I used to love photography. I took classes, knew my way around a darkroom, and hauled an unwieldy camera bag on every vacation. Somewhere along the way though, I let my interest slide. When it came time to upgrade to digital, I went with a high end point and shoot to lighten the load on trips. While I've taken some good pictures, I've been itching lately for results my trusty p&s can't deliver. The inconvenience of an SLR once again seemed like a fair trade for the images it could produce.
So I began my least favorite part of the whole endeavor: the research. I read about cameras and looked at sample images until my head spun. As is always the case in life, no one option offered everything that I wanted. Trade-offs would have to be made. Did I want image stabilization in the lens or the camera body? Prime lenses or zoom? Did I need more megapixels? What about video capabilities? Were they worth a shorter battery life?
This afternoon, I (finally) made a decision. The Canon images consistently resonated with me, and the XSi offered the features that I cared most about. After shooting over 20 test shots in the store, the choice was clear, and I re-entered the world of "serious" photography. Judging from my first test shot (low light, hand-held), I chose well. I don't just mean the image. Even better than that was feeling the heft of the camera in my hand and hearing the old familiar click of the shutter. Some loves never die.