After almost five years in Germany, I’ve amassed an impressive body of work. I love many of the photos I took here, and some of them are even selling rather well. Yet, I have very few images to show when people ask me to show photos of Germany. Because — surprise, surprise — most people are not into architectural abstracts. They are interested in regular snapshots of mundane stuff: streets, shops, recognizable buildings, and what not. In other words, they want to be tourists, not art critics.
Camera and lenses aren’t the only photographic essentials that cost money. A decent machine with plenty of RAM and fast storage (preferably SSD) and rather expensive serious photography software are must-haves, too.
That’s at least how the conventional photographic wisdom goes. It may be so if you are making a living with your photography. But you don’t have to throw your hard-earned money into the bottomless pit of photography, if you are willing to look away from “industry standards” and “de facto” tools.
Planning a photo trip to Germany? After three years of living in Germany and visiting countless cities in the country, I have a handful of tips for you. No, they are not about the best shooting locations and what photographic gear to pack. They are more of a practical nature.
Besides a camera, lenses, and other photographic paraphernalia, there are a few things worth having in your photo bag.
Every year, a pine tree close to our house produces the most perfect cones, and I often pick up a handful of them on my way home. The cones are undeniably beautiful, but not of much practical use. Or so I thought, until one day it hit me that a cone would make a rather nifty SD card holder. Besides the SD cards designated for regular use with my camera that are stored in a proper holder, I also have a bunch of cards that I use only occasionally. These cards are all over the place, ad keeping tabs on them is an impossible task.
After many years of doing photography as an amateur, I came to a few simple and rather trivial realizations.
1. Focusing on the flaws of your camera is just an excuse to buy new hardware. Re-reading reviews of your current camera is the best remedy for that. The awesome features that made you buy the camera and overlook its shortcomings are still there.
2. Practically any current DSLR and mirrorless camera from Sony, Olympus, Canon, and Nikon is more than good enough if you are an amateur or enthusiast. That has been true for a while.
3. Reading the manual that comes with your camera is not a bad idea at all.