First camera

What camera should you buy when you want to begin photography?

For a beginner starting out. Literally any camera. Your phone is a great start. But if you physically want a camera, any DSLR or bridge camera will do, or a film camera, it’s up to you.

My preference is a DSLR, just because I can have full control of the camera and the lens.

The important thing to remember is that it’s not about the camera, it’s all about you and how you use it. Anyone can buy a camera, but ‘having an eye for it’, that takes time to develop, unless you’re just naturally talented.

When you start out you don’t need to have the best camera, you just need a camera. It’s the same when you got your first car. You don’t start out with a Ferrari when you learn how to drive.

You can achieve extraordinary things with an entry-level DSLR and kit lens.

My first DSLR was a Nikon D3100 the standard 18-55mm kit lens. I used it for about 5 years and took thousands of pictures with it. It served me extremely well. From taking pictures of landscapes, animals, flowers, people, cars and houses.

As cheesy as it might sound, the only limit is you.

Last bit of advice.

Keep in mind to develop your own style.

Draw inspiration from others, but don’t try to copy them. Because then you will never be unique. You will never be different. You’ll just be another face in the crowd.

Do whatever you want to do. Yes, there are ‘rules’ for photography, but they are made to be broken. Don’t allow it to limit your creativity.

71 thoughts on “First camera

Add yours

  1. Something that made a big difference for me was switching to film. I tried a basic high end digital point and shoot (that still had some manual controls and shot RAW, almost a hybrid DSLR) and then my phone. The price tag on the DSLR’s was just too much for something I wasn’t sure I wanted to get too into. Problem also was that I was sloppy with my photo taking when I was using digital. I don’t feel like I improved very much and I’d go out to shoot and end up with hundreds of shots to go through and try to edit Photoshop to get them looking nice. Much of my time was taken up sorting through all those shots and trying to figure out which ones were worth editing. It put the emphasis on the back-end, rather than the adventure of being out in the world capturing it using the photographic process. I didn’t feel motivated, so I wouldn’t practice my photography and would only go out to shoot sporadically and eventually not at all.

    But, an old film SLR with a prime lens can often be had in good condition for about $40 or so, doesn’t require batteries except for the light meter, which probably isn’t working anyways and there are plenty of free phone apps that can do light metering. Then get some cheap film, read/watch a guide about the basics of film photography, and go out and do some shooting. I fell in love with it right away. Like some people fall in love with the ritual of listening to music on vinyl. It takes time, patience, dedication, and investment unlike just saying “Alexa play The Beatles”. Shooting with film is ritual and dedication and investment. You know that clicking the shutter may cost you about 50 cents each time once you factor in the cost of film and developing, but that’ll be a lot of shots before you spend as much on film as you would on a DSLR. And better yet, when you only have 24 or 36 exposures on a roll when you go out, you’ll begin to focus on making each shot count. And you’ll be thinking about the purity of photography since you’ll be limited on your tools as well and won’t be using Photoshop or software tools to fix your shots as much (if at all). And since you won’t be able to review your shots instantly on a screen, you’ll be thinking mentally about your photography, using your imagination about how your shots may look and thinking very carefully about your exposure. So, now your focus will be where it should be, out in the world shooting pictures, and not distracted with screens or spending hours sifting through your hundreds of shots. Plus, you get the look of film because you are shooting with film, a look that is very hard to replicate with software and to me is very appealing.

    Just my two cents, I know film isn’t for everyone, but it made a big difference for me after struggling to get into photography with digital.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. What a wonderful story. I absolutely love this! Do you mind if I use this as a post? You summed up film photography so beautifully. This is exactly what it is. Because you’re limited by the shots you can take, you make each one count. That’s where that ‘eye for detail’ is developed. By paying close to attention to what you want to photograph. Not mindlessly pushing the shutter button.

      “So, now your focus will be where it should be, out in the world shooting pictures, and not distracted with screens or spending hours sifting through your hundreds of shots” – This is exactly what photography should be about in the first place. About the journey. Going out there and being present wherever you are.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Thank you! Your post got me thinking and, when I think, I start rambling. I didn’t mean to make a whole blog post in your comment section! Glad it made some sense though. Feel free to use whatever you want. If you quote it, I’d appreciate if you’d linked to my dinky lil blog that only has a few pictures up, wcoastbeat.wordpress.com.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Reading this made me dig out my old Pentax K1000. Maybe I’ll refresh myself on techniques, and start using it again after many many years. I’ve been relying on my smartphone, which does almost everything I want, but doesn’t quite cut it sometimes.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. And what a beauty she is! I am in love with analogue.
      Yes we can take beautiful pictures with our smartphones, but it feels like cheating sometimes. Because there are so many settings we can change and we can take the picture over and over again until we get the perfect shot.
      With analogue, what you shoot is what you get. THAT is what makes it special. THAT exact moment. Whether it’s blurry, overexposed, grainy. That’s what makes it PERFECT.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much! ๐Ÿ™‚

      Haha. I completely understand. I’m not biased towards Nikon or Canon. I just started out with a Nikon around 5 years ago. The reason I haven’t switched to Canon is I’ve gotten so used to Nikon and I have a few Nikon lenses. To sell them all, buy new ones, learn a new camera, seems like a headache.

      To give you a straight answer. You’ll be absolutely fine either way. They are both equally good. (Many people will disagree with me of course)
      It just depends on how you use it. Might sound cliche. But it’s honestly the truth.

      Give Picasso a paintbrush and some paint, and he’ll create a masterpiece.

      Liked by 1 person

          1. Thatโ€™s a true fact! They can create wonders . Hope to be like that soon , at present my blog aims to give all info I can on food ingredients alphabetically. Hope to stay in touch for future things. Take care

            Liked by 2 people

          2. Thank you so so much. I genuinely appreciate that.
            That’s why I’m here. Some regard me as a ‘professional photographer’ and think they will never be able to achieve my level of skill with photography. Especially people just starting out with taking photos.
            I want to show them that it is possible. It doesn’t need to be difficult or complicated.
            I want to take those ‘things’ that people regard as ‘professional photography’ and make it as simple as possible for everyone to understand.
            To show that to take ‘good photos’ isn’t that difficult. You merely need a few basic guidelines then the canvas is yours to create whatever it is you want, in your own unique way.
            I want to practice what I preach. I’m creating another phone photography tutorial, I recently went out and took photos with my old iPhone 4 just to show that the gear doesn’t matter. It’s up to you and your creativity.

            Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Create a website or blog at WordPress.com

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: