The Places to Shop: Where do you buy all of this stuff???
OK, I’m gonna take a short breath, and talk for a moment about the places to shop. Before I go into the gear stores, lets talk about the places that celebrate the still image on a regular basis.
Like ICP (International Center of Photography) . With a triple threat, AAA, exhibition hanging on the walls at any given time, a trip to the gift shop is mandatory.
A knowledgeable staff, stocked bookshelves and tables with the latest photo books, and a full selection of the classics, they also have the goodies you want for yourself and to give. Cameras, mugs, T-shirts, camera bags, jewelry, the unique, the special, the photo gifts you want to give and get. How about digital WeeGee prints made from the original negs?
I’ll admit it. Walked in there today, promised myself that no books could be bought (just packed away 50 boxes) And they pointed out an incredible concept book. In my hands it went.
Aperture has been at the photographic forefront for-EVER! From the classic magazine, that just went through a sweet renovation, to the books they publish, and the prints they sell, this is the place for the photo collector, looking to round out their collection.
Earlier this year they had Martin Parr in the house doing portraits of people all day, with a beach theme. About $400. per shoot, they did well, Martin did well, and it was a party. The folks that had their portrait done are very lucky to have a photo of them made by a master photographer.
Martin Parr reviewing photo session images with his subjects.
the gear side of town…
This year I had the pleasure of a first purchase from Hunts Photo up in the Boston are. Met the proprietor at PhotoPlus Expo and figured I’d give em a shot.
Knowledgeable, pleasant staff, they got me not only a great deal on an item, they made sure I had it in time for an assignment. And told about the other possible gear in that category, so I was best informed on the purchase. You’ve got to check em out.
The 800lb gorilla in the room is B&H Photo. How can you not love this place?
From the great staff, to the incredible selection, to the classic in-store delivery system (see video) these are the guys that all of the other places are measured against.
and even the used gear is updated 3 times a day on the site.
In LA? Well then you know it’s Samy’s all the way. 3 floors of solid goodness, plus a great rental dept. handling quality goods for the pro. If you have a shoot in LA, rent from them. They will also price match B&H.
And of course there is the Zon. Amazon.com
I always recommend getting your hands on the gear in person, as opposed to the virtual route.
Do the research, but if you can, get to the brick and mortar and feel the goods.
This is especially true for the cameras. This will be your primary tool and in your hands all the time.
Make sure it feels right.