Best Cameras For Moms And Beginning Photographers

Disclaimer: I’m not a professional photographer. What follows is simply based on personal research and opinion designed to help other mothers and beginning photographers. This post contains affiliate links which help to support this blog at no extra cost to you. 

best-camera-for-moms

 

Like many parents out there, I began taking photos of my kids when they were young. I had a Canon point-and-shoot at the time, and while it was considered to be a great option I craved more from my photos. Using my point-and-shoot camera in auto mode produced mediocre photos at best– and I knew I needed to step up my game and learn photography.

Anyone can learn photography in the comfort of one’s own home with enough time, dedication and practice. I’m not a professional and used to take a lot of my photos by trial-and-error rather than technicality. I know that many mothers out there take photos like I did, without professional knowledge but through lots of practice and online tutorials. Today I’m much more experienced and knowledgeable about using a DSLR, especially after taking a one-on-one course with my blogger + photographer friend Diana Elizabeth. I highly recommend her coaching if you’d like to learn how to use your camera better.

If you’re a mother who wants to take better photos of her kids or a beginning photographer wanting to invest in a new camera, this post is for you. No technical jargon here, simply real life tips from one mother to another.

1. Best point-and-shoot cameras

Point-and-shoot cameras are known for its compact size and easy-to-use features. Most use auto focusing and have built in flash. The zoom lens is attached to the camera and is versatile with functions like built-in video, auto and manual controls.

If you want to buy a point-and-shoot camera I’d suggest buying a higher quality one, because lower grade point-and-shoots may not be that much better than our smart phones. Therefore, having a cheap point-and-shoot may be redundant.

If you like the idea of having a point-and-shoot camera for ease-of-use, convenience and portability, I would recommend Sony or Canon. The colors are crisp and clear and manuals are fairly easy to use. I’ve used both brands and was happy with both. Both have been on the market for many years and quality, durability and function have been tested by many users over time. The photo quality won’t be like ones from a DSLR or mirrorless, but better than what your smartphone can take.

Here are sample photos from a point-and-shoot in different lighting situations. I used auto mode for all three, meaning I had the camera do all the thinking for me.

best-camera-for-moms

As you can see, photos are good quality but not superb. The details are still better than using a smartphone. These photos were taken nearly ten years ago and I’m certain latest point-and-cameras take much better photos.

Check out these beautiful photos taken by my friend and photographer Diana Elizabeth with a point-and-shoot camera. She used Canon PowerShot G7  for these photos.

diana-elizabeth-3


2. Best DSLR for moms and beginner photographers

Canon entry level DSLR ($500+)

For moms and beginning photographers, I’d recommend the Canon Rebel T6.  This is a great option for anyone who wants to learn how to shoot with a DSLR without spending too much money. This is an entry level DSLR that is more compact than the professional ones but still take excellent photos. You can begin using it with the kit lens and invest in another lens or two as you get more familiar with the camera.

If I were to invest in two lenses, I would choose one zoom lens and one prime lens. Zoom lenses zoom in and out of course, and prime lenses only have one focal length. Zoom lenses are a must for moms, because kids move around a lot and you may miss a lot of shots without the zoom feature. However, I personally prefer the prime lens because the photo quality is usually better. You also get the nice bokeh (blurred background) effect more easily with a prime lens.

For an affordable zoom lens, I’d recommend the Canon EF-S 18-55mm IS STM. For a great prime lens, go for the Canon EF 50mm f/1.4 USM, which is great for kids’ portraits. I also have the Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM which is nice for portraits but better for headshots or other tighter photos. Between the two, the 50mm is more versatile.

Here are some photos I took with the Canon rebel series with the 18-55 lens.

best-dslr-for-moms-canon-6d-sample

Canon mid-level DSLR ($1500+)

If you want to invest a little more for a DSLR, Canon EOS 6D is another great choice. Once I got familiar with the entry level rebel series, I invested in the mid-level Canon 6D (used to be 7D). I invested in a nicer zoom lens for this camera Canon EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS, which improved my photos. I spent another 2-3 years using this set up without buying another lens.

Here are some photos I took in 2011 with this camera.

best-camera-for-moms-dslr-sample-images

Today I use a Canon EOS 5D Mark III with Canon EF 35mm f/1.4L for my blog work but don’t think this is necessary for anyone who isn’t using their photos for work purposes.

Pros of DSLR

  • Excellent photos
  • Interchangeable lens
  • Tons of options and functions such as shooting in manual mode and getting RAW images
  • Longer lasting battery
  • Stronger, more durable body
  • Great quality video

Cons of DSLR

  • Cost: expensive body and lenses
  • Can get heavy and bulky
  • You need more than one lens


3. Best Mirrorless Camera

I recently bought a Fujifilm XT-10 and love it. It’s much more compact than my DSLR and still takes great photos. The Fuji mirrorless is my go-to camera and the only one I use when I’m traveling or spending time with my family. I find the DSLR too big for personal and travel use and would recommend other mothers to consider this option as well.

I’m still learning to use my Fuji X-T10. This is the more affordable version of the X-series, the better ones being Fujifilm X100T and Fujifilm X-T2. The X100T has a stronger weather-sealed body but I opted against it mainly due to price. These cameras have interchangeable lens which makes photography more versatile similar to a DSLR.

What I love most about the Fuji X-T10 is its portability. It’s much smaller and easier to carry around as a busy mom. I love the look that reminds me of a vintage film camera. I also love the colors of the photos and the way the shutter sounds. To me it’s just a really sexy and fun camera. I also love its simulation modes that alter the colors so the photos look more film-like. These photos are taken in “classic chrome mode.” I love this less saturated, vintage film look.

gratutide-cafe-san-diego

Cafe Gratitude, San Diego

best-mirrorless-camera-for-mom

Anaheim Packing House, Anaheim CA

After using a DSLR for many years, learning this Fuji mirrorless is new and fun. I’ll post a more detailed review of this camera in the future.


Pros of mirrorless

  • Portability- much lighter and smaller
  • Excellent photos
  • Interchangeable lens
  • Tons of options and functions such as shooting in manual mode and getting RAW images

Cons of mirrorless

  • Body and lenses can get expensive
  • Shorter battery life
  • You need more than one lens (unless you’re buying single lens mirrorless)
  • Videos are not as great as a DSLR

As you can see, the three different types of camera offer different pros and cons. Therefore, it’s important to weigh out the options and choose a type that works best for your family and budget.

So what is the best camera for moms?

There are pros and cons to each type of camera so this is hard to say. It really depends on individual user’s needs and goals. However if I had to choose just one camera, I would choose the mirrorless because it offers the perfect balance between a DSLR and point-and-shoot.

Mirrorless cameras are more compact but takes amazing photos that are DSLR quality. Similar to a DSLR, you can experiment with various lenses as your photography improves. I have a full frame canon DSLR that I love, but it’s too bulky that I end up using my iphone most of the time. Also, the cost of body and lenses is too high for the average photographer.

There are some cons to a mirrorless camera compared to a DSLR, one being shorter battery life. For me this isn’t the biggest problem because I simply have to carry extra batteries if I’m on a longer day trip. You should think about which is more important- size or battery life- but for me as a busy mom, portability is more valuable.

My photographer and blogger friend Diana Elizabeth put together a very informative post about choosing the perfect mirrorless camera. Be sure to check it out if you’d like to know more about buying a mirrorless camera.

If you liked this post, please pin the image below. It helps more mothers find this post and supports this blog. Thank you! 

best-camera-for-moms-pinterest-2

best-camera-for-moms-pinterest

Not sure if you’re ready to invest in new equipment? Why don’t you try renting it first?

Canon Beginner Kids PackageRent the Canon EOS 5Ds Digital SLR

Angela
Share:

42 thoughts on “Best Cameras For Moms And Beginning Photographers

  1. Allison

    I’ve got a DSLR that I wish I used more often but don’t take it out because a) the kids always want to “play” with it and b) it’s just a hassle to carry around along with diaper bags, strollers, etc. I may have to check out those mirrorless cameras! That sounds right up my alley!

    Reply
  2. Krysten

    I love my Canon SL1 so much, it’s the bottom midrange cameras and it keeps up with me. I have a sigma 35 1.4, mostly because it makes food look heavenly! This is a great list!

    Reply
  3. Tamara Goyette

    Sadly I have to greatly disagree about getting a mirrorless. After doing all our research my husband opted against it very quickly. The biggest factor being battery life. There’s a few other reasons too. I would opt for a DSLR instead.

    Reply
    1. Angela | Mommy Diary Post author

      Ah- yes, I did hear the same thing about battery life. I actually use two batteries because of that. But I still love the portability and function of mirrorless cameras. What other reasons make you prefer the DSLR? Thanks for your input!

      Reply
  4. Silvia

    I’m dying for a mirrorless camera! They are so much easier to pack whenever you travel and I’m definitely going to need one soon! Thanks for reviewing these!

    Reply
  5. Hanna

    Love these tips! Canon is our families GO TO brand for cameras! Were always impressed with each new camera we get from them!

    Reply
  6. Kate A

    I have a T3i that I’ve been using, and am fairly happy with it, but would love to upgrade as well as check out a mirrorless option. Thanks for such great information.

    Reply
  7. Lindsay

    this was really informative! I have the Canon 6D on my wishlist, but your photos are proof that you don’t need an expensive camera to get a great shot!

    Reply
  8. Shaquita

    I am a professional photographer, and so is my husband and after lugging our DSLRs (we’re NIKON people) around for years I am finally going to get my a mirrorless camera. Sony A5000 series.

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *