If I told you that buying this lens, or that tripod or whatever piece of kit would you can think of would solve all of your photography issues and propel you instantly into taking the pictures that you always dreamed of, you would immediately rush out and buy it, right? I think a lot of people would…
So, new lens could possibly cost you £500 upwards. New camera body, this would easily set you back a £1000 or more. New tripod could possibly cost you £300. Most people would have no hesitation considering these investments into improving their hobby and results.
But if I told you to book yourself some training courses and learn to get the most out of the equipment you already have, all of a sudden, you can’t afford it? I am always surprised by this.
A little while ago, a chap was in the gallery browsing at the photographs we have for sale. He commented that our pictures are so sharp and that he needed a new camera to improve his pictures. I noticed that he had his camera with him and that he also had the kit lens on it, neither of which he seemed to think were any good. I asked him why he thought the camera and lens were no good, he told me that he wanted to achieve pictures like ours and that more “professional” kit was required to do that. I then asked him what his favorite picture was and he told me it was one of the nightscapes that we have here because it was so sharp and nicely done.
When I told him that this was shot on the exact same camera and lens that he had in his hand right then, he was amazed. I then took him around the gallery showing all the pictures that I took with his camera and lens combination. Well, to say he was surprised was an understatement. We have photos in the gallery taken on camera and kit lens worth no more than £100 (like the ‘Beach Hut Kids’ below).
There are many information resources nowadays and you think it should be enough to learn from others, websites, free YouTube tutorials, you can read books, you can talk to your friends, etc. But let’s be honest, there really isn’t any substitute for learning from a teacher. Did you leave school having learned everything from YouTube? Can you learn to play a musical instrument solely from online tutorials? Sure, you can try and you will probably achieve a certain degree of knowledge after countless time spent browsing and reading, provided you have conquered your analysis paralysis. But there is nothing like human interaction, feedback and learning by doing amongst likeminded peers. It will surprise you just how much faster you learn and improve from professional training.
Investing in training and learning is the best way to improve. Of course it is not an either/or situation. You will need to invest in the right equipment for your needs too. But learning and advice from more experienced professionals will guide you and help save you money by investing in the right equipment to suit your needs, rather than just buying things in the hope to improve. And then, all you need is lots and lots of practice. Nothing is an instant success.
So, learn how to use your kit and get out there and practice! Remember the best camera in the world is the one that you have with you. And never stop learning.