John Watson Photography

“New” gear can be fun

There are times we get into a rut. It can happen in anything we do all the time. For me over the last year it has been photography. I did so many more shoots last year that I got to the point where I didn’t want to see my camera. I went on my annual road trip in September. I didn’t take a camera with me. Just the iPhone. Usually it is a photography-centered trip. I went to India and London this month for work and didn’t take a camera either.  I did take my Moment lenses, but didn’t take them out of my bag.  Nothing against them. :)

Last week I found an amazing deal on a camera that I have wanted to use for over a decade, the Hasselblad H4D. I used to rent camera gear from Keeble & Shuchat (long since closed) in Palo Alto, Ca. They had a couple medium format Hasselblads on the list. I imagined renting one of those and taking it to Yosemite for a weekend. The cost was prohibitive for me at the time.

The camera I found on Ebay is likely very similar to the model I had held once at the rental counter. I haven’t had a chance to take it out into the wilderness yet, but I did get to do a little natural light work at my local brewery and a bit of studio work this weekend.

I have a list going now of where I want to go and what i want to shoot again. A similar thing happened when I transitioned from a point-and-shoot digital to my first DSLR (Nikon D70), and from APS-C to full-frame. It isn’t so much the pixel count (24/36->40). The biggest thing is how this camera makes you slow down and think about your actions. It is almost like going back to film. You don’t just snap 50 photos in a location and move on. You pay more attention to how you are composing your shots. The ker-thunk of that leaf shutter is pretty rewarding too.

I hope y’all have things like this that happen from time to time in areas of your life that you are passionate about.

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