Upload & Sell: On
David Baldwin wrote:
My name is David, and I am a gear addict. Its not that I have much kit now (check my profile) its that in the past I owned A LOT of equipment. Like any addiction the seeds of its return are always there. The writer of the article I link to above proclaims he is "a big fan of Limitation creativity". I agree, and I feel using kit limitations to fuel both good photography and recover from the addiction is the right way forward.
Anyone else admit to being a current or recovering gear addict? Sorry if this post appears...Show more →
There are two interesting opposite and both, in my view, false notions about gear.
1. The more typical false belief around here, this being a gear forum after all, is that having the best gear and lots of it is critically important. To put it crudely, the acquisition of the largest stack of big, new, shiny things becomes the goal more than does photography itself - yet, oddly, many who pursue the gear claim to do so so that they can produce better and better photographs.
2. A secondary false belief that often pops up as a counterpoint to the gear lust holds that you will be more creative if you have less gear. To an extent I'm slightly sympathetic to that notion, but in the end it is equally false.
The real goal is to get to the place where you have and carry the gear that you actually use to make the photographs that you set out to produce. It is more about the appropriateness of the gear for the task(s) at hand than a) having the best, test-bench-confirmed objects or b) being able to say that you managed to make photographs in spite of your gear.
Basically, worry a lot less about gear. Get some, and then start focusing on making photographs with the gear you have.
In terms of equipment, the place you eventually want to be is one where you rarely think about the gear aside from how you will use it for the shot at hand. Lenses are, quite bluntly, tools. And as tools they are not the object, but only the means to do something more important, and their value is measured purely in how they affect that work of making photographs.
Oh, if none of this logic works on you, it can be useful to find out more about what some of your actual photographic heroes carry and use. I sometimes shoot with a person who might be such a personage for some reading this forum - a person whose large prints sell rather well, who does a steady stream of highly regarded workshops, and whose books some of you might have purchased. He shoots with two lenses - 17-40 and 70-200mm f/4. Period. I could cite a number of other similar examples.
By the way, there are limits to the "better to have and not need than to need and not have" paradigm, and in real photography we often find that we can do everything we need to do without carrying a great tonnage of gear. I tend to select from the gear that I have depending on the circumstances of the shooting. I doubt that even Petkal would think it wise to schlep a 800mm lens over a 12,000' pass or carry it along when doing street photography. ;-)