On November 18th, I was reading the forums over at dpreview.com and came across a video related to our obsessions with photography gear that had me laughing out loud! It echoed what I’ve read previously over at Ken Rockwell’s site so I emailed him the link. Today, it appeared on his daily update page which can be found HERE.
It used to be I’d be obsessed with the high end glass, never wanting to settle for anything less. I’d drag the DSLR everywhere I went – no matter how cumbersome. The reason? Back then, to get any sort of decent image quality it had to be the DSLR route. Period. Whether it was the excellent and diminutive Nikon D40 with a Sigma 30 f/1.4 attached, A Canon 20D with the 17-40 f/4 L or Olympus, it didn’t really matter – it was all about the image quality and maintain full control over the images I created.
Taking off on that, many then move on to shooting images of brick walls and examining the minute details of barrel distortion on their lenses, shooting focus charts to check if “my lenses are okay” and obsessively reading reviews by anonymous idiots who couldn’t take a decent image to save their life.
In the past year or two, I’ve actually started going in the opposite direction. As every day passes, the DSLRs see less and less action and the compacts more. It started with the Canon G9 and then theCanon G11. I still shoot with the Olympus E-3 (and occasionally the E-1), but the simplicity and image quality for 90% of the types of photos I take on a daily basis, the G11 is a fantastic tool! The DSLR kit simply isn’t really needed on a daily basis anymore. It comes out when the I need high speed shooting (ex. sports at 5fps), extreme weather conditions (weather sealed system with the E-3) or other specialized times.
The take away from all of this? It doesn’t matter what gear you shoot with. As long as you have mastered what you have, you can create excellent images. The only reason to really upgrade is if you find certain limitations in what you have that are outside of your abilities as a photographer to compensate for. Example could be: improved higher ISO performance (G11 vs G9), needing a higher FPS rate for high speed sports, etc. Otherwise, the more I shoot, the more I find joy in simplicity. RIght now, for me, the G11 is the height of simplicity in the digital world while still giving me the features I need to capture the image.
Enough of my rambling for today. Sit back and enjoy the video! The go out and shoot!!!!