If you follow me on social media (@arielmartinezjr), you probably have already noticed that I love posting my camera gear. Im definitely a gear fanatic. From cameras and lighting down to memory cards and batteries. Im constantly on the lookout for the latest film tech. Quite often you’ll find me working with the RED Epic Dragon on certain projects and other times I’ll use the Sony a7s2. So I could not help but notice some of the comments that I receive on my posts when people see the combinations that I choose to use with the RED camera. For some reason it rubs them the wrong way when I combine Canon or Rokinon lenses ($400-$1,200) with the RED Epic Dragon camera ($35,000). I won’t be sharing those comments with you here because that is not what I am here to do. I would never trash anyone for stating their opinions. If you want to go about your work with a certain mindset that is absolutely your right to do so. If you work by “laws” and “guidelines” that you would never dare to break, I guess one could do nothing but respect your decision. With that being said, I simply want to share my opinion on this matter.
Creativity has no price. If you think that having the most expensive equipment is really what takes your work to the next level, you’re already putting limits on yourself. “If I had that camera I would be a better filmmaker”. Granted, better lenses do give you a cleaner and shaper image, but when have you ever heard a critic say “no that image is not sharp enough, this film is no good”. In my opinion, $10,000 cinema glass is beautiful, however way too overpriced for what I need. I cannot justify that price tag for a slightly sharper image. Same concept goes for audio and lighting. I’ve seen professional hollywood DP’s working on professional movie sets using $10 clamp lights. Your work should not be determined by your gear. Some people can put out better work shot on a canon rebel camera then what others can do with a RED or Alexa.
BUYNG MY EQUIPMENT
I definitely cannot tell you how to buy your gear. Only you would know that. However, there are several ways that I go about purchasing my equipment. Sometimes they're impulse buys where I simply buy a piece of gear that I am just drooling over but don't really need it at the time. I don't do too many of these. An example of this would be the DJI Osmos. I've been loving all over it since it was released. The only reason I haven't gone ahead and purchased it yet is because lately being been buying other equipment that I have actually been needing for coming projects. But if it had not been for those purchases, you would have been seeing me all over your feeds playing with that delicious piece of goodness. On the other hand, when I absolutely need something for my projects, I then do my research thoroughly before buying. For example, I needed a good lens to use with my Sony a6300. After careful research, I concluded that instead of buying a sony lens, I just went ahead and got the Metabones Speed Booster Ultra. What this did was allow me to use many of my currently EF mount lenses on the a6300. Not only that, I was able to increase the functionally of those lenses and the camera along with it. The adaptor alone cost about $700, but for what I was able to get from it, it was well worth the price. Remember, these are just my methods on how I decide what to buy next.
What I am basically trying to say is to stop concerning yourselves so much about the gear you have or don't have. At the end of the day, your clients will not be judging your working by the gear that you use, but by the final product. This is not to say to only maintain yourselves by using DIY and low-cost equipment. That is not what I am saying at all. It’s quite the opposite, If you have the budget for it, you should definitely upgrade to the next piece of gear that your work requires. I am just saying get your mindset fixed on how you can make great work with what you have in front of you. On that note, I hope this was able to help you all on this matter. Remember, your work is your work no matter what it was shot with. I love to hear about those passionate filmmakers that continue to hustle not matter what they’re using to make their dreams come true. Keep pushing forward guys!