I only need two lenses and so do you.
Gear is addictive. Really addictive.
I’ve spent more money than I’d like to admit on camera gear over the years. Just for your understanding, this is a quick, rough list of what I’ve owned over the past 5 years:
50mm 1.8 and 1.4
100mm Macro 2.8
70-200 f4 and f2.8
20mm 1.8 (Sony)
This list is just off the top of my head bashed out in about 45 seconds. Don’t make me sit and think through every camera I’ve had over the years… 😅
Either way, after feeling flooded with camera gear for the last 12 months and now downsizing my kit to the ZVE1, 20mm 1.8 and the 24-70 2.8, I feel so much more at peace and I have a lot more clarity when I’m shooting, let me explain.
When I would go out to shoot, I’d pack my R5C, the cable and battery setup for it, the 28-70, 70-200, 50mm, the 16mm and don’t even mention changing all the ND filters from lens to lens with step down rings… 👀
This sounds amazing and, it was for the first few months of owning everything. Slowly but surely, however, things started to change. I was spending so much time changing lenses, missing shots due to that, looking at a scene and getting a little overwhelmed with what lens to use and overall coming home with fewer shots and feeling like I missed out. Even though I had the gear of my dreams, it was making my creative process a pain in the ass.
So after a year of shooting with this setup and developing some concerning back pain from hiking, travelling and shooting with the heaviest setup I’ve ever had, I sold it all. You’ll know from one of my previous emails this isn’t the only reason I switched to Sony but it sure was a factor.
So now you understand my point of view, let’s talk about these 2 lenses. Regardless of whether you’re shooting photos or video, I am a firm believer in this, and here is why -
Your first lens - Needs to be a versatile zoom lens or prime focal length. the 16-35mm, 24-70mm, 70-200, 24mm prime, 35mm prime or whatever your main, number one lens for what you’re shooting is. Everyone will have a different main lens here and it all depends on what you are shooting the most but, hopefully, you get the idea here. Make sure that your first lens serves you perfectly. If you’re struggling to work out what that is, don’t make the same mistake I made by owning every lens before finding out. Rent them if need be 😅
Your second lens - Something fun, usually a prime. The 50mm, 85mm, 135mm, 16mm, 20mm, or hell, even the 400mm prime that sells for like $16k 💀
The idea here is to make sure you have something to add flair to your shots.
Your versatile lens should be the one that gets the serious shots, and the main deliverables, carries the most weight and gets what you need done. Your second lens should be your artistic lens. The one that adds a little spice to your shots and adds a different perspective compared to something safer. Remember you've got to have fun while you're shooting and your second lens should be the one that gives you that rush!
For me, my 24-70 gets me 90% of my shots. It’s incredibly versatile and can serve me well in nearly any situation (aside from wildlife photography) My 20mm on the other hand serves as my vlogging, unique angle, low aperture prime lens. This allows me to get creative and unlock things that my 24-70 can’t.
When I go out to shoot now, I hardly change lenses from my 24-70 and I just focus on getting my shots. I’m also getting more shots, having more fun and coming home without the back pain which is an INCREDIBLE feeling.
Look, if you’re just starting out on this journey or if you’re a little strapped for cash to spend on camera gear. This email should give you a lot of peace of mind. You don’t need to spend a lot of money on 17 different lenses, all you need are 2 lenses that serve you well.
A few examples for you would be -
10-18mm and the 50mm 1.8 for crop sensor setups
24-105mm f4 and the 135mm 1.8 for full frame setups
18-55mm and the 85mm 1.8 for crop setups
16-35mm and the 85mm 1.8 for full frame setups
Alright, that’s going to do me for this week. Thanks for tuning in again this week. I think slowly but surely this is becoming my favourite way to communicate with you guys. Anyways, I’ll catch you in the next one, peace ✌️