Photography by J.D. Magers

Filtering by Category: Opinion

Who Wants What for Christmas

Added on by J.D. Magers.

Over the last couple of weeks, we have been bombarded with list after list of what to get the photographer in your life for Christmas.  What's one more?  But instead of creating my own list (of what I want really), I thought it would be cool to link to everyone else's list and make it easier on everyone. So here we go:

  1. Scott Kelby's Annual Gonzo Gear Guide has been a cool read for me over the last few years.  I have always liked the way it is structured, and the rules Scott puts in place for recommending the gear.  I'll take the Tether Tool strap please.
  2. This list from Improve Photography has a nice mix of stuff from stocking stuffer on up to the expensive items.  I liked this list because it looks like a bunch of selections from a variety of people over all the categories. It isn't just one photographer's opinion in this list. I am intrigued by that X-rite ColorMunki display for $150.00.  That is something I have needed for quite awhile, and it's now in my Amazon cart.
  3. These two lists from American Photo Mag and are actually quite similar.  It even looks like the same media company produced them. Both of these lists contain the Peak Design Messenger Bag that was designed by Trey Ratcliff. That thing must really be awesome, because it is being recommended everywhere.  So I'll take that.
  4. has a really long list with 130 or so items on it.  Most of them seem to be gadgety type stuff, including about every version of iPhone camera case, or iPhone camera accessory, or camera lens coffee mug you can think of.  I already have a camera mug thanks.  Still, there were a couple of pretty cool gifts on here.  I'll take the Vintage Camera Bookends at Number 48 please.
  5. Last, but most definitely not least, I came across this post from one of my favorite photographers, David DuChemin.  The gift guide is perfect.  You just have to read it for yourself.

There is your information overload for the day.  There are an infinite number of other lists anyway.  Whether you're shopping for someone else or yourself, we need to remember that there are a variety of reasons for the season.  Me?  It's about spending time with my family and celebrating our baby's first Christmas.  We'll be tearing open all of her - I'm about to be spoiled rotten - gifts.  I encourage everyone to read David's post linked above.  It was awesome, and definitely something to think about.

Did I Make a Wrong Choice Three Years Ago?

Added on by J.D. Magers.

I have mentioned before that I have a long commute to work, and I fill that time by listening to podcasts.  The podcasts that I listen to are part of the inspiration for reviving Focustheframe and my photography.  One of the podcasts that I listen to is This Week In Photo, which is owned and run by Frederick Van Johnson.  There are typically two other speakers on the weekly show, where they all discuss relevant news stories related to the photography industry.  

Every week the show's hosts invariable talk about their gear, and I have noticed that more and more they have made the transition from dSLR's to mirrorless cameras from Sony or Fuji. Frederick for instance likes to talk about all of his Sony cameras and how great they are.  I also know David Duchemin shoots with Fuji when he travels, and Trey Ratcliff shoots with Sony.  I could go on for an hour about photographers who go out in the field, all seem to be shooting exclusively with mirrorless, and not traditional dSLR's.

Seeing all this buzz around mirrorless has got me wondering about my choice three years ago when I bought my 5D Mark III.  I saved up for almost two years in anticipation of buying a Mark II, but just as I was getting ready to make the investment, the Mark III came out.  I knew I would want that one, so I saved for another year.  I vividly remember the day in 2013 when I picked up the box at the UPS warehouse, and having the lady tell me she couldn't believe how big my smile was.  Three years is a long time to wait for something, but it makes it oh so much sweeter when you finally get it.

Fast forward three years though, and it seems like the dSLR is becoming a dinosaur and might be extinct in five to ten years.  This has me a little scared.  I bought my camera for the long haul, and I am building my gear out from that base.  I don't want to find myself down the road having to start all over again because the big players have suddenly switched gears and foregone the dSLR.  Cameras and lenses are expensive after all.  There are little alarm bells going off in the back of my head telling me I should start doing some research and look into switching before I get lost.  I feel like for once, I want to be out in front of the technology curve instead of just getting by.

What is bringing me back however, is that I am not a pro (yet), and right now the Mark III is awesome for my purposes.  I love this camera.  It works for me.  It works for the type of photography that I am doing and will be doing in 2016 and beyond.  I have to remember that when I hear all this talk about mirrorless cameras being the wave of the future and they're so great because they're so light, and flexible, and blah, blah, blah.  It's just noise in my head right now, and it's causing me to be distracted.  My focus right now needs to be on continuing to launch this business with the gear I have and know how to use.  That's what's most important.  When I've succeeded in that, maybe a transition to the hottest gear of 2025 won't matter anyway.  After all, I'm in it for the long haul.  In the end, we have to remember, don't get lost in the noise.  It's just that.