Do You Really Need That $10,000 Lens? Probably Not.

When I first started looking at getting into photography, I think I—like most people—instantly thought I was getting into a hobby that would make me go broke with how much everything cost. And it really can be that kind of hobby, one that runs you into debt for little payoff.

But does it have to be?

In today’s world, there are a million places where you can get a started DSLR and go wild with it, it’s what I did. I found a basic camera with some basic lenses and just started teaching myself, seeing what worked and what didn’t. And for a long time I really, I mean REALLY, wanted one of those insanely priced lenses. But I resisted (by way of not being able to afford them).

But to be honest, I am glad I did, because it made me learn how to work with what I had, and it’s led me to say something that makes some people cringe—THERE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH STOCK LENSES.

There is Nothing Wrong Your Stock Lens

I will stand by this statement forever and always, because I feel there are way too many people who honestly believe that the only way to make it and take fantastic photos is to show off with some lens that costs as much as a bungalow in Florida. But this just isn’t the case.

Sure, I will admit that a fancier lens WILL let you take clearer photos, sharper images, and other cool things—I really do get that. My point is this: there are still a ton of ways to take amazing photos with your camera on stock lenses. All you have to do is be creative, and trust your skill. You’re going to be abe to make stock-image-worth photos, I guarantee it, and you won’t have to pawn your wedding ring to do it.

Take Advantage of the Tools You Have

What would you say if I told you that you probably don’t even need a DSLR to achieve the level of photography you need for your website? Crazy?

Actually, not really.

In this day and age, the solution to your photography woes may be sitting right in your pocket—literally. Believe it or not, your phone may be the best solution for what you need. In fact, there are now entire commercials filmed on iPhones. Sure, it’s a sales gimmick, but they did it, didn’t they? Lenses in your phone are becoming just as powerful, if not more so than a fully professional lens, so don’t be intimidated! It’s not the age of flip phones anymore.

The point of this section is pretty simple: work with what you have, because you probably have the ability to take quality photos right at your fingertips. All you have to do is think outside the box, experiment with the equipment you have, and get creative.

Price Doesn’t Always Lead to the Perfect Shot

This last point is one that I cannot stress enough—an expensive lens does not guarantee a perfect shot, you still have to work for it.

As with most industries, just because you have the most equipment doesn’t always mean you’re the best. In fact, I know plenty of instances where I have seen average work from individuals with setups that cost the price of a new car. You still have to know what you’re doing, and skills will always push you further than your wallet. Don’t believe me? There are people who take incredible photos…from a shoebox pinhole camera.

You can’t buy the perfect shot. Sure, you can get fancy tools that may make it easier, but experience will always win.

Photography can definitely be an intimidating hobby, especially when you start researching equipment, but don’t let this dissuade you. Photography is one of the most versatile art forms around, and there are many ways to get started, no matter your budget or experience.

It’s a hobby that’s amazing to explore, and fun to experience. Start small, use your phone, and follow the path that is best for you. You can do this!

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