Do you find that you keep telling yourself “If I just get this”, “If I save and buy this, my photography will be that much better”? That lie you tell yourself, to get that faster lens or camera, or that changing your style will make you happier. No mater what I do, I always seem to start looking at alternative gear and styles, I can’t help it. I seem to think that getting a 28mm over my 35mm will make everything better.
The trick to snapping yourself out of this, is telling yourself “but then what?”. What do I mean by this? Lets say you get the gear, you get everything you wanted, now what? You still can only shoot with one camera and one lens at a time. The more options you have the more unhappy you become, because you have more options to master. You start questioning, did I pick the right option? You become a jack of all lens and cameras, master of none.
I strongly suggest, and I’ve done this myself… down grading. Personally I’ve gone from a 24 mega pixel camera to a 10 mega pixel camera. And you know what I found, images look the same on the screen and print (unless you zoom into 100%). The upsides are, file sizes are smaller, and my camera gear kit has gone down to one camera, one lens. Less to carry, less to worry about, less to insure.
I’m trying to be very monk with my gear. Being content with what I have. I keep telling myself the more limitations you have the more focused you will become. The more creative you will have to be.
Now before you say this is the stupidest thing ever. Why would I want to limit my options and creativity? The main reason I’ve decided to leave everything and only use one camera and one lens is… style. My photos have become consistent, the same look, feel, sharpness, vignetting and colours. The amazing thing you start to notice about using on kit, is it starts to become a part of your style, people start to recognise your images and associate them to your name.
So getting rid of gear envy is hard. You will have your weak moments. Remember to be content with what you have. Do you really need that extra light? Is window light apart of your style? Do you need that 85mm 1.4? or is everything in focus your style? Once you remove options you can begin to focus, and master your kit. Be consistent with using one type of gear, start focusing and moulding your style. Become a master of one type of gear, don’t be another cookie cutter camera operator, chasing megapixels.