It's funny how you can get hooked on something. For my wife and me, we were just due for a camera upgrade, especially with an upcoming kid at the time. A 1.3MP digital-zoom only wasn't going to cut it. I buried my brain in all the technical aspects of a camera. "Why are there two max apertures? Sensor size? Crop factor? Depth of field?" When we finally purchased our Canon A570IS, I went nuts, especially with its macro capability.

I was never content with fully automatic mode after having realized its potential, so I learned the priority and manual modes. I learned more about exposure, composition, and lighting. Finally, here I am with my T1i, finding myself drawn to the night sky, wildlife, and landscapes.

I used to be "stuck" with the camera, and was never very excited to document vacations or family events when I was a teenager. Now, the camera is stuck to me, and I shoot with the intent of getting it right upon releasing the shutter...not out of technical perfection, but because I saw it. Sure, digital alterations can be fun projects, but I photograph because I want to be able to go back and recall what I had seen with my eyes, what I thought was beautiful, ugly, elegant, simple, and everything in between.

- Christian Mendoza