Tuesday, August 18, 2009

What camera do you use?

I got this question again the other day. A person wrote me and asked "what camera do you use?" Here's my stock answer:

I use black bodies with either black or white lenses.

In short, I don't like talking about gear. While I think having good camera gear is important, I think the model and brand is usually irrelevant as long as it produces the look you want at a high enough quality to fulfill the customers' expectations.

As soon as you throw out a short answer like "I use a Canon 1D Mk3" or "I use a Canon Xti", the gearheads out there immediately start lining up megapixel count, frame rate, cost, etc., and try to judge the value of your photography (or at least your status as a photographer) by the camera you use. Folks, Chase Jarvis is about to put on a gallery show of photos he took on his iPhone. It's not about the camera.

A saying I like that deals with this issue: If a person comes up to you and says "wow, great photo, I bet you have an awesome camera", you can look at the pen in their pocket and say "wow, great pen, I bet you're an awesome writer".

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