I've been looking at getting back into photography, especially as I used to combine that with models and liked nothing more than setting up some old Airfix kits and clicking away with a macro lens fitted. However my old 35mm film camera is now 35 years old and I thought that now was the time to look at going digital.

The main hurdle was cost. Most of the entry level Digital SLR camera outfits were around £500. I then walked into a local camera shop to get a 1GB SD memory card and noticed that they were offering an Olympus E500 with lens, battery and charger + 2 year warranty for just £239. I was sold, and came away with a new toy (yes another one !)

For a budget camera the results have been really fantastic. I'm still experimenting with the manual settings, but even leaving everything in auto mode the results are sharp, colour balance good and contrast well balanced. The good thing about being digital is that if you do mess up you don't have to worry about the expense as you do with film, and unlike film, can get 1000 JPG images on a 2GB CF card !

I also have a good mentor - my manager at work is seriously into photography and thus helps out when I need to bounce an idea off someone. I've included some small thumbnail images below, these are straight from the camera and only been reduced in size for the web site

The left image was taken one morning in January, just before sun-rise. The image on the right was taken a few nights later. Both using the standard lens with no filters and set to auto everything !.