I'm not precious about my gear. I treat it like a tool; a tool I use, I throw around and am easy with. I throw my camera in a bag, a bag without padding! I have no UV filters on most of my lenses. Despite this...despite this. I would love for my camera to be a part of my arm and be about as careful with it as I am my arm. Careful but take it everywhere :)
I have it on good authority that some people have some really good gear, in mint condition, in a box. But that gear might as well be dust in that box (or merde d'artista) for all it does. Mine has some dust in it, (and my technique too), but at least it gets used.
Occasionally, I rue my methods though. The thing is its ok to treat your gear like a tool. But I shouldn't have lapsed on the care and maintenance of my tools as I obviously did. See that smudge on the far right of the next image? I did that by being careless and I have paid for it in a lot of images. You can't fix everything in post. In fact, the things that count can never be fixed in post.
Sometimes, I'm just stupid, I know I'm being stupid and I'll pay the cost gladly. Like when I shot the next image through the windshield I knew there would be that reflection from inside the vehicle. I knew that, mentally to me, that was a 'record' shot. So, I was ok to write it off. But the smudges, they hurt. They make me angry. And I don't know when I'll ever be back in Namibia again
So, my advice is clean your gear.
(PS: Don't take record shots, make them all count! Digital is not an excuse for being sloppy and you never know when something lovely will happen and you'll miss it if you aren't prepared).
Copyright © Natasha Mhatre
If you're reading this without attribution to me anywhere other than at my blog Talking Pictures, its probably being plagiarized.