Author Topic: What is a Stop Worth, and the Meaning of Life  (Read 31297 times)

Alex Cejka

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Re: What is a Stop Worth, and the Meaning of Life
« Reply #15 on: November 22, 2015, 19:10:19 »
Perhaps we can view it from a different perspective: does this make us happy?  Happy people make others happy as well. Some people spent more money on alcohol and cigarettes than I do on photo equipment. Friend's of mine hobby is sailing. He spends lot of resources and time doing it but it makes a difference in his life in terms of enjoyment and happiness. I like photography and its gear. For most part I do not own the latest equipment but I have everything to have the job done (I shoot weddings and special occasions). From this income I support my hobby. Beside that I have full time job and that is strictly for our family needs. If I could I would be trying all kind of new cameras and lenses, but isn't it is always better to go out and shoot with what you have instead?

armando_m

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Re: What is a Stop Worth, and the Meaning of Life
« Reply #16 on: November 22, 2015, 20:48:42 »
Photography is a hobby for me, I think any hobby is an expense

If I get to use pro lenses they will likely not be owned by me
Armando Morales
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Ron Scubadiver

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Re: What is a Stop Worth, and the Meaning of Life
« Reply #17 on: November 22, 2015, 21:25:29 »
I was at a wedding rehearsal dinner last night.  The photographer who will also do the wedding was shooting with a D700 and what looked to me like an older version of a 24-120 zoom.  She can earn a living this way.

By no means should we deny ourselves what we can afford, but we should be careful in reaching a judgment about just what is we can afford.  Also, we should not let the acquisition of material goods of any kind turn into an addiction.  When one is addicted to anything they are in pain until the addiction is fed.  That leads to a mistaken sense of well being.  Just watch a smoker have their first cigarette when they leave a no smoking area.

The one stop parable was chosen because it is something we can all relate to as photographers.  We know what it does and what it costs.

charlie

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Re: What is a Stop Worth, and the Meaning of Life
« Reply #18 on: November 23, 2015, 00:43:45 »
We should also be careful not to judge other people based on what we think they should be doing with their lives.

While I fully agree that our culture has bred a huge desire to acquire material items, I'm not sure I understand the point of this post. You may think that the "not wealthy or a pro" government employee's D3 and 200-400 is overkill for him and his uses, someone else could just as easily feel that your D700 and 200-500 lens is overkill for what you do and you could just as well use a point and shoot camera. Isn't this just a matter of perspective? Do you feel that your life is ruled by material things also? 

Ron Scubadiver

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Re: What is a Stop Worth, and the Meaning of Life
« Reply #19 on: November 23, 2015, 04:50:40 »
We should also be careful not to judge other people based on what we think they should be doing with their lives.

While I fully agree that our culture has bred a huge desire to acquire material items, I'm not sure I understand the point of this post. You may think that the "not wealthy or a pro" government employee's D3 and 200-400 is overkill for him and his uses, someone else could just as easily feel that your D700 and 200-500 lens is overkill for what you do and you could just as well use a point and shoot camera. Isn't this just a matter of perspective? Do you feel that your life is ruled by material things also?

You sure are judging me.

Akira

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Re: What is a Stop Worth, and the Meaning of Life
« Reply #20 on: November 23, 2015, 07:24:40 »
I think Ron's initial post makes a lot of sense in many respects.

That said, hobby is a strange behavior or a habit, is highly personal and is sometimes unconceivable.  Owing cameras and lenses doesn't 100% mean that his or her hobby is image making.  Some (mostly guys) like precision mechanism and can go to heaven just by fooling around the equipments.  The more expensive, the better and the more addictive.

Some prefer nettles.
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elsa hoffmann

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Re: What is a Stop Worth, and the Meaning of Life
« Reply #21 on: November 23, 2015, 08:43:24 »
It makes a lot of sense to me too :)
"You don’t take a photograph – you make it” – Ansel Adams. Thats why I use photoshop.
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Jakov Minić

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Re: What is a Stop Worth, and the Meaning of Life
« Reply #22 on: November 23, 2015, 10:23:55 »
People buy stuff that they can afford.
If you feel like walking the park with your kids and acquiring for that purpose a D4s + 200-400VR, do it!
I am all for using the best possible tools all the time. I don't believe in compromises. I used to carry a D700+70-200VR to the beach.

I agree with Ron's view that we shouldn't spend all our money on gear especially if the money could be used for our kid's college funds. But how do you determine when you see someone on the streets with expensive gear that he cannot afford having the gear and paying for whatever else is necessary?

I would rather choose another approach in a more artistic way and claim that you can make wonderful photos without focusing on your gear. And that gear doesn't make a photo it's the photographer.
But if you can afford to buy and use a 400/2.8 for your daughter's soccer game, you have all my support :)

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Fons Baerken

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Re: What is a Stop Worth, and the Meaning of Life
« Reply #23 on: November 23, 2015, 10:30:36 »
Seen many great images done with a simple ps,
even if you dont have to support children, anymore,
blowing all your dough on gear for gear-sake, will rob you of the opportunity to go places to photograph.
Like buying a Ferrari and no money left for gas , now it sits in the driveway for you to dream-on.

tommiejeep

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Re: What is a Stop Worth, and the Meaning of Life
« Reply #24 on: November 23, 2015, 11:31:27 »
Well Ron, I am rapidly approaching 70 year and have a son rapidly approaching 15 years (thinking he's 20 already) .   At the moment, and particularly in light of Paris, I am more concerned about the world he is inheriting .  I am also concerned that going in debt for expensive education is not the value for a future that it used to be.  Unemployment of young people in parts of Europe is not based on Educational qualifications.   The age demographics in India are frightening.

I now drive a hand-me-down , 8 year old SUV, from my wife.  My last jeep lasted 16 years before it became too tough to keep it running.   In the past I have owned many expensive cars including one mentioned by Fons .  I had the money for petrol but the bi-monthly trips to the garage for tune-ups were too much.  I buy camera gear because it is what I enjoy.  I agree , and disagree , with Bjorn on gear making me better.  The 300 2.8vr really opened up my Sports shooting and the D3S was the icing on the cake.

I have never claimed to be a photographer.  My images confirm that but many people use, publish and enjoy my images.  I agree that going into debt for any hobby is silly.  The only money I owe anyone is for my wife's new car and I should have paid cash for that .  I do not have deep pockets.  Recently I've started selling gear just because I do not use it or it is not worth enough to sell it.  I finally sold my D200 to a good home even though I still enjoyed it and it had less than 6K clicks.

I try not to judge any one on what they spend or how they spend it.  Just nothing to do with me.   Photography has to be fun  :) , same goes for life in general but seems to be getting harder  >:(  I do judge people by how they treat others!
Navy is in the top 20 so life isn't all bad  ;) .... next weekend Ron, crunch time when they go to your fair city.
Just my take,
Tom
Tom Hardin, Goa, India

Ron Scubadiver

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Re: What is a Stop Worth, and the Meaning of Life
« Reply #25 on: November 23, 2015, 15:26:36 »
Many interesting thoughts...

Fons mentioned spending it all on gear and have nothing left to go anyplace interesting to shoot.  I have heard some lament they had fallen into the trap.  Akira  mentioned those with a desire to own precision mechanisms.  There may be something good about those folks because they add to camera and lens sales making it possible to bring this stuff to market.  For nearly any durable good you can buy there is a super high end alternative.  Look at Viking kitchen appliances for example.

Gary

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Re: What is a Stop Worth, and the Meaning of Life
« Reply #26 on: November 23, 2015, 17:20:10 »
For me, reading your OP has generated two courses of thought ... personal and photographic.

1) Personal- Decades ago an accountant and good friend told me of one of his clients that was living debt free. He paid for everything with cash. If he didn't have the cash on-hand ... it was not acquired. I appreciated that concept so much that I have adopted a similar approach. Presently, I haven't any debt of any kind. I only use a debit card. I like having no debt.

2) Photographic (my personal experience)- When I was shooting professionally (photojournalism), a Stop made a significant difference. (While the paper provided my equipment, I still had and used personal gear on assignments.) Regardless of weight and size, I always used fast lenses. In breaking news photography, there is no second chance ... missing a photo ... getting scooped because of equipment ... just was not acceptable for the professional.

But for the hobbyist ... only a few hobbyists, (the members of this forum notwithstanding), can take advantage of a 'Stop' or of flagship, top-of-the-line cameras. Generally, better more expensive equipment will make it easier to capture the exceptional image above and beyond what you would capture with lesser equipment. In other words, you'll get more keepers. In a competitive environment, ala news, when there is a person to your left with a D4 and a person to your right with a 1DX ... your are at a serious disadvantage with an entry level camera and a kit lens.

But for most of us with hobbyist level skill, shooting non-professionally and shooting in less than hosile envronments ... and with the additional power of high ISO/low light level imagery and IS/IBIS capable cameras ... a stop is meaningless other than ego.   
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HCS

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Re: What is a Stop Worth, and the Meaning of Life
« Reply #27 on: November 23, 2015, 21:34:02 »
... and claim that you can make wonderful photos without focusing ...

Stop right there! This is you Jakov  ;D ;D ;D
Hans Cremers

Gary

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Re: What is a Stop Worth, and the Meaning of Life
« Reply #28 on: November 23, 2015, 21:46:01 »
For those with pro level skill ... better gear will deliver better and more consistent shots and photography.
"Everywhere you look there are photographs, it is the call of photographers to see and capture them."- Gary Ayala
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Critiquing my snaps are always welcomed and appreciated.

Jakov Minić

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Re: What is a Stop Worth, and the Meaning of Life
« Reply #29 on: November 23, 2015, 22:09:15 »
Stop right there! This is you Jakov  ;D ;D ;D

You got me Hans! :)

I agree with Charlie on judging, and I agree with Gary on better equipment gives you more opportunity to achieve great results.

And I will stop right here as Hans pointed out and go make a blurry image with my pro level gear  8)
Just because I can and I can afford it, although I cannot use it properly  ::)
Free your mind and your ass will follow. - George Clinton
Before I jump like monkey give me banana. - Fela Kuti
Confidence is what you have before you understand the problem. - Woody Allen