Saturday, 17 March 2018

New Beginnings

The Whatsit

 D300, 35mm f1.8 G DX

It's no secret that I've been struggling with shooting motivation over the last 5 years. I've been pretty open about how that's affected my film shooting, but less so about how that's affected my digital. Largely because I'd always assumed that film was my 'real' shooting and blamed a lot of my motivation issues on equipment struggles on the digital side. To be blunt, I love the promise of mirrorless, but the reality has never quite worked out and I was over

To elaborate, I shot the following number of digital images in each year since 2012 (my last year of full-time school, I finished school in June 2012, but didn't officially graduate until 2013)

2012 - 10233 images
2013 - 7220 images
2014 - 5224 images
2015 - 1789 images
2016 - 1640 images
2017 - 2653 images
2018 - 617 images (to date)

As a rule, I usually have a bump in production in around March, then things taper off until June, with July/August/September as my main shooting season. It's pretty clear that whatever was affecting my motivation, it bottomed out in 2015-2016 and things started looking up in 2017. I suspect the numbers are a bit off the actual trend as 2014 was the year I made a kick at the can shooting Nikon again, and that bumped the numbers up for the fall by a large amount. Never should have traded that stuff away.

Chasing the Dragon has been a big deal for me, and a major negative impact on my work. It's no surprise that my shooting started to recover when I quit fooling around and just bought an older Nikon that I knew worked for me (D300), although the decision to get rid of the mirrorless stuff and swap it for a D90 in mid-2016 was a solid idea. I think if I'd ended up with a D300 then, I would have seen my numbers recover then, rather than a year later, but that really was a matter of what I could get from trading in my m43 stuff (it's been a long time since I've actually invested real money in camera gear, it's always always been swapping plus beer money since I left Verizon in 2011, the one real exception was getting the EM-1 in 2015). It's now been nearly 2 years since I quit chasing the perfect system and I think I might just have got things finally sorted on that front.

The reality is that I'm quite comfortable shooting older Nikon kit, it's cheap, I like the results and I'm motivated to shoot. That has other benefits (especially health related, if I'm shooting, I'm walking and health & exercise is another area I've struggled with for the last few years.). And well, if my D300 dies, I'm $200 away from a replacement (amazing considering it was a $2200 camera when new and is still very capable)

As to mirrorless, I think there will long be a place in my kit for a small body with a 28mm equivalent. But nothing beyond that. As much as these systems appeal to me, what I've got works, and I shoot more when I'm using it.


  1. Good to see you shooting more. I tend to hold on to cameras at least 2 to 3 years once fine the body that I really like; it was the lenses pushed me out and take pictures. I shot more than 20,000 pictures in 2016. Most of the pictures aren't very good but I went out and shot anyway. Passion of shooting never left me. Even right now, with my hands and legs disabled, I still think of taking pictures every day, and one day I will recover and do just that.

    I hope you will keep shooting. Frankly dear does not mother that much. We will always adapter using it, at least for me it is true.

  2. I think at some point the hunt for the right camera/system just killed the experience for me and I lost the passion to shoot to a great extent. Since last year it's come back though, and I'm out shooting more and more.

    I was quite saddened to hear of your injuries, I hope you recover swiftly and are able to shoot once again soon.