Break Bad Habits, Not Your Camera

by Eric on

Dont do this with your neckstrap

Not all bad habits affect your health; some bad habits affect the health of your camera. Broken equipment that seemingly stopped working for no good reason is all too often the result of these bad habits. Upon a close inspection physical damage usually becomes apparent. The major problem is users aren’t usually even aware that they posses bad habits and are genuinely surprised by the physical damage. All of us are guilty of these habits from time to time, and that is just fine; keep reading to recognize and break your bad habits.

The camera strap is basically a seatbelt for your camera; it keeps it alive. Just like a seatbelt, there are many people who use it improperly, or not at all. If you value the life of your equipment, you should use it correctly every time. One example of not using a strap properly is tying it on instead of using the connectors (pictured above). This is worse than not using a strap at all; it can’t be relied on if it’s not there. Another habit related to the strap is allowing it drape and dangle over edges when set down. All it takes is a small tug by any passerby and your camera will come crashing down.

The neck or wrist strap allows us to take our minds off of our camera’s well being from time to time so that we can use our hands to do something else. Mostly, it doesn’t end badly when equipment flops around on its cord while focus goes to something else. Strangely enough, this is probably the most prolific and formidable bad habit. This is because things will always come up and grab your attention away from your equipment; leaving you completely unaware of how close your camera came to being smashed, bashed or splashed. There are, however, precautions you can take that will help to keep your equipment a little safer while your attention is needed elsewhere. Many people find or develop gear that is a direct preventive intervention. One example is a strap designed to make your camera cling closely to you and still allows for convenient and quick shooting. The cheaper route is to create habits that safeguard like always having your camera around your neck/wrist AND in hand; then when you need both hands put the camera away in your case where it will be the safest anyhow.

Sticking things where they don’t belong is one of those habits that most people are both aware and ashamed of, but do anyway. Storing equipment in places that they are not meant to go generally provides little to no protection and puts it in even greater danger from damage. For instance, putting an SLR lens in a pocket is a recipe for disaster. If it becomes habitual, you are very likely to get a large piece of lint inside sooner or later. How many times have you opened your bag to find one or more caps have fallen off? Unlike a little dust in the lens, lint particulates can affect your image quality as well as damage the inner working mechanics of the lens. Lastly, don’t place camera equipment inside a purse or bag that carries other, potentially damaging things. Items like perfume, keys, makeup, or pens can cause serious damage if jostled. Respect your camera, and it will reward you with beautiful clear pictures for a long time. If not, thanks for the business!  😉


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