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"Push Present" | Camera

I've reached out to a few of my friends that have already made this leap, years ago... And while I was thinking about it, I thought that I might as well post something here in hopes of you guys helping me too.

Years ago, when film cameras were still hot, I asked for a camera for a Christmas gift from my husband and got it! It was a shock of a lifetime, because I really didn't know what I was going to do with it, just knew that I was always picture happy and this was going to help me accomplish taking "better" pictures.

Well, within about 2 years of having that Canon Rebel film camera, digital was hot-to-trot and film was so old school, so we upgraded.  We didn't jump up in product really, we just got a really nice Nikon pocket size digital that lasted about 3 years before we had to replace that too.

Now, with Sprout on the horizon, we're thinking more and more about what our next camera might be like.

I'm not one to love the idea of a "push present", but it is a sweet idea.  We've talked about what that might be and what I might be interested in it being and my only solution was that I wanted it to be something practical yet fun and useful for the both of us.  I'm not a huge jewelry fan.  I wear my wedding band, engagement ring, diamond stud earrings, Silpada ball earrings and my Lindy Star sapphire ring (that my mom gave me for HS graduation) everyday.  I don't need or want anything else because then it means that I have to eliminate what I'm already comfortable with.  I don't need or want a fancy hand bag.  I love and admire others but I'm perfectly happy with the ones that I have and usually don't like to buy anything that is full price, because it's just not worth it.  Vera Bradley is my love and I get her bags for cheap at the warehouse sale every year.

Basically, what it boils down to is that if I were to get a "push present", I would like it to be useful and a nice new digital SLR seems to fit that mold perfectly.

Our main concern is that we don't know where to start with researching this other than ask those that have something similar and go from there!

So, for those that are a little more camera savvy, do you have any recommendations for a DSLR for a beginner?  When you picked yours, why did you pick that one over another?

Thank you in advance.


I got my first DLSR when my first daughter was born and I still use it daily. It's an Olympus. After having it and using it for 3+ years, it takes great pictures. It was a good camera to learn on and I am now looking to upgrade, someday to a Canon or Nikon. I know people who use both. I was once told by a photograper friend, spend the money on the lenses, they make the difference in picture quality. Now how true that is... I don't know. But my Olympus has been great to learn on and I have two different lenses. Happy searching!
Lydia said…
Email me Jill,I'll give you more advice than you know what to do with, my photo degree comes in handy every once in awhile lol!
Katie said…
My hubby got me a DSLR for a "push present" in 2009. LOVE IT. I'm the same, I'm not a big jewelry person, I don't wear flashy clothes, but I knew that a decent camera would be useful, especially documenting my daughter's life....the best part about it is that it's so much faster than a point & shoot! We had only had a few digital point & shoots, and so when we decided to go with a DSLR, we went with Canon, since we had the best experience with our Canon point & shoot. Plus, I knew how to work my way around with the settings on a Canon, so it was easier for me to get used to. Trust me, it is one of the best things to have - I've had mine for 15 months and I've probably taken around 10,000 pictures what if 9,500 are crappy - I'm still playing with the settings!
Wendy said…
I didn't even know what a push present was! Man, I missed out! ;)

I highly, highly recommend a DSLR. And also an external harddrive to store all of the photos, because you'd hate to lose them, and the DSLR's are huge files because the resolution is so high. All of our photos of our kids are digital and they're all on our external drive.

I have a Canon Rebel and I LOVE it. It's easy to use and there's more features I could learn on there if I took the time, but for basic point and shoot it's great. You can shoot in different modes, which I love, especially for the kids. There's black and white, which is great, and also a "portrait" setting which focuses on the main subject and blurs the background a bit - I use that a lot for taking pictures of the girls.
Mandy said…
I have a Canon T1I and I really like it. At the time, it was on the higher end of amateur DSLRs for Canon. Now there are fancier ones, but they still sell this one.

I like everything on it except its video quality. That it does video is one of the reasons we got it, but it's a disappointment in that regard. You can hear the lens clicking as it refocuses if your subject moves, and what video doesn't have a moving subject? Kinda dumb.

I hear the T2I fixes this problem, so that's good. I'll probably just end up getting a Flip at some point for video.
Anonymous said…
I just got the Nikon 3100 and love it. When I was researching cameras I looked at both Nikon and cannon and after reading reviews the Nikon 3100 out shot high end Nikon and the cannon at the same price range. The plus to the 3100 is that it also takes HD video! So I only have to have one piece of equipment and not a video camera and digital with me.
I'm also a first time commenter!
Sassytimes said…
I have a Canon Rebel and love it. I've always used Canon, so I stuck with what I knew and loved. I bought it when S was 6 months old and one of the best 'big' purchases I've made. The photo quality between that and my point and shoot is unreal. I still use my point and shoot when traveling or out and about, but it's so awesome to have a DSLR; especially for shooting kids and capturing special moments.
Cheryl E. said…
I think that is a perfect push present. I was thinking of doing the same and now we regret not getting one because we feel like we are missing out on our little guys life.
Sarah said…
I'm a big, big fan of Nikon, but honestly I've never really used anything else. I've had my Nikon SLR for 3+ years and it's easy, great pictures. I couldn't live without it.

You will LOVE an SLR. It's faster, it's more flexible...BUT, it's bulky. It's not something you can just whip out of your purse and grab a quick shot of that adorable grin at the grocery store. SO, I would also advise you have a nice point and shoot to supplement your SLR - something you can keep in your purse or your diaper bag for those impromptu photo ops!
Allison said…
I think it's perfect! We bought ours a few months before DD was born (I wanted a chance to practice and also to look for a good deal) and I LOVE it. I can't imagine going back to a point & shoot now. I have the Canon Rebel XS and think it's great. You can still use automatic to take pics and not really think about things, but you can also set everything you could ever want.

The only downside to getting an SLR is that next you'll want the fabulous lenses. The one I keep on my camera is really pretty inexpensive compared to other lenses--it's a portrait lens and is 50mm f/1.8. You can get it on Amazon for about $100.
Josey said…
I LOVE my Canon Rebel T2i.

Email me if you want more details about how to choose and I can forward you the email my Mom sent me (she's a photographer).

It has HD video, super fast shutter speed, wide range of ISO, etc... great camera.
Anonymous said…
I just got the Nikon D3100 and it is awesome! perfect for a beginner and it also shoots video and takes outstanding pictures while it is very easy ti use, I highly recommend it!
Kristen said…
Definetly the Canon T2i and splurge and get the nifty fifty as well (50mm 1.8 for just about 100 bucks) - it's a great beginner portrait lens and will give you the great bokeh (blurry background). Takes amazing HD video as well. I got a 7D for my push present - REALLY wanted the T2i to have a slightly smaller body to carry around but decided it was smarter to get a body that could double as a backup for my business but rented the T2i for a few days and absolutely loved it - I started out with the XTi.
Jessica R said…
This is the website you want:

This guy really knows his stuff. I used his website when I was looking for a DSLR - ended up with a Nikon and love it. Have fun!!

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