My first camera, when I was younger was a Pentax MZ-50. It was a film camera which inspired me to take photos with the thing many people would remember – film. You know that stuff you had to load into the back of a camera? Those were the days…well I’m sort of glad there over for me because my second camera became the centre focus for most of my love for photography. It was a Canon EOS 40D a Digital SLR which seemed to only capture great shots.
I thought that Camera was an extension of myself. I lived and breathed the brand – I was a fan boy. Canon was my life, I was seeing red with white text, I wanted to represent the brand and take the best possible photos I could take.
Looking back I was so single minded because of this and I think my photography suffered.
Being singly brand minded in the photography world can be a bit of a trap. I can understand how some people just fall in. It normally starts with their first camera, followed by a new lens and another and so on, it happened to me this way. Before I knew it I had a collection of gear which was associated with one brand and when asked why I shot with what I had my normal response was:
I’ve always photographed with this brand.
I had only focussed myself on catch phrases like ‘L Series’, ‘EOS’ and ‘Rebel’, anything else was a distraction.
Does this sound like someone you know?
So why is it important to expand your horizons?
Why should photographers in this modern world be more open minded to experimenting and using different products?
Let me tell you why…
Because you’re missing out on some of the best technological breakthroughs the world has ever seen.
Making the change could also help you in your career by possibly making you a produce better photographs due to technology advances.
How do I know this?
From experience…let me give you a few examples.
Earlier in the days it would have been great to have used Olympus mirrorless cameras due to their unique dust reduction system. I got so frustrated using my Canon and finding ‘dust bunnies’ in my photos. Sure Canon fixed it in the end and so did all the other brands, but Olympus just seemed to have solved the problem early on in the piece. Fast forward years on and it seems like their stabilising system is a very ‘stable’ platform to be on.
What about Panasonic’s break through in the compact and video markets? The new Panasonic GH4 is like cream on the top of video cameras. Vision so smooth it looks like silk? If you were a Canon 5D MK III shooter wouldn’t you wish you had a panasonic right now?
So with these few examples you can see where I’m going here. There are many brands out there and they all offer many different advantages.
Yer there are benefits of brand switching but in the end it comes down to taking a leap. What’s holding you back? Your loyalty?
Let me tell you something, camera brands from my experience don’t have much loyalty. Most of them are just interested in selling you a box so when it comes to deciding on what gear to purchase and use, loyalty shouldn’t really come into your mind. The other objective you may come across is ‘it’s too expensive, I’ve got to much invested in my current kit.’ Really?
It doesn’t take much to list your kit on a second hand site or sell items to your friends. Sure I acknowledge you will lose some money from the original purchase price, but be rest assured you will gain so much more than a dollar figure from switching to another brand. The things you can look forward to are
1) New technology – what about better low light photos, better stabilisation, video on a new quality level or just a faster camera?
These little things can make a big difference in the way you shoot!
2) A new way of taking photos based on brand new specifications on your camera.
3) Expanding your photography knowledge to include a new system. You’ll find you have much better insight to educate people starting out in photography.
In conclusion let me finish with this (rant). Why is it that the world is so divided over brands? Why can’t we accept the world of photography for what it is and acknowledge the growth, knowledge, innovation and professionalism each brand brings. Imagine what the world would be like if there was no Canon, we might not have had the world’s first focal-plane shutter camera. Or what about Nikon, who introduced one of the first autofocus camera models. I like to go about my day by acknowledging what brands are around and how they can all make a difference in the world we live. I think lots of other people should think the same way.
I would like to take this opportunity to say, stop thinking in one mindset, look beyond the brand your currently shooting and experiment with others to expand your horizons and become a better more informed photographer. Don’t be a fan boy like was.