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Chris-Gampat-The-Phoblographer-Leica-M9-at-Bryant-Park-18-of

Put a camera in front of a street photographer in a given situation, and they will use it based off of the camera and lens’s specific strengths and characteristics. Yes, gear is cool–and it can help you get specific and specialized images, but it isn’t the end all be all for street photography. The most important part of taking a picture is the photographer that composes, frames, and manipulates the images to get a specific look. However, street photographers for some odd reason love to chat about gear and how amazing it is.

Yes, gear is cool. But not many people can tell which image was taken with a Leica or a Fujifilm camera. The debating back and forth along with the gearhounding is unnecessary. If I were to tell you straight up what the best camera for street photography is I would probably say the iPhone and Nexus 5. Why? Because they’re always available, have entire scenes in focus, deliver images that can easily be manipulated in a whole number of ways, and there are people who shoot with them that make their living or supplementary income from them.

With this said, there are loads and loads of street photographers that don’t accept or validate the work of many mobile shooters.

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Lake Street Dive.

Lake Street Dive by Julius Motal.

Many concert photographers will tell you to use primes if you can. The concept just makes so much sense–they have a fast aperture that will help you out in very low lit situations, they take up less room in a crowded music pit, and you can eventually learn to think and see the world in that single focal length. To that end, it makes the picture taking process much more instinctual.

We’ve tested lots of lenses over time, and have found a handful from pretty much every camera system that work out solidly. But we’d be fools to say that it’s all about the gear here. In the end, it’s your ability to get the shot and predict movement that will award you better photos.

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Photo by Todd Owyoung

Photo by Todd Owyoung

All images in this story were used with permission from their respective owners

Music photography is the passion of so many–and it can be a very tough business to get into without the initiative to build connections. This is true of so many different types of photography genres, but it especially true when covering the music scene. It can make starting out really tough.

We talked to seven famous concert photographers at the top of their game about what they wish they knew when they first started out.

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AbramGoglanian_ThePhoblographer_Sigma20mm_Samples (10 of 13)

Landscape photography requires oceans of patience. There are so many things that can go wrong, but in some ways to can be amongst the simplest genres within photography. Good landscape photography has to do with getting the light that you want, commitment from yourself to scout the right locations, the gear that you need to get the photo in your head, and the exact amount of post-production work. When getting started, you can sometimes be intimidated or not know where to look.

Here’s our guide to shooting better landscapes.

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Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Zeiss Rokinon Sigma 85mm f1.4 three way comparison (2 of 3)ISO 4001-125 sec at f - 3.5

Your lenses are much more important than your camera is. They do a big job of helping to determine what kind of image quality comes out of the camera. And in the same way that you’d treat your camera with lots of care, you should be treating your lenses even better. You know some of the basics already–or at least you think you do.

To get the most from your lenses, you’ll need to understand how they work.

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Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Fujifilm 56mm f1.2 first impressions product photos (6 of 7)ISO 8001-60 sec at f - 2.8

We’ve spent long, countless hours reviewing lots of photo gear this year. And we’ve spent time compiling lists of the best gear. Yes, we know that it’s the photographer who ultimately creates the images, and we’ve had that in mind the entire time that we wrote this list. There’s something for everyone here: the pro, the enthusiast, the semi-pro and the beginner in our roundup of the best photo gear.

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