Upload & Sell: On
| p.4 #9 · Gear Addiction - Interesting Article |
I'm not sure if I'm a gear addict or just a hands on learner. For a while there I was more of a "deal addict" - I found most FMers to be knowledgable, helpful folks who taught me a bit during the course of a transaction. It was fun running up a respectable number of positive feedbacks, too.
In just under three years I bought and sold 9 camera bodies and 60 lenses, 4 tripods, 6 heads, a dozen filters, plus speedlights, PW's, bags, straps, and other paraphernalia - mostly here on FM and CL. It was fun! Trying out all that gear taught me what all the reviews I read could not - what kind of gear fits me and is best suited to the subjects I like to shoot. I'm sure that's different for everyone.
I've also learned shooting with other photographers that practically nobody who's any good gives a rat's patoot what's in my gear bag. They are focused on getting better results - mostly with the gear they already have, with few exceptions. I've learned a great deal by asking experienced pros how to get results like theirs with my gear. Usually they share several work-arounds to get similar results. Some situations simply require appropriate gear.
My early learning trajectory became gear intensive as initially I found it easier to use advanced technology to resolve what were moderately challenging compositions. Like an adolescent I would beam as I pulled a 85 1.2 out of my bag in a dimly lit venue ... to shoot stationary subjects. Doh! Or draw down on a squirrel ten feet away with a 100-400 to get a super close-up. I was making the rookie mistakes of using my wallet instead of my mind because I was in a big hurry to get "great" photos right now.
Now I'm down to 2 camera bodies - a 1.6x and FF, 3 zooms to cover the average focal range, and a macro lens. Yes, there are brief moments when I miss my 85 1.2, 24-70 and 17-55. But 10 days ago while packing for a trip to New Mexico I was very glad I could fit all my lenses and bodies into one carry on. I didn't have to hesitate or ponder which lens or body to take to the Santa Fe farmer's market, or the wineries - the midrange zoom was fine. I was glad to have all three hiking the Tent Rocks trail - my images ranged from 16mm FF to 300 x 1.6 plus some macro work.
The feeding frenzy is over. Been there, tried just about every body and lens (to 400mm) in Canon's current inventory. Because I tried so many and learned what they can do, I'm content knowing the gear I have now matches my knowledge and subject matter. All of them get used frequently.
I don't expect that to be permanent. I will keep reading, taking classes, talking with pros, and challenging myself to get better. Surely there is more gear in my future. But I'm at peace with what I've got - which beats the heck out of wondering if better gear would get me better images. Now I'd rather spend time shooting and learning than buying and selling. Whew - what a relief!