How many different interchangeable lenses do you have?

Started 3 months ago | Polls thread
MOD Tom Caldwell Forum Pro • Posts: 42,753
Re: How many different interchangeable lenses do you have?

I don’t really know how many lenses I have but about 10 yers ago I was keeping a list and it was over 250 at the time. But I don’t madly shuffle lenses about like a crazy man and in fact some have never been used beyond testing them after acquisition.  Somewhere along the track you merge from lens-enthusiast into collector.

I don’t deal in lenses.

On the other hand when someone mentions a lens on fora I remember that “I have one of those” and often will get it out to check just what it can do.  Therefore I spend quite a lot of time taking pictures and practising to see if I can do better. That is “master the photographic gear” - this seems odd as the common perception is that we buy gear to make great or even greater images.  But I am more interested in understanding the process.  The process luckily is a lot deeper than simply pointing an AF camera at something and pressing the shutter and everything is “done” for you.  The essence of the mobile phone camera user and this would bore me stupid.

On the other hand 95% of my images are by-the-way and either recording something or testing (like Gary Winogrand) to see what things look like when they are photographed.  This has the advantage of trying different settings to either enhance nature, to be utterly realistic, or to simply give it an artistic spin.

I even go to extremes and try some ill-regarded or ultra-cheap kit to see if I can master it enough to take an acceptable image - not perfect, but any skills learned are harder tested using less perfect gear.

Remembering my friend who could best my big bag of special clubs at golf with a single old wooden shafted iron i think I can have now advantage of him even with a six year old GM5 and some pretty middling old legacy MF lens of the naughty shelf versus his old entry level dslr with kit lens or even his mobile phone.

I think that I have mastered the medium over many lenses and camera bodies and am now awaiting that single outstanding image opportunity that will make my name memorable.  I might have to wait a bit longer ....

Yesterday I was using a Pentax 110 70/2.8 with an RJ PTX110-M4/3 adapter with iris controlled by a bent piano wire on a GM5 camera body to shoot a helicopter lift in progress.  Just happened to be the gear handy -  I am sure that 70mm on M4/3 was more useful than a perfect mobile phone image.

We need photographic ability (learned or natural); good gear; and the “Photographic Opportunity”.  Generally we can manage with two out of the three but not one of these factors alone.  Having all three in place is perfect.

It is good to see another poll that investigates just who we are on this forum and what gear we have/use.

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Tom Caldwell

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