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Are good images the antidote for GAS?
Old 04-14-2019   #1
chipgreenberg
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Are good images the antidote for GAS?

A few months back I wanted to try shooting with a new “look.” Part of this aesthetic was effectively using out of focus areas in my images. I’ve never been a wide open -bokeh guy. I started doing homework on which lenses produced the best bokeh. Looked at a huge number of examples online. Started scouring the internet for what good examples of these cost used.

This was a fun exercise. Just as I was hip deep in my “homework” I started editing images from recent shoots done in this style. And I had some images I was really happy with. And lo and behold the bokeh from my current gear looked awfully nice. And I became more interested in shooting more with my current gear and seeing what it and I could do than looking for something new.

I like cameras. I’ve had tons of them. Really nice ones. But I like to create images which isn’t always about the camera.
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Old 04-14-2019   #2
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I thought good images was the cause of GAS.
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Old 04-14-2019   #3
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I think you're onto something chipgreenberg. I know from my own experience that when I'm making images that I'm really happy with, GAS goes out the window. But when I'm in a slow period, making images that seem pretty blasé, then GAS comes on strong.

A great cinematographer told me something many years ago, "It's easy to buy gear, making beautiful images, on the other hand, is much harder."

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Old 04-14-2019   #4
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The OP makes it sound like GAS is a bad thing.
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Old 04-14-2019   #5
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Interring Tim. I post this to see what others think, but my GAS was cured. For now.
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Old 04-14-2019   #6
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No. I had a great time exploring new gear. Just decided I didn't nee any the end of the day

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The OP makes it sound like GAS is a bad thing.
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Old 04-14-2019   #7
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Where are some lenses which I was interested in, but they have awful bokeh.
I'm taking pictures not for bokeh, but I don't want lenses with awful bokeh (swirl, double images, buzz).

Good image often not directly related to the gear for me. Almost any gear will give good picture. From Holga to M10. It is not gear, but photog.
Willing to work, improve, learn, try. It could be done with same gear.
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Old 04-14-2019   #8
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For me it is the printing that currently seems to be keeping the lid on my GAS. I am contact printing some past 8x10 negatives and am deciding that I really need to work harder on my technique, not my gear.

In plain English; A lot of my negatives really suck and are very hard to print.

Since it does not seem to make any difference which lens I was using then the only thing left is the photographer.

Maybe the secret to curing GAS is to realize that you are not as good a photographer as you thought you were.


I think I was getting better negatives when all I was using was my K1000 and my M 50/2.
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Old 04-14-2019   #9
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For me, gear isn't about image quality or having the best to boost my ego. It is about comfortable compromises. I want the best camera, for me, that meets my criteria for what I want to personally accomplish. I'm not pro, so I can use anything. I prefer digital. However, my hangups are the body and lenses have to be on the smaller side, the AF has to focus at a sufficient speed in or to bring my camera to my eye quickly without missing the shot, and I prefer classic controls. If I have these things, I tend to make my best photos without having any excuses.
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Old 04-14-2019   #10
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"I think I was getting better negatives when all I was using was my K1000 and my M 50/2."

That's because you probably were. Your 35mm lenses were designed for sharpness, while LF lenses generally are about coverage. That LF contact print may have tons of micro detail, but it likely won't pop off the wall like a print from a smaller neg.

You're either a LF shooter, or you're not. I tried it, but quickly gave it up because I preferred the negs from the two 6x6 I would always bring along when taking out the 4x5. I didn't have to lug all that gear either w/ a MF camera, not even a tripod, so the shots could be a lot more spontaneous.
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Old 04-14-2019   #11
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I buy gear because I'm curious and fascinated with it. It's been years since I needed any more than I already have. I certainly don't want to just keep acquiring more, however. So my bargain with myself is that before I buy a piece of gear now, I sell something that I already have.

And yes: the more photography I do, the less I have the urge to buy more equipment. What I have is good enough.

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Old 04-14-2019   #12
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Bellows compensation. Are movements involved? A K1000 with a built in meter is certainly easier!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pioneer View Post
For me it is the printing that currently seems to be keeping the lid on my GAS. I am contact printing some past 8x10 negatives and am deciding that I really need to work harder on my technique, not my gear.

In plain English; A lot of my negatives really suck and are very hard to print.

Since it does not seem to make any difference which lens I was using then the only thing left is the photographer.

Maybe the secret to curing GAS is to realize that you are not as good a photographer as you thought you were.


I think I was getting better negatives when all I was using was my K1000 and my M 50/2.
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Old 04-14-2019   #13
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For me GAS is about getting something that will let me do what my current gear won't of course this always bring up the question of how much do I really need/will I use that capability example the high ISO capability of say a M246 or M-10 vrs that of the M9.
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Old 04-14-2019   #14
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I find poverty is pretty effective! lol
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Old 04-14-2019   #15
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I'm not sure. When I look back at some of the images I have printed, I wish I had shot them on medium format digital rather than APS-C. Unfortunately, there is no going back.
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Old 04-14-2019   #16
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I have tried enough cameras to settle on one that seems to capture most of the pictures that appeal to me. It only makes sense to concentrate my limited photography time using that camera.
GAS lies in the interest in diverse types of cameras, and is a pursuit altogether seperate from photography. I find no shame in having a drawer full of cameras that never hold film.
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Old 04-14-2019   #17
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The only sure fire remedy for GAS is the lack of funds... this works every time for me.
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Old 04-14-2019   #18
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For me, GAS was largely cured by giving into it. Over the last ten to fifteen years, I've tried so many different camera systems -- lots of rangefinders, some medium format, different SLRs, from many manufacturers, some real old pre-war stuff up through the 1970's -- and a fun experience shooting film through all that different stuff, but I found myself always coming back to the same camera system as my fav.

By giving myself the permission to get the stuff, and then actually getting and using, I learned need wasn't there, and then want disappeared. As a postscript, I'll point out it didn't cost very much, because for every item I sold at a loss, there was another I sold at a profit. All used stuff of course.

But everyone's different. This was just my journey.
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Old 04-14-2019   #19
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I didn't have GAS because I was hoping to take better photos (though good lenses really help), but because I wanted to see what it was about all the other brands that had folks singing their praises.


I've done okay with most of the stuff I bought, even the ones that were inherently crap. It came down to a matter of how the camera controls worked, and if the lenses were any good. Lots of mixed results later, I did gravitate back to my favorite brand, and found some other favorites along the way.



My biggest thing is I don't get enough practice in to keep improving, and switching cameras constantly became a hindrance to that. I found myself concentrating more on how the camera was doing, then just enjoying taking photos. If I had stuck to one brand, and just built the system out, that would have been the best way to go, and still satisfy the GAS attacks.


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Old 04-14-2019   #20
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I think digital GAS has been common while sensors and firmware/software were continually improving off a low base. Now that most digital imaging platforms are "good enough" it's probably getting more like GAS of the film camera days. Some purchases (most?) are emotional and some based on need or curiosity.

A one camera, one lens project is a good respite from GAS, to concentrate on the picture-making. Browsing the RFF Classifieds is counterproductive!

But in answer to your original question: "yes".
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Old 04-14-2019   #21
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I am taking a friend to Bodie State Park (the “ghost town”) and since I have photographed there before in 4x5, 6x6 and 135 formats already I thought I’d do something different, so I bought a Harman Titan 4x5 pinhole camera for the trip. The low tech look should go well with the subject matter. This will be my one camera one “lens” 2 week road trip experiment.
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Old 04-15-2019   #22
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Heh.

When I carry one of the Leica's (CL or M-D), although I usually carry two or three lenses it ends up being mostly a one-one experience because I tend to just use one lens 90% of the time anyway.

I'm finding this notion of one-one works beautifully with the Polaroids, with the Fuji GS645S that I picked up recently, and is for sure piquing my interests in the new Leica Q2. So sometimes it's not a cure for GAS at all, just another avenue to filling the closet with more nice camera equipment...!

Now if I sell the WATE (which I hardly use enough to warrant its high value), I can probably afford the Q2 right out of pocket from that sale...

Life is complex...

G
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Old 04-15-2019   #23
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While lack of unlimited funds is certainly a factor..this is where I'm at now. I have limited time. So I limit my photography to a camera and a style.

Quote:
Originally Posted by davidnewtonguitars View Post
I have tried enough cameras to settle on one that seems to capture most of the pictures that appeal to me. It only makes sense to concentrate my limited photography time using that camera.
GAS lies in the interest in diverse types of cameras, and is a pursuit altogether seperate from photography. I find no shame in having a drawer full of cameras that never hold film.
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Old 04-16-2019   #24
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I've started trying a "shop at home" project. That is, when I get the urge to buy something, I look browse what I already have. I'm also cataloguing my equipment, so maybe I have a better understanding of what I have and need. No results to report yet.
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Old 04-16-2019   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mich rassena View Post
I'm also cataloguing my equipment, so maybe I have a better understanding of what I have and need. No results to report yet.
If you have to catalog your stuff to know what you have you probably have too much of it.
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Old 04-16-2019   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ptpdprinter View Post
If you have to catalog your stuff to know what you have you probably have too much of it.
You know you have too much if you can't even find what you know you have... !!

G
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Old 04-16-2019   #27
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GAS is totally independent from results. If I get a shot I like, well another bit of gear might make it even better. Seriously, I've run into a wall for gear, there isn't anything I particularly long for. Well there is that MF Fuji.............
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Old 04-16-2019   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ptpdprinter View Post
If you have to catalog your stuff to know what you have you probably have too much of it.
You're probably right. What I wrote sounded reasonable when I wrote it. One of the benefits of mirrorless is that you can adapter any lens; one of the drawbacks is that you can adapt every lens.

I just find gear to interesting and aesthetically pleasing to give it up. If practicality won out, I'd just buy a superzoom and be done with it. I don't see that happening.
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Old 04-16-2019   #29
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In answer to the original question, based on what I've seen over the last 42 years that I've been photographing, many people substitute the Acquisition of equipment for the diligence and hard work necessary to become proficient photographers. The former only requires the expenditure of money, which is relatively easy, while the latter requires many, many hours of hard work , which is not.
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Old 04-16-2019   #30
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If I ever make a good image I’ll let you know.
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Old 04-16-2019   #31
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Agreed!

When photography paid the bills, and I would talk shop with my friends, we'd usually talk about "How did you do it?" NOT "What did you do it with?"


Quote:
Originally Posted by rbsinto View Post
In answer to the original question, based on what I've seen over the last 42 years that I've been photographing, many people substitute the Acquisition of equipment for the diligence and hard work necessary to become proficient photographers. The former only requires the expenditure of money, which is relatively easy, while the latter requires many, many hours of hard work , which is not.
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Old 04-17-2019   #32
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I feel like this is more of a digital thing. Once you have a film camera and lens you like, your equipment will never be out of date again.
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Old 04-17-2019   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by olifaunt View Post
I feel like this is more of a digital thing. Once you have a film camera and lens you like, your equipment will never be out of date again.
That doesn't mean, at all, that you won't want more of it. Otherwise why do so many people on this forum have dozens of film cameras?

G
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Old 04-17-2019   #34
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Quote:
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That doesn't mean, at all, that you won't want more of it. Otherwise why do so many people on this forum have dozens of film cameras?
I don't know. Materialism? For film photography, once you have a camera/lens combo you like using and like the results of, you don't really need anything more.
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Old 04-17-2019   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by olifaunt View Post
I don't know. Materialism? For film photography, once you have a camera/lens combo you like using and like the results of, you don't really need anything more.
The same is even more true of digital cameras, of course. You don't even have to buy film ... you just have to charge the battery. Nothing says that you *have to* upgrade your digital camera, ya know.

I still use a lovely 2003 Olympus E-1 DSLR, which I acquired in 2007, that makes superb photographs. That hasn't stopped me from wanting, buying, and using a dozen or two other digital AND film cameras in the past decade.

Film vs digital, and having one excellent camera and lens, even making great photographs with what you have, are not the basis or the balm for GAS. Being satisfied with what you have is.

G
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Old 04-17-2019   #36
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I buy and sell old cameras for a living, so I own awful lot of cameras, and I wish I can have only one and simply use it. But there is always another one to test it, so I rarely finish a roll with one camera (usually around 3 for 36exp film). Don't get me wrong, I love my job, but it's annoying when instead of going home I try to choose which camera should I take to shoot... in next 12 hours.

What is really satisfying- I take a simple, cheap camera and take better pictures than bloody hipsters with leased Leicas.

Also- ergonomics over image quality, find a camera that suits you, good pictures will follow.
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Old 04-17-2019   #37
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running out of shelf space took care of my GAS.
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