10 Terrific Reasons To Always Carry A Camera
Carry a camera with you always. Most of us do anyway, because most of us have camera phones, and we don’t go far without those.
For many people their camera phone is their camera of choice. There are even some professional photographers who use them much of the time.
When phones and cameras were combined originally, it seemed to be a gimmick. The cameras were basic and no match for the cameras of the day.
Like all technology they evolved, and developed into serious cameras. Some are now rivalling the very best cameras.
I know it’s personal but I don’t like them much. Give me an old fashioned, but digital, camera any day. We all have our preferences.
I don’t think anyone should carry a camera with a selection of lenses everywhere they go. Simply because that’s so cumbersome.
Instead carry a small, light camera that will fit easily in a pocket. A simple point and shoot camera is fine.
Like most things it’s a personal choice. For photographers though it’s a good idea to carry a camera everywhere.
Whether it’s a walk through a city or a visit to rural areas, don’t go without a camera. There are good reasons why you should do so.
Why I don’t like smart phones for photography
I mentioned above that I don’t like smart phones for taking photos with. Let me give a little explanation.
Firstly smart phones are capable of taking photos as good as most cameras.
The first thing I don’t like is how you take the photo. You tap a button/icon on the screen. This is on the back of the phone when it’s being used as a camera.
I know you can reverse the camera to take a selfie, without turning the phone around. You still have to tap the button on the screen.
I like the button on the front of the camera, like most regular cameras.
It’s also very easy to cover the lens with your left hand as you shoot. When you get used to it I know it doesn’t often happen.
Thirdly I don’t like the way you have to hold the phone, when taking a photo. You have to hold it gently on the edge and avoid any buttons that are placed there.
I know I’m being fussy, but I like the ways cameras work, and I don’t like smart phones.
Anyway to get back on topic.
Carry a camera to never miss a shot
You never know when you’re going to see a possible shot. If you don’t always carry a camera, you may miss it, simple as that.
Off course it does depend on what the possible photo is. If it’s a landscape for instance, you can come back to photograph it sometime later.
If you don’t have a camera of some sort, you may still remember that landscape, and go back again.
Take a shot of it and you’ll remember it when you look back at the photo. There’s no point in taking photographs if you never look back at them.
You can have a computer file with such images and refer to it often. Keep a note with of where of where they are.
What if the image you missed is of something that only happens once. It could be a rare bird, or animal that you may never see again.
Perhaps you like to photograph cars. You could encounter a rare vintage car that you rarely see, and would love to have a photograph of.
Whatever they are, there are many unique things that happen. If you’re in the habit of always carrying a camera, you won’t miss them when they occur.
Carry a camera to practice as much as possible
There’s an old saying that I’m sure you heard that goes; “practice makes perfect”. It’s true, the more you practice something, the better you get at it.
There are rules and theories about everything you can do. You can learn them all. However you’ll only get good at doing things, by practicing them as often as you can.
Getting into the habit of carrying a camera, and using it as often as possible, will improve your photography.
it’s pointless knowing the rule of thirds if you never take a photograph. Always carry a camera and use it as much as possible.
Every photograph you take doesn’t have to be a masterpiece. The more you take, the more good ones you take.
It’s also true that you can learn from making mistakes. Again if you take more photographs, you’ll learn faster what not to do.
If you learn a new technique, and don’t practice it, you can easily forget it again.
And the more photos you take, in all probability, a bigger percentage of them will be good. And if you always carry a camera, you can improve faster.
Get into the habit of seeing possible photos in more situations
There is nothing that can’t be photographed. A fallen leaf, a puddle, or a weed in a flower bed, may not seem like great subjects. But they can be, and they’ll teach you to regard everything as a possible subject.
Get into the habit of seeing everything as a possible photograph. Always carry a camera, get a shot, and turn it into an actual photograph.
Use these common everyday items to teach yourself new skills. Like getting into the habit of zooming in and filling the frame with subjects.
If you see a stone on the side of the road, zoom in make it the obvious subject. Taking a wide shot can result in a photo of nothing in particular.
Get that stone to occupy most of the photo, and it’s obviously an image of a stone.
It may not be an inspiring photo, but when you see that rare bird, you’ll zoom in. The habit will be formed, and you’ll take better advantage when the opportunity occurs.
To take a snapshot of something you might come back to later
When it comes to choosing a camera to carry with you all the time, I prefer something compact. A camera phone is great, or a small point and shoot. I bring a point and shoot.
You can slip these into your pocket and have them handy when needed. I have a Canon point and shoot that I bought ten years ago. It’s a 12mp camera that’s perfect for this.
I use it a little like a notebook. Take a quick snap, like writing a note. If it’s something you want a better photo of, come back later with a DSLR.
Off course you may never come back for the definitive photograph, but so what. You have a photograph of whatever it was anyway.
So much of what we do are habits. Carrying a camera and using it often can become one. For a photographer, that’s a very good habit.
Don’t miss unusual weather conditions, always carry a camera
Weather is unpredictable. It can change and turn extreme. The big events can be forecast but you often get spontaneous and spectacular mini events.
In Ireland we get very few tornados, and those we get are tiny. We do see film of the real thing, and they really are enormous.
While storms are more frequent here, again they wouldn’t rank by international standards. They can still provide the chance of dramatic images.
Unusual weather doesn’t have to be as extreme as that to make an interesting photograph.
A downpour that causes a sudden flash flood will do. The rain may only last a few minutes and the flood might be gone in half an hour. It can yield a good photo opportunity for a short time. Not long enough to fetch a camera, except from your pocket.
Occasionally it’s possible to get a snow or hail shower in summer. A photograph of a deciduous tree in full bloom surrounded by snow would be novel. You won’t have long to take it, because it’s likely to melt fast.
Some very dark clouds can produce a dramatic photo. While these are more frequent, if you don’t have a camera when they do, they won’t wait while you get one.
It’s never nice to be left wondering; “What if?”. However it is nice to be able to say; “Come here and look at this”.
It is possible to meet famous people
You don’t expect to meet famous people in ordinary day to day situations. But it can happen. Even the most famous do ordinary things as well.
It’s possible to meet famous musicians, actors, T V personalities, sports stars, among others. If it happens somewhere crowded, you might only get a glimpse.
With a camera you can get a passing shot and at least you’ll know it was real. People you show it to might prefer to think you saved it from the internet. Forget them, you’ll know.
If you got the shot close to home, and there’s an obvious landmark included, that’ll be better.
However you could be lucky and you might meet someone famous in a quiet place. There just might be the chance of getting a photo of them, or with them. That’s not a good time to be without a camera.
I know you can always tell people you met such a person. They might or might not believe you, but produce the photo, and leave no doubt.
That selfie with whoever might impress people for years. Just imagine how impressive a social media avatar it would make.
Most people are likely to meet someone famous sometime in their life. Carry a camera, today might be the day.
Carry a camera in case you encounter a spontaneous event
All sudden or spontaneous events are not weather related. Other things happen on the spur of the moment also.
While you may expect that something unusual or spectacular can happen in a city, they also happen in rural areas.
When something unexpected happens, that is a genuine great photo opportunity, you want to have a camera.
It may make a good story, but it would make an even better photograph. Stories aren’t always believed, photographs usually are.
Off course there are conspiracy theorists everywhere, who won’t believe anything plausible. Only worry about them if they do believe you.
As a photographer, you will probably amass thousands of photographs through the years. It would be horrible to look back and remember the one you could have gotten more than any you did.
If you have an accident, get a photo
Sometimes people have accidents, and by their nature, they’re never planned. If they were they’d just be stupid incidents.
If you have an accident where you get injured, it’s unlikely you’ll be able to photograph it. Someone else might, if they carry a camera, and you may get their photo, if you need to.
You might witness someone else being injured in an accident. They might need a photo for legal reasons, and maybe you could supply it.
That may not be a nice scenario to be involved in, but it might really help another person. And that one does happen everyday, and you may well witness it sometime.
Do you own and drive a car? That can increase your chance of being involved in an accident. Automobile accidents happen regularly, and to all sorts of people.
Sometimes they can be serious and result in bad injuries and unfortunately death. Thankfully most just involve some damage to the vehicle.
In this instance you should be able to take a photo, if you were involved. If you’re not carrying a camera though, you won’t get one.
Mind you in this case a dash cam is probably a better option to record what happened. However it won’t get a photo of a battered rear.
Provided you didn’t cause the accident, and you’re making an insurance claim, a photograph will be helpful.
You might come across something newsworthy
Another possibility is that you could encounter a genuine newsworthy event. It might happen somewhere quiet, and you might have the only photo.
Without a photograph it might never make a news story. However a dramatic photo offered to a news agency, and then it becomes news.
If you’re trying to sell photographs for commercial reasons, only ones from a serious camera will be acceptable’
For news, if the photo is clear, and sharp, and unique, the camera won’t matter. If you get it on video, even better.
How often have you seen video as news where it’s shot on a smartphone, held vertically? Probably often.
I wouldn’t have great hopes of selling a vertical video for normal commercial use. They’re often used as TV news items.
There must be thousands of these videos shot by people who just happened to be there when something happened.
Social media has brought a huge increase in news. Get the video, put it online, and a news agency can find it. Before social media, it might never be regarded as a worthwhile newsworthy item.
If this did happen to you, only upload a little of the clip. Add a note saying you have more and better footage. If a new agency wants it, don’t make it too easy for them.
Carry a camera to give street photography a go
This one is obvious. If you want to practice street photography, you must carry a camera.
You can decide that you’re going to spend today on the street shooting. For this you’re going to bring a camera.
During the day you will shoot dozens, perhaps hundreds of photographs. There may not be one that has the wow factor though.
On another day you might be on the same street, but for some business or other reason. It may not be an occasion where you expected to need a camera.
That might be the time that a special photo opportunity presents itself. It might be your one that got away.
Then again it may not. Carry a camera and take a photo anyway. It’s only going to delay you for a minute or two, but it will be developing a good habit.
Always carry a camera
Get into the habit of always carrying a camera. Preferably ones that’s small, light, and will fit easily in a pocket.
Be ready to whip it out and take a photograph in an instant. Some photo opportunities don’t wait around for long.
If you’re happier to carry a DSLR around your neck, then do that. Just bring one light lens though, a kit lens would be just right.
The point is to have a camera when you need one, and use it as often as possible.