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This morning I did something I’m a little ashamed of. I locked myself in my office, opened up my computer and began to surf the web and look at things I knew I probably shouldn’t be looking at.
I ended up on sites that I knew would get me in trouble. Sites that could lead me down a path that I’d have a hard time explaining to my wife. Sites that make time fly and that you can spend a whole morning wasting your time on.
You know the ones – camera review sites.
I had a good case of camera lust this morning and I’m not really proud of it.
It started off innocently enough – I was simply checking in on a few of my favourite blogs (thanks Dave, Steve and Eric) but a simple comment or two about a couple of cameras from those guys and I was off on a wild ride. In the next 2 hours I looked at new mirrorless cameras from Olympus, old film cameras from Contax, lenses from Leica, ND Filters, Speedlights, read detailed comparisons on Nikon and Canon’s new DSLRs and much much more.
At the end of it all I had read a lot, compared a lot, wished I had a lot but I had done absolutely nothing.
This might sound a little strange coming from the owner of a photography site that publishes a camera review or two a week but sometimes I think our lust for cameras and gear could be getting in the way of actually becoming better photographers.
Perhaps ‘destroying our photography’ is a little harsh – but at the very least I suspect camera lust is distracting us from photography.
“If I could just upgrade to a better camera or lens my photos would be better.”
I get a lot of emails from readers who seem to put a lot of hope into a new piece of gear improving their photography.
While there’s no doubt that there is a difference in the output of one camera vs another and that not all lenses are equal – I do sometimes wonder what would happen if we put the time and energy that we put into researching gear into actually practicing our photography whether we’d see a bigger improvement.
This morning I spent a good 2 hours looking at cameras that I could have spent out with one of the cameras I already have at my disposal (and I have a few to choose from).
I have no problem with buying new gear or upgrading your camera but I guess this post is a challenge to us all (and mainly myself) to actually keep your camera lust in check and to get out and use the gear you’ve got.
The best way to improve your photography has nothing to do with the gear you’ve got. It’s all about practice.
It’s about taking (or wearing) and using your camera. It’s about learning to see light. It’s about understanding how your camera works. It’s about experimentation and play. It’s about learning and using new techniques.
Do you find yourself distracted by Camera Lust? What advice would you give others who do too?