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Technology's growth is exponential and now it seems like every year there's a new camera body or new lens announced as well. But, will buying the latest and greatest or upgrading every year will make us happy?
This is a short post, I just wanted to share how I feel about this topic.
The answer to "Will the latest camera make us happier?" is, for most people it depends, but for me, it's a solid No.
There are many reasons why someone would buy new gear every year. Maybe that particular camera or lens makes it easier to perform a specific task, or maybe it's all about signalling and status.
Maybe you have worked hard and just want to buy the thing, you deserve it, it's your money you can do whatever you want. Or maybe you've been waiting patiently for many years and now it's a good time to upgrade.
Most of those situations can be valid from a particular point of view, but for the most part, the newly announced camera and that yearly upgrade cycle will NOT make us happy.
Hedonic Adaptation will make sure that is the case, your baseline will adjust, and now you'll be left wanting the newest and latest thing every single time.
Cameras are a tool, a means to an end, we do need cameras to practice our craft, but the craft is what makes us happy and fulfills us, not the tech or the camera itself.
There are times when the improvements are significant, and that justifies upgrading to a newer camera.
I talked about this in my X100V review, and you can watch it right here:
In that review, I mentioned that weather sealing is a big deal for me and my style of photography. So it made sense for me to upgrade. I didn't upgrade just because it was the newest camera at that time, I didn't upgrade because of coveting the technology.
And getting caught in the cycle of upgrading and buying new equipment every time a new camera is slightly updated or a new lens is released, is putting us at risk of forgetting that the craft is what matters.
This is not some sort of preaching session where I tell you how to live your life. But it's always a good idea to ask yourself these types of questions, to do some self-exploration before you pull the trigger on that new shiny toy.
Expectations Vs Reality
For example, Take a look at my YouTube channel. A camera review vs another video I wanted to make. A camera review vs another topic I wanted to discuss. A camera review vs literally anything else.
From this point of view, it would make sense for me to invest everything I have into buying new gear and new equipment and making camera reviews very often. It would contribute a lot more to the growth of this channel compared to something like this very post for example.
However, it would be disingenuous on my part, coveting the technology, selling a specific item and convincing you that it will make you happy, makes absolutely no sense to me.
Making Gear Accessible
When I do talk about cameras, lenses, and gear and review them, I try to focus on things that are accessible to everyone. That can potentially help you get started and practise the craft.
Even Things like affordable shooting in film, In this case, B&W. I've been working on a video about it, stay tuned for that.
To conclude, I'd like to ask you to try to remember the reason why you started your creative journey, or perhaps the reason why you want to start now.
It's not about the tech, it's not about the camera. It's about how it feels to create, explore, grow your artistic capabilities, and your style, express your voice and enjoy the process. To escape the reality that confronts you every day, and create your own. To offer some relief and happiness to your soul, and try to live a more fulfilling life.
Don't worry about the gear, worry about pushing yourself to create, worry about improving your skills. Focus on doing, exploring, and being who you want to be... Good luck with your creative journey.
This is a summary of my YouTube Video, you can watch the whole piece here:
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