Lucy and Mr. Bean Clean a Camera

You know those physical comedians like Mr. Bean who crack you up at how exaggerated they are and how utterly nonsensical the situation they get themselves in seems?  Well, this morning I was Lucille Ball all over the place, but instead of melting into a puddle and bawling, I totally Mr. Beaned it and walked away as if there was nothing too see behind me (as the house was burning down).

This morning I was preparing my camera and lenses for a photo shoot this afternoon.  I had my primary camera at the beach all summer so I figured there was surely sand in every crack so it was due for a good cleaning.  I was so pleased with myself as I pulled out my lens baby and my lintless lens paper and cleaned all of the lenses and filters and brushed the dust off my camera.  However, as I was removing a lens from the camera body I thought, hmmm, maybe I should dust off the sensor real quick with this dusty lens baby brush I just used all over the outside of my filthy camera body, BRILLIANT!  Cue the clown music.

I put my 85mm lens on and looked through the camera—WHAT THE HELL?!  There’s dust and even a stray bristle like the kind that come off a cheap paintbrush all over my sensor, I felt nauseous.

Surely, all I need to do is open it up and blow on it now, that should do it.  Nope.

Imagine this, I’m wearing my lintiest cotton bathrobe as I feverishly blow, and now wrap Qtips up with lint-free lens paper and rub them wildly on my sensor…then replace my lens and gasp, ACK!  It’s WORSE!  Holy shit!  I have to leave for this photo shoot in 30 mins.  Maybe I should take a break and eat something, that will clear my head.

Egg sandwich consumed.

Now I’m googling “cleaning your Canon sensor” because I have plenty of time to figure this out.

By now you’re wondering (among other things) don’t you have another camera body you can use?  You’re a professional, right?  YES, duh, of course I have my back-up camera that’s missing a battery that I totally forgot about ordering.  No big deal.  This has been my “go-to” back up camera for a while but quite honestly, I’ve never needed because my camera is AMAZING and has never let me down…too bad that hasn’t gone both ways, sorry camera.

The flail continued even after I read the very helpful website on how to clean your sensor at home (step 1, order these exact materials)…then did the opposite and made a bloody mess of my sensor.  It was a like a techno crime scene.

One thing you have to understand about a photographer’s primary camera is that its an extension of your own hand.  You know the buttons, you know how to set it up with barely a glance, you know the feel of it.  Your back-up camera is like a clumsy teenage sex scene—awkward, unfamiliar but the job gets done.  Sigh, crap, I guess I’ll bring both.

On the way to the shoot I get the brilliant idea to buy some canned air—it just might blow all that shit off my sensor!  (FYI, the UPS store and Harris Teeter grocery store do NOT have canned air so don’t waste your time.  Also, Walgreens has tons of stuff I need and didn’t even know it.)  I am going to shock you now and tell you that the canned air was semi-successful and I may be editing out some spots out but the images are lovely.

Even Lucille and Mr. Bean get lucky sometimes.

PS. I’m sending my camera body off to be cleaned properly now.

PPS. My husband just read this from the other side of the world and is probably snorting a laugh and shaking his head at me…he loves me.

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