I've always been somewhat of a gear nut. Not that I always thought I needed the best to be the best, but just that I really liked versatility in my equipment. Gear lust is something that every photographer deals with at some point or another, so I figured I would share a few details of what I have and have not utilized to its best ability.
I feel like I'm at the point right now that I could make use of just about any lens, so I am starting to focus on what I use more of and how I can utilize them better to improve my overall photography.
The first piece of gear that I want to talk about in this series is my sigma 70-200mm 2.8 Lens. I was a year in to my photography career when I was really itching to get a big aperture zoom. All the big boys swore by them, so I figured that I needed one too. Don't get me wrong it's a wonderful lens, with the fast 2.8 aperture and heavy build, it made my kit zoom look like a toilet paper roll and a couple of magnifying glasses taped together. I was able to find one used and didn't have to drop a lot of money on it, and it made a wonderful addition to my wedding photography bag.
Fast forward to now and you will find I've come to realize that this might not be the best lens for my use. It was a little soft in focus at both of the hard stops in this range, but I still had learned how to make a good photo with this lens. I primarily used this lens for weddings, but now I shoot with all primes. My compositions have for sure improved since I started "zooming" with my feet. So I decided to sell it.
See the advantage of selling a used lens that you bought used is that you can pretty much getting most of your money back. Lenses retain their value very well and even models such as this which are a few years old still can create a lot of interest. I'm already to put it on craigslist or eBay but I'm running into one problem: i'm scared to sell it. What if I need it later on down the road? What if I start to miss it, and I don't have it? These and many other questions are what have been plaguing me over the last few days, and I haven't come to a direct conclusion so I figured I would weigh out the pros and cons
It's not in the way we're taking up too much space
I still have confidence that I can take great pictures with it
It is a very versatile zoom range
The lens is getting a little old and is starting to lose value
I don't ever use it
If I want to sell it and need it again down the road, I could find the same model for less money.
It could help fund an upcoming project that is much more important to me
To me it seems that the advantages outweigh the risks and that is why I have decided to sell it. My biggest piece of advice to you would be look at what you have and what you are doing. In my honest opinion, money is better spent on other things than one big piece of gear that could "potentially" increase the quality of your work.
My advice would be to invest in a couple of primes like a 50 and 85. This would put you under half the price of a used 70-200 and provide you with great quality and help you grow your compositional skills quicker and more efficiently.
My camera bag has changed a lot over the years, but I consistently have a wide angle, Standard and telephoto lens. Very rarely do I ever need or use anything other than those. The 70-200 is a bit of a specialty lens in my opinion and if it fits your needs that's wonderful, but don't waste your money if you have to hunt for a reason to use it.
Thanks for reading and stay tuned for more posts like these!