In recent years I have come to conclude that the best camera equipment is that which best fits my style. That is, the equipment that best allows me to fulfill my vision without getting in the way. How can equipment get in the way? Well, if the camera and lens are big and heavy, if I’m thinking too much about what they cost, if the controls aren’t in places that I’m comfortable with, if I have to constantly change lenses to match the composition I want, and so on.

What this means is that I don’t always use the camera that is considered most professional, or the lens that tests to be the sharpest, or in some cases, I’ll even work without a tripod! I’ll use big range zoom lenses, smaller megapixel cameras, and not always apply the best photographic practices to assure maximal sharpness. And the reason is simple, sometimes making the image is more important than making it as absolutely sharp or perfect as it can be. It is because I am working to express a feeling and not absolute perfection (at least from the point of view of other photographers).

Most of the time I do set out with my sharpest lenses, cameras that will offer me best reproduction capabilities, and a big, sturdy tripod. But if it seems that the cost of using that “best” equipment means possibly not making the images that move me most, then small, light and sharp-enough will do. Tools serve my needs, not the other way around.

The image below was made at Jockey’s Ridge on the Outer Banks of North Carolina this past August. There was a family of four just walking among the otherwise empty dunes and I used the wide end of a super zoom lens (Canon 28-300mm L) to emphasize the scale of the location.

Jockey's Ridge - (c) Paul Grecian www.paulgrecianphoto.com
Jockey's Ridge (c) Paul Grecian 2008

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2 thoughts on “The Best Camera Equipment Is …..

  1. Very cool! Sometimes I’m amazed at the quality of disposible cameras, even. Although I’ve fallen completely in love with my digital, it’s a good idea not to limit one’s self to any, one setup, y’know?

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