I just stared at him, astounded that he thought buying this tiny digital camera teetering in the palm of my hand, costing more than one month’s mortgage payment was a good idea. “No way,” I told him, despite the eager salesperson’s gaze, the enticement of the open box spilling colorful packaging all over the counter.
I held the small silver camera in my hand, “we don’t need a digital camera, we have a film camera, it’s good enough, this is just a fad.”
That was a 6 digital camera’s, and a few decades ago, and it still remains one of his favorite stories to share with friends.
He’ll tell them that I’m in love with photography, and that he suggested purchasing our first two megapixel camera, and it’s true.
The images I take, the prints that hang on walls, the line of greeting cards which paid for larger cameras were only the start of a journey, my love of photography continues.
The world of digital camera’s changes so fast that what you buy today can be declared obsolete as fast as the latest computer is. Whether you’d like to upgrade your digital point and shoot to a newer model, or make the move up to the DSLR market, camera’s are expensive. You’re paying large sums of money for cutting edge technology, so it’s a good idea to make the wisest choice for your budget and skill level.
Bigger might not be better
Too much camera can overwhelm you just as fast as a camera that is too limited for your needs. I’ve got a friend who was talked into purchasing a expensive camera for her small business, she was in a hurry and made a snap decision which she now regrets after spending too much money, She’s extraordinarily busy running her business, needed a camera she could pick up, take the shot, and move on to something else that required her attention. She ended up being talked into a camera way beyond her abilities, it’s so complex she doesn’t have the time to learn how to use it, and there it sits unused in the box.
There’s no point in purchasing a fancy DSLR if you’re going to be shooting in auto mode all the time. Consider a entry level camera if you find that the model you’re thinking of purchasing is too complex for your needs. Don’t be talked into buying a camera that’ll end up sitting in the box gathering dust because you don’t feel comfortable using it.
Get what you need from your camera
If you love photography, purchasing a camera that has potential to grow as your skills do is well worth trying to fit into your budget, providing you won’t outgrow it before it wears out. I made that mistake when I purchased a less expensive point and shoot Panasonic, but it couldn’t do what I needed it to do.
Look for a camera that challenges your skills, but also grows with you as you learn. If you’re the kind of photographer who regularly shoots in auto mode, and the thought of shooting in manual scares the living daylights out of you, don’t buy an expensive DSLR. Get a good point and shoot, with great modes, and options, knowing that you’ll take just as lovely shots, and enjoy yourself more while you do it.
“It’s the photographer’s eye, not the camera that makes for a good shot.”
While I’m happy with the model that I shoot with now, a Canon 60D, DSLR, [camera bodies usually last me around 3 -4 years] I’m always planning ahead to my next camera even as I use my current one.
DSLR camera lens are not one size fits all, each manufacturer offers their own specific lens geared towards their models. Canon, Nikon, Sony, and Panasonic, are some of the manufacturers that offer a wider variety specific and great quality lens, with Sigma offering good quality lens that are compatible with many of the major brands. Once you start to build your lens collection, it’s going to be expensive to move to another brand.
Before I bought my first DSLR, I had to make a choice between Canon, and Nikon, although I was in enamoured with Nikon, I ended up with Canon, and haven’t regretted it at all. My expensive investments into extra lens means I will most likely live with Canon forever. Spend some time thinking about where you plan to be in the next decade or so before you purchase any brand of camera.
Don’t forget that a great investment with each lens is a filter, they can run you $35 and into the hundreds of dollars but they are worth every penny to protect your expensive lens from scratches and dust. And much cheaper than a new lens.
Research rewards you
I like the reviews in Popular Photography magazine because they trial the newest models, and rank them for easy comparison. Visit camera stores, talk to sales people, ask about sales, get different opinions, ask your friends what kind of camera they love and use. Check online reviews.
Contact bloggers whose photography you admire, and ask them what kind of camera they use. All this helps to ensure that your next camera is the perfect fit for your needs.
Jen @ The Light Laughed
Just a note: I’m taking full advantage our beautiful summer weather while we still have it, fall and winter come too soon around here. I’m changing up my summer schedule to accommodate our gorgeous sunsets, blissful weather, and blooming flowers. My camera is lonely, and needs a good workout.
The Light Laughed will be posting on Fridays for the next little while.
I’m still visiting my community of fellow bloggers, and posting every Friday, and will be back to a fuller fall schedule when summer is over. You can still find me sharing my work on social media, and on my Instagram feed.
Until then, see you next Friday.