I absolutely love gear. From cameras and computers to lights and lenses, I am transfixed by the unlimited options available for consumers and professionals alike. My good friend Aaron Hockley, the Tech Photo Guy, recently shared a rant about gear in his fantastic email newsletter. He advocated the need for both gear and skill to create masterful work. In concert with Aaron, I’m going to talk about why you need quality equipment and what that means for your craft and budget. I’m also going to share why you need to understand the stories you tell yourself about these marvelous machines and what marketers are trying to sell you.

Eight ways that gear and skill move you forward instead of limiting stories holding you back:

  1. Let the industry you want to work in set the bar.
  2. Let your vision for your work guide your gear selections as you lessen the gap between your means and the expectations of the industry.
  3. I often advocate to not go into debt for equipment, but the more sophisticated work becomes, the higher the expectations our customers will have. Can you meet those expectations? Equipment is a fundamental need of creativity. If you can barely price your work to pay your bills, you’ll never be able to get the equipment that will transform your work.
  4. Build a baseline professional kit by asking for recommendations, renting, and exploring your options.
  5. Rent everything else.
  6. Hire specialized professionals.
  7. Equipment and software is gear, but so are people.
  8. Tell yourself better stories about what is possible.

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