Like every photographer, beginner and professional, I suffer from an insatiable desire to buy more gear. I literally have B&H open in another tab right this moment. But is it anything I really need as a working photographer?
I currently have one digital camera body and 3 lenses. One of those lenses was purchased very recently due to a need to better perform in my job here at my university. The other two are just as useful and needed for the work I do in both my free time and work time. This kit is as listed below:
- Canon 5D Mark IV,
- Sigma 24-70mm 2.8 Art,
- Sigma 70-200 2.8 Sport,
- and Canon 100mm 2.8 Macro IS
This is probably the most boring kit that ever existed and I absolutely love it. I have everything I would ever need to do a multitude of photography jobs (I'm not a video guy yet), and boring almost always translates to practical and effective in the photography world. I don't use primes because I can't afford the time or money to have multiple lenses that I need to swap during a shoot as much as I wish I did.
That touches on my next point: wants versus needs. I didn't necessarily want any of the pieces of equipment I own in terms of what is "cool" or "modern" nowadays. Would I love to have a Canon R5 and RF 28-70mm? Absolutely. Can I afford that kind of extortion? Absolutely not.
I had to make a choice when I finally acquired enough money to begin crafting a kit. I needed to find something that was both effective and practical and that turned out to be a 5-year-old camera that uses outdated memory cards. However, that 5-year-old is the most beautiful piece of hardware I've ever had the pleasure of using. It creates stunning images, has amazing capabilities, and all of its accessories are AFFORDABLE. The memory cards are super cheap and so are the batteries. It uses an extensive line of lenses and third-party options are half the price and just as good as the name brand stuff, trust me.
Now you're probably asking yourself why you're reading this rant of mine to begin with so I should probably get to the point. My point is that you don't need the newest piece of tech on the block despite what almost every influencer is telling you. You need not only what works, but works for your budget. I had personal requirements to give me peace of mind and the ability to do my job, and you should shop the same way.
Not only that, but older cameras specifically DSLR's are getting cheaper every year so it's worth a peep in my opinion. I'm just a broke college kid who's trying to make good pictures and a buck while he's at it so I need what works on MY budget and can help me expand that budget in the future.
Now stop staring at that $5,000 dollar camera and write down what you NEED. And while you're at it go make something cool.