The best camera to have…

There’s an old saying in photography: “The best camera to have, is the one you have with you.” I’ve always taken that saying to be a photographer’s version of “a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.”

There are times when I’m out shooting with just my camera and a single lens. I’ll find a shot that I’d rather do with a different lens (invariably, I’ll wish I had a super-long telephoto with me…) – but I’ll take the shot anyway. Why? Because I’d rather get it and work with the image in post, than not get it at all.

The gear I have, I have for some very specific technical reasons. I love shooting with it. But I run across people all the time who say “Wow, that’s a nice camera – all I have is this crappy smartphone.” I invariably tell them, “There are some great photographers who only use their phones!”


The photo above is one I took with my iPhone. I was visiting Yosemite in April and did a few selfies right before this shot. I just took it on impulse, but I really liked the way it turned out. The bottom right corner is too dark, but it can be lightened up in post-processing.

If my iPhone would have been the only camera I had that day – I still would have gotten some decent shots that I was happy with. A “good” photograph is about color, composition, and telling a story. A “bad” photograph taken with an expensive camera is still a bad photograph.

Lesson learned – use the equipment you have with you, and use to the best of your skill and its technical abilities. Don’t let your aspirations be limited by what you don’t have, let them be achieved with what you do have!

This entry was published on January 25, 2016 at 3:06 pm. It’s filed under blog and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

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