Once again, what is rule number one?

Back bay hike at Morro Bay, CA

Back bay hike at Morro Bay, CA

Almost every book and blog I read has a set of rules and/or commandments for the aspiring photographer.  I find most of them helpful, but also forgettable.  My favorite set comes from the well known photographer, John Shaw.  However, all of them forget to mention the most important rule of all – ALWAYS CARRY A CAMERA!

Through a screen from our table at  Leilani's in Kaanapali,Maui

Through a screen from our table at Leilani’s in Kaanapali, Maui

And I don’t mean a camera phone.  I mean a real camera.  I carry my Canon G15 with me every where I go.  It is always in my car in case I see anything interesting.  I also carry it with me on all of our walks and hikes, and even when we are shopping.

The cover at Fashion Show Las Vegas, NV

The large outdoor cover at Fashion Show Mall, Las Vegas, NV

There are times when I will carry my little camera for hours and not take any photos, but I have given myself the opportunity.

Walking  down the street in Ouray,CO

Walking down the street in Ouray,CO

I can hear the complaints now – it’s too hard to carry a camera all the time.  My camera phone is good enough for snap shots.  I only post stuff on-line, so I really don’t need a real camera.  Maybe…

Walking down the street in Socorro, NM

Walking down the street in Socorro, NM

The problem is you have self-limited your options when you do not have a camera.  Let’s do a quick mini-max analysis.  What is best thing and worst thing that can happen when you carry a camera?

Fun sign in old town Las Cruces, NM

Fun sign in old town Las Cruces, NM

Best – you will make an outstanding or amazing photograph with the right exposure, focal length, and size that you can print or post.  You may be able to capture a dramatic or historical moment that no one else can.  You will create an important memory of your children, family, or life.  The file will be big enough to crop and process well.

Walking through a car show in Old Town, San Diego, we ran into a cute dog named Brewster

Walking through a car show in Old Town, San Diego, we ran into a cute dog named Brewster

Worst – you might lose your camera.  It is inconvenient to carry a camera.  It’s just one more thing to worry about.  My cell phone camera is good enough because I never print anything anyway.

Mary yelled, "stop the car" on the Silverado Road in Napa, CA to get this shot in the rain

Mary yelled, “stop the car” on the Silverado Trail in Napa, CA to get this shot in the rain

I’m pretty sure more good things will happen when you carry a camera than when you don’t.

Finally, you have to ask yourself this question, “are you a photographer or not?”  If you answer that you ARE a photographer, then shouldn’t you have a camera in your hands almost all of the time?  It does not have to be a big DSLR, but it should be a decent point and shoot that is convenient, small, yet powerful enough to make a good image in the field quickly.

I got Mary while scouting the Pheiffer Beach Arch in Big Sur, during a rain storm

I got Mary while scouting the Pheiffer Beach Arch in Big Sur, during a rain storm

To see more of our photographs, please go to www.pamphotography.com.

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3 thoughts on “Once again, what is rule number one?

  1. I used to carry a G12 to carry when I don’t have my big camera, but really didn’t like the result. Now I have a canon 100d, the smallest DSLR, and it is better, but really bad in low light/high iso. Otherwise I agree, I need an even smaller and better carry allways-camera.

  2. Pingback: Sign, Sign, Everywhere a Sign | pamphotography

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