll eek out a phone conversation from our little house in the woods but that’s been a bit sketchy so far.)
It’s been a total hoot learning how to use this new phone! OK, I am kinda lying, because it’s been both a hoot and a pain in the a**. It’s been so fun to have a phone that knows how to take photos. It’s SO fun! And the pictures ain’t half bad, are they?
The phone actually knows how to focus, sweet dear. It can take pictures INSIDE and knows how to address proper lighting.
For a point-and-shoot gal like myself it’s perfect.
I like taking pictures to capture feelings and the spirit-being of the world. Like the picture of the fungus–it FEELS like the circle of life, doesn’t it?
The white thistle pic at the beginning FEELS like a bursting-open in the center of the solar plexus.
The cedar root picture FEELS like the body is stretching out green and mossy into infinity.
(OK, OK, sometimes it’s also fun to take photos of beauty or actual objects, yes it is.)
I may not be taking the heavy old Canon Rebel “big girl” camera–often used for photos on this blog–out much in the near future. This lassie is just too light and easy to carry around for walks in the woods or out on the road.
The sh*t phone is history.
Yay for the new phone! Beautiful pix, I always love seeing them, sh*t phone or otherwise. Daughters can be so cruel! ❤️
Yep, daughters can be cruel and so can mamas at times. Glad you liked the pics! That means a lot, coming from your artistic eye.
Welcome to the new wonder! I don’t even dare to be around one of those. Too temperamental I believe. You brave m\woman you! ( and the photos are awesome.)
Those temperamental lassies, lol! You should have seen me this morning trying to figure out how to resize the photos. A lesson in patience as my stomach clenched with not-knowing-how-to-do-it. Remembering how it takes time to learn new skills and being patient with the one who doesn’t know how to do things.
Thanks for the chuckle! So happy you’ve embraced a non sh*t phone ❣️
Val, now I am chuckling out loud. Thank YOU!
GOOD for you, Kathy!! Yes, I agree: maybe real photographers need a fancy ole camera, but some of these new phones are so good at capturing what you need and when you need it that they can’t be beat! As evidenced, of course, by your photos here. Just look at that fungus — the detail, the clarity! Congrats on getting such a fun new “toy”!
Debbie, I suppose real photographers know how to create that clarity by spinning dials and buttons and doing all sorts of gyrations. But WOW, to think a phone can do this well! I am duly impressed. And am glad you resonate.
I completely agree – these little phones do just fine for my picture taking, and are so much easier to carry around. Besides which, rarely am I without it, because, you know, I’m old and what if I fall and can’t get up? Your pictures are lovely. Welcome to this world.
Carol, now that’s a consideration. Our phones can be lifelines to 911 (except maybe in our little house, hmmm…) AND they count steps and miles AND you can take notes and remember odd bits & pieces about people. Thank you!
A new phone has so much to learn. But it IS really cool that they take such great photos these days! I have gone to DC with nothing but my phone and been very happy. It does better in low light than my big camera does (mostly because I don’t do the settings right on the big camera). HOWEVER, I have not figured out how to download the pictures other than posting them to FB. So I do that and then I copy them into a file on my laptop. I KNOW there has to be a better way to do it! Your photos are beautiful.
Well, Dawn, you’ve stated it very well. What a learning curve! The issue about downloading (and resizing) the photos took almost two hours to try & figure out a couple of days ago, and I’m still not sure it’s resolved. But will keep on tinkering! You have been one person who has really learned to use your big camera…and I congratulate you on that.
I like your upgrade and yes the pics are nice But- a DSLR still takes the best photos- hands down. I have a $600 android Samsung and cell and it is a pain in the ass -if I may be so frank.I sitll have not figured how to use it to its full advantage. My Canon 60 D is went more or less kaput after 10 years of usage. I want another canon but have been too cheap to get one since I always seem to have things that in the house or outdoors go belly up and have to be replaced.
You are probably right about the DSLR taking the best pics. You have probably learned how to use the settings to best advantage. My husband certainly does it better than me. Let me know if you decide on buying a new one, and what model you get.
Yes, I will let you know.
Congratulations, Kathy! The pictures you captured are downright amazing! The fungus does indeed bring to mind the circle of life, and the first hint of autumn, the wheel of the year. I found that my new Android cell phone takes better pictures inside but I’m still married to my Canon PowerShot for the great outdoors.
Barbara, is your Canon PowerShot a big camera or a point and shoot? I have had two Canons, one of both varieties. Thank you for enjoying the photos here. Especially glad you liked the fungus circle of life.
I had no idea there were issues with photos for you using the sh*t phone. Congrats on the new one, and for the beautiful pix, Beautiful you.
Hey, thank you, Susan Dee. Yes, I mostly used the Canon for taking pictures because the old sh*t phone has misbehaved so badly. However, I don’t like carrying around the big camera that much these days (it feels distracting) so it’s great to have this option. Talk to you manana!
Ah, the new phone conundrum. I am hanging on to my 5-year-old Android even as Norm upgraded his a year ago. I have had a smart phone since 2008, the only person I knew with an iPhone back in the day. What bothers me is the constant intrusion. What delights me is the great photos and videos. (Remember the giant VHS camcorders?)
You have done it smartly, I think. You’ve waited until a new phone was necessary; you got a good deal; and you can take great photos without fanfare. I want to be just like you!! XOXO
Awww, Stacy, thank you! It sounds like you and me are similar in waiting to update our phones when they’re actually ready to die–not just because. I like how you listed both the pros and cons of the little guys. They can be such intrusive pains! And give so much pleasure too. Hugs! xoxo
Well done on the new phone! It is about time! These photos are nice. I particularly liked the first hint of fall. Here, it is not just hints. Haha!
About time indeed! The old camera made pictures look misty and foggy. Which was nice–if you wanted a misty and foggy ambiance, lol. Glad you liked the fall picture! And it sounds like you are further along in Germany than we are here.
Welcome to the Apple world. Excellent photos.
Thank you, Sarah! I have had SOME experience with Apple, because I purchased an iPad a few years ago. That’s why it felt like the iPhone was the way to go.
There is so much about this post I could have written (bad cell phone coverage, having a land line, texts working when all else fails). But here’s the main thing: I got rid of my sh*t phone this year, too, and have a new one! Isn’t it exciting? I also agree with you about the heavier vs. lighter cameras. I take the Canon out less and less often lately.
I love your images, the feel of them. That bark IS magic and because I’m still in the midst of the Mandala Magic course (art journaling), the fungi mandala really spoke to me. Nature makes beautiful mandalas.
How exciting, Robin! We’ve both joined the new phone/camera world this year! And, yes, nature’s mandalas are so impressive. The small mirroring the large and the large mirroring the small. I am not surprised you resonate with the feel of images. ❤
My iPhone 6, we have discovered, has a bloated battery problem but the case keeps it together and it works good enough for me – same challenges you have with remote rural access issues. AT&T talked my husband into an Android Galaxy A12 but it has never shown up. Paying for it with a reduced data plan was going to come out to about the same monthly cost. I got a way lower bill recently but still have received no phone – so far. I really like my iPhone (inherited almost brand new when my mom died back in Sept 2015) but I know its condition is compromised. I still don’t know if the new phone is coming but I do still have a usable one for the time being – only use it once a week when I go out grocery shopping – sometimes take local photos with it.
Hi Deb–yep, it sounds like we both have experienced the unreliability of remote access services. Hope your new phone finds its way to your little house in the woods sooner than later. At least before the old reliable phone makes its demise. It sounds like it’s been a good little fella for you.