Both spiritually and by natural inclination, I'm an animist. I build connections, sometimes deep ones, to objects that I interact with on a daily basis. As a rule, this is simply a facet of my identity; something that enriches my own personal experience of the world around me.
Until a day like today, when I find myself saying goodbye to an object that has played an important role in my life.
The photo I'm featuring today is the first I've shown out of my new (to me) camera. I was really just testing to make sure everything was working correctly. But I got lucky and snapped a shot I'm not embarrassed to show. It's that "new camera" part that has me feeling more than a touch sad.
I've written on PTAS before about my long history with photography, and about the way that changing to a lightweight camera system had a dramatic impact on my ability to pursue the art with gusto.
Nearly everything you can find on my mainstream photography website has been shot in the eighteen months since I bought an Olympus mirror-less system camera, and I've never been so proud of what I've accomplished in terms of evolution and quality of work (though I still have miles to go). Before that little camera came along, I'd all but given up on my photographic dreams, and now I'm in a position of where I'm starting to make some sales and I can see a path forward in the work.
Unfortunately, while I won't bore you with the technical details, for much of the photography I'm doing these days, that little Olympus, and in fact the whole Micro Four-Thirds system, can't meet a number of my needs. When I bought it, it was the best compromise in terms of weight, AF performance, and lens ecosystem, although I had my reservations even then. I don't regret my purchase for a moment but those reservations have been born out, and my photography has evolved to where it's no longer a suitable primary camera.
I'm not trying to knock my beloved OMD-EM5, for ninety percent of shooters I think it'd be an awesome tool, but it's not suited to some of the directions I'm going. I had a chance today to buy a new camera at a used price on a different system only recently released, that better meets my needs (including weight) and I took it.
But doing so drained our finances a good bit. There's no way I can move forward without selling my beloved Olympus, and it's making me incredibly sad. I feel like I'm dumping a partner without whom I wouldn't find myself in the position I'm in.
We're not ready to part ways quite yet. I'm going to sell off a couple of my pro lenses to help cover the cost of the new machine, while keeping the camera around as a spare until I can find it a good home where it will get used, rather than just collecting dust. I feel like I owe it that at least.
I know that on some level that's more than a bit crazy. My friend and colleague, Jenny from NearlyCandy Photography, took pains to remind me that
It's just a box with a hole in it, and it doesn't like you back
I know in my head that she's right. But as pleased as I am about this new step in my work, my heart breaks just a little bit at moving on.