I don't know about you, but when I was first starting out I thought I needed a ton of expensive camera gear to be a good photographer. I also thought to be considered a "professional" I had to have the latest camera body and a bag full of lenses. Not to mention an expensive camera bag at that!
This was a major point of stress for me as we were on a very tight budget seven years ago. The only reason we had a DSLR was because we used our tax return money for it. But I wanted to make this business work so bad! So bad! So I decided to forge ahead with my Canon 50D and a 50mm 1.4 lens.
I grew my business from nothing to a regular business with that gear alone. No other lenses. I made a pact to myself that I would not spend money on my business that I didn't make from my business.
Of course, I have since upgraded but I still remain very minimal with my gear. I have a Canon 5D mark iv, a 35 mm 1.4, a 50mm 1.2, and a 135 mm 2.0. I also have a macro (non L) lens that I bought used.
I use a combo of the 35 and 135 for family sessions and occasionally bring out the 50.
I use the 35 almost exclusively for newborn sessions. I bring out the macro lens for about 5 minutes of each shoot.
I use the 50 exclusively for school shoots.
Everyone asks me when I plan to upgrade to the Mark IV. At this point I have no plans to. My miii works just fine and I have no need to drop nearly 4K just to have the latest gear. I will need a real reason to do that.
I think starting my journey with a basic body and one lens made me a better photographer. It forced me to get creative in tight spaces (the 50D is a crop censor) and it inspired me to learn how to be *really* good with minimal gear rather than relying on lenses for effect or quality.
If you are ready to upgrade, I recommend renting first. You may not love a lens that someone else is raving about. It really is a personal preference.
So don't let other peoples massive gear stashes pressure you. The gear is nice, but it's the artist behind the lens that makes the photograph.
P.S. I have a list on Amazon with all of my gear! Click the button below to check it out.