The craft is modernized now more than ever with the emergence of digital cameras, the modern instax and of course smartphones. But all these gadgets are just commercial gimmicks and second-raters as compared to the compact, flexible and most powerful photography tool there is today, the DSLR.
The Digital Single Lens Reflex camera perhaps is the most well-known camera form there is today. You can ask someone to describe a camera and more or less the illustration will approximate the look of a DSLR. The camera is composed of several parts which can all be customized also and normally changed to fit certain photography circumstances. For example, if you wish to reach further zoom, you can switch lenses that has the ability to do so like, let’s say, a 300mm lens. If circumstances call you to capture wider areas, you can switch your lens to a wide angle one with a filter radius exceeding 58mm. Aside from switching lenses, the modern DSLR can also be a hub for equipment in which you can attach numerous things like microphones, battery grips, and perhaps an external flash. It is the ultimate toy, for someone who loves taking pictures, due to its endless customization capabilities and possibilities.
However, with great equipment comes, well… great responsibility as the famous saying goes.
Once you start falling deeper into photography, you get this irresistible urge to buy more equipment. A few years into the craft together with a few paychecks, you suddenly find yourself with six lenses and with three of those barely being used. Photography is an investment, partly because of the equipment you buy, and like any other investments, you wouldn’t want it to be rendered useless, more so destroyed.
Luckily, photojournalists, enthusiasts, professional photographers and more have developed and proven a decent amount of techniques to maintain your equipment by cleaning it.
Cleaning is something every owner should know for a plethora of reasons. Knowing how to clean your camera can certainly save you a lot of money, heck, it can even earn you some if you are willing to offer your knowledge. Aside from that, the skill is also good in developing a passion for the craft and the equipment itself, much like how people develop an attachment to their cars just by cleaning it regularly. Of course, if all these don’t mean much to you, learning how to clean your camera can always be a humbling educational experience that you can brag about somewhere along the way.
The article will not teach you to open your lens or your camera body; however, it will tell you to not be afraid to do these things. Here are a few tips for cleaning your camera equipment:
Know your equipment
First off in the list is to know your equipment. Before getting into the action of opening anything or wiping them, you have to know what you are dealing with. Specific equipment requires specific cleaning techniques and knowing these things are important if you don’t want anything bad to happen. Since it is your equipment, you must at least know what it does or why you bought it, right? You might have done your research before buying the equipment but it won’t hurt to do it again, but this time around you can focus on storage and cleaning the specific equipment.
This leads you to the next tip:
Do your own cleaning research
Part of cleaning your own equipment is, of course, learning how to do it on your own but not necessarily by tingling and blowing your way around the equipment during your free time. Research can be done in numerous ways like getting your equipment cleaned professionally by someone else but sticking around to immerse yourself in the process. You can ask a skilled cleaner about any techniques he has and try to further research if that specific method he has is proven or has a basis, at least, because the deeper you get into knowing these things, the sooner you see how unorthodox cleaning your equipment can get.
Research can entail knowing what could go wrong, how to fix it and how to avoid it. The next tip will dwell more on this.
Don’t be afraid to do it
Knowing that there is a slight chance of getting things wrong can be very intimidating. Once you open up your equipment and see all those little pieces and crackling noises, the intimidation will soon creep into you which is actually perfectly normal at first. But when left unchecked, this intimidation will cause you to lose your confidence, start to develop phobias and reconsider not taking on the journey you are about to take. Luckily, there are a lot of things that can help you overcome this bump.
Researching more and knowing almost everything that needs to be known will help you boost your confidence in this situation. As stated in the previous tip, before getting into anything else, research and know what you are doing. Do not be afraid to get your hands dirty because the passion and daring attitude can turn any beginner into a legend in due time.
Well, to boost your confidence further, know about the latest cleaning equipment and start putting them to good use as stated in the next tip.
Invest on quality cleaning equipment and make the most out of it
By now you should have realized that being a photographer isn’t as easy as simply capturing a photo. In this craft, there are a lot of things to learn and, if you really are serious, a lot more things to buy.
Consider buying and investing on quality cleaning equipment to add in to your gear. These gadgets and tools can really be helpful and, in some instance, very amusing to use. Simple tools like blowers and cleaning pens wouldn’t be much of a pain to be bought and can be very important for quick external cleaning. There are also a lot of camera cleaning kits out there which, with in the right hands, can do a lot of cleaning.
Photography is a beautiful thing. Capturing smiles, immortalizing moments are just some of the things which can draw people into the art. However, being a photographer is a different story from loving photography. Cleaning your equipment is just one of the many things required of a photographer, but with enough passion and love for your art, cleaning can just be a simple routine like brushing your teeth. The photographer is the reason why photography stands and photography is the reason why a photographer wakes up in the morning. At the end of the day, there’s only one last thing to do, and that is to do what it takes to be who you want to be in this industry.