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Stop worrying about your camera

 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

 

Worrying about your camera is just going to get in the way. 

Don't baby it, keeping it in its bag and worrying about every little scratch. (I'm not here to preach against UV filters or dispel scratches on lenses, but there are many many articles that basically say, UV filters are shit and small scratches make virtually no difference to your photos. It all comes down to resale value - of which I would argue the experience of photography usually outweighs the lamenting over the small monetary loss after 3-5 years when you want to sell your camera or lenses, but I digress.) Become a better photographer by looking around you, and always having something at hand. 

Take chances with what you want to take photos of. There are so many fleeting moments passing by you. People, places, and how those people interact with those places. If you really want to take great photographs, you have to overcome the fear of treating your camera like a newborn and rough it up. Don't let your protective tendencies of a relatively small investment get in the way of your passion. 

 

 
 
 Mu Ramen // Long Island City, NY

Mu Ramen // Long Island City, NY

 
 Future Music Festival Asia // Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Future Music Festival Asia // Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

 

On the flipside, don't let the camera get in the way of your photography. 

In my opinion, photography isn't just the process of taking photos, but just the ability to mesh your life experiences while taking photos. It's a delicate juggle between capturing moments, while still being in those moments.

If you're fumbling around with lenses and trying to figure out a myriad of problems on your camera while a fleeting moment passes you, you're letting photography get in the way with your life. Chase Jarvis is famously quoted for, "The best camera is the one that's with you," and that's the key point I want to really drive home.

Stop worrying about having the latest and/or greatest, or potential FOMO when you don't bring your entire collection of lenses. (Chances are you'll probably forget about it in 10 minutes.) You shouldn't be on a leash by your camera, hauling heavy gear with you on your trip. Bring what you can, so that you can document your experiences, while being able to actually experience those moments. Maybe all you need is an iPhone, or a small camera like the X100T.

 
Don't be afraid to rough house your camera, it's built for photography. Don't be afraid to even leave the Canon at home, your iPhone will probably do.
Dallas Kwok