A Minimalist Photographer
It doesn't bother me as much anymore, but when I used to show up with my leather-handled basket (farmer's market style) filled with 2 camera bodies, 3 lenses, 2 extra batteries, a charger, a speedlight, and a slew of memory cards, the response received would cause me panic. 'Wow, a minimalist!" a DJ said to me at one of my first weddings, and I just smiled back, not knowing any different. What more could I need? How's that saying go? Ignorance is bliss.
A few years later, I get it. I could pack the back of my car with equipment to photograph a wedding: Lights and umbrellas, and suitcases full of lenses, and my laptop, and all kinds of camera bodies including film, instant, and video... the list goes on and on. The amount of stuff to allow for your creativity in photography is amazing. The sky truly is the limit on what we can do, and I've rented more equipment than I care to admit, in order to fly high in that wedding photography sky. The thing is, I rarely, if ever, use what I rent. Ends up that DJ was right: I am a minimalist.
Here's the deal: there are as many ways to photograph a wedding as there are wedding photographers. No way is better than any other way, and there is room for all of us. I have seen some incredible wedding day photo galleries and when I look at the equipment details I'm in awe. Seriously, my heart starts to beat a little faster, and my mind immediately goes into overdrive. What could I do if I used that lens too? And so, I rent the extra stuff, and pack it in extra bags, and haul it to the wedding, and there it sits. Right next to my basket. It's not that I'm not interested in learning about, and trying out, new things. In fact it's so not that. Continuing to learn is pretty much the only way I got where I am today. What it is, is that I know what I need to photograph a wedding day, and for me it's not equipment-heavy. 2 camera bodies, 3 lenses, 2 extra batteries, a charger, 2 speedlights (I've added a backup), and a slew of memory cards... and, it all fits in my basket.