(This isn't really going to be about a wedding shoot...)
I'm not sure how I managed to get this far without having a good set of lenses and gear that complimented each other. Over the past several years, looking back, I had a very schizophrenic approach to camera gear. Often letting the buzz of something new (or old) get me rev'd up to buy something else.
After all, if everything I see people produce with said gear is good, it'll produce good results for me, too! Right? Eventually, I had bags and cases filled with a bunch of good gear, but I didn't have the workflow to support it or the wherewithal to actually use most of it. I was buying more than I was actually producing. This of course led to more stressful shoots and an exhausting amount of dragging gear from point A to B.
Now I won't get too far into how that mindset is the wrong mindset for a budding professional photographer/videographer but it's definitely forgivable as there are very few practical guides that exist for someone trying to figure out the right next move. It's also something I see really often with people starting out. It's really easy to get caught up in all the new fantastic gear that comes out almost weekly.
Don't get me wrong, there is a METRIC TON of people producing content out there talking about the latest and greatest stuff and what works for them. But there was never anyone out there teaching ME what to do next or what to buy next. (And even if there were, I'm not sure I would've listened.) Yes, there were gear focused youtube channels and tutorials, and while they were helpful in digging through the noisy market of growing equipment, it always just left me wanting more stuff. Rarely did I walk away from a video or tutorial feeling empowered. In fact, it usually left me thinking I didn't have what I needed! Sometimes this was true, but most of the time it wasn't.
So over the years, I bought and sold so much gear that if I decided to track it all financially, it would be embarrassing. I've wasted a lot of resources trying to navigate this profession and it's not something I'm proud of -- at all. The one blessing, I guess, is that it's given me experience with a lot of different gear which, to an extent, is helpful.
Having all that said, this last weekend, it really hit me how useful a good (and small) set of gear can be. Freedom from heavy bags. Freedom from changing lenses every couple minutes. Freedom from needing to worry if everything is going to look right in editing. That feeling of becoming so comfortable with your select set of tools that you actually feel powerful for a change instead of always a few steps behind.
This last weekend I shot a wedding with 3 lenses. That's it! And one of those lenses stayed on the camera for 80% of the day. (In that past, I've dragged as many as 12 lenses to a shoot -- I know. I thought I was quite the pro...) And looking at the results the next day, I couldn't be happier. The shots all compliment each other. The colors all have a similar rendering. And I was able to edit everything in one evening where it would likely take weeks in the past.
And it's not just about limitations breeding creative results (of which they most certainly do), it's just about really digging in, thinking about your gear practically and how you plan to use them.
So yeah. Here I am, several years into my professional career and I'm still having revelations. I've never been a proponent of "perfect". I think perfect is a fallacy and an often unobtainable and dangerous goal. So it's a little strange to me that it would take so long to connect that there is no perfect tool as well. But if you plan the job right, choose wisely and take the time to get to know your gear, you don't need your entire garage with you at all times.
These are my thoughts about random things related to videography, photography and editing.
Thanks for stopping by.