Not long ago I was engaging with a friend over some typical photographers talk. Conversations of lenses, filters, bodies all the way to processing techniques. This conversation path is most apparent when two or more photography minded souls spend time together. It’s not isolated though to personal conversations. Gear talk is from cover to cover in most all photography magazines on the newsstands today. There is big money in photography and manufactures know that. It’s not that hard to convince many people that the “new” 70-200mm lens will take better pictures than their present 70-200. Or if they just had a 24-105mm they would be able to capture those beautiful shots they have been longing for. I know, the temptation is hard, planting the seed of doubt is easy. We all want the quick magic answer.
What would be your approach if you had unlimited choices when it came to gear. What lens would you chose if standing on the edge of the most scenic view you have ever been witness to? That question, all to often is what gets stuck in our minds. “What do I need to capture this scene”? The question, is really not the question at all. At least not the one you should be asking yourself. Why would you let the gear, the mechanics of equipment determine what the results of your work will be. Where is the creative process to take place. In the camera, or behind the camera?
Limitations, to limit initial choices, not results. If you think about limiting your choice of equipment you immediately start thinking about what you want your result to be within those limited confines. You go from vast choices to those of specific options. Limiting your choice and visualizing your results. The creative process is no longer based on equipment but rather, what you are going to do with what you have, regardless of what it is.
I have a belief, the most basic of equipment will produce the most creative of results when in the hands of an artist.*
*Artist – A follower of a pursuit in which skill comes by study or practice – the opposite of a theorist.