5 Reasons Why It’s Good To Always Carry A Camera

Last week I was reminded no less that 5 times why it’s important to carry a camera with you everywhere you go. I’d never have been able to grab a snap of any of these things had I not been packin’ heat (G9, iPhone, D3, whatever)…

1. The Google Earth 3D, street level, photo recorder thingie was mapping the area and I caught it. Very cool, despite the fact that fellow drivers were freaking out, as if it was about to launch a rocket or something. Have you seen this thing in your neighborhood?:

Reasons 2 – 5 after the jump. Click the ‘continue reading’ link below …

2. The giant, new, not-seen-before-by-me Airbus 380, double decker plane (I know, I’m a nerd who travels too much – I get excited about such things). Snagged this shot from the airport lounge:

3. Grabbing a sunset you don’t see everyday (no photoshop enhancement – real colors). I’m got a preference for aisles myself, but occasionally the window seat on the old Boeing jet is good for something:

4. Seeing the new Mini Cooper wagon for the first time. (And it’s no surprise to me that it’s owned by the coolest vodka brand in the world, 42 Below:)

5. And finally, hows about catching yours truly in the act of celebrating his BIRTHDAY with a little shredding of the dance floor head-over-heels tripping and falling. Like any good second assistant with a point-and-shoot, Mario caught me upside-down in action only a half second after my forehead caught the corner of the table (left). Model Lindsey was kind enough to grab the follow-up shot (right) after our resident EMT, Stephan, cleaned up my gushing forehead. Doh!

While the nuts and bolts of this post are tongue-in-cheek, the gist not. There’s unquestionably something wonderful about carrying a camera with you everywhere you go. Just like a writer carries a notepad, you should carry a camera. Consider trying it for a week. Seriously. You’ll begin to see more pictures than you’d ever have dreamed.

Whether they’re quirky and (un)lucky moments like these, or the unique and beautiful moments you see in books, magazines, and fine art everywhere, you’ll suddenly find yourself in a position to grab them.

48 Responses to 5 Reasons Why It’s Good To Always Carry A Camera

  1. SalsaFresca July 23, 2008 at 12:26 am #

    Happy Birthday Chase! Great post, even amidst the fun. You hit the nail on the head.

    Didja get a 3G iPhone for your bday?

  2. Ed T. July 23, 2008 at 12:38 am #

    I couldn’t agree more, I recently started carrying my camera with me more. If I don’t use the photo outright, It’s inspiration for other projects. Great Photos.

  3. Jay McLaughlin July 23, 2008 at 1:11 am #

    Definitely agree!

    I’ve always got my spangly new iPhone 3G with me, but if I’m not working and wielding my Canon, I’ll probably have something a little more random like my Holga or Kodak Brownie with me. Gotta love old skool aberrations!

  4. Frederik July 23, 2008 at 1:31 am #

    I’d love to have a peek in the Chase Jarvis iPhoto snapshot library, there must be some cool pics in there.

    But you’re very right about always carrying a camera. I should really get a new compact camera too.

  5. Shaun July 23, 2008 at 2:13 am #

    Happy brithday and hope you enjoyed your stay in NZ, were you shooting while on your stay in Queenstown?

  6. SeanK July 23, 2008 at 3:42 am #

    I couldn’t agree more with carrying a camera around wherever you go!! It is so often I am kicking myself for not having a camera close at hand. I suppose the trick is having something that is portable enough to have close at hand? Then there is the quality issue! When I do have those encounters I always wish I had my full kit with me! I am in the process of looking for a small compact that can hopefully do the job? Can anyone recommend something suitable? I have been looking at the Canon Powershot G9 or the Samsung NV24 /NV100 – more compact than the Canon but don’t know much about it?
    On a more important note though -
    Chase I came across your site/blog a month or so ago and am blown away at how open and forthcoming you are when it comes to your photography and your experiences. Very inspirational and great to have come across such an open forum! Thanks!

  7. David Tillyer July 23, 2008 at 4:02 am #

    I need to carry a camera with me more often although I do find my iPhone does a great job in good light. I saw one of these driving through my home city of Norwich in Norfolk, UK. They look weird but cool.

  8. Jus Cowland, Photographer July 23, 2008 at 4:31 am #

    oooh Happy Birhtday… could have been worse, you could be taking pictures from inside a tijuana jail cell.
    So funny that I am reading this the morning I thought to challenge myself to do just this! Thanks for inspiring me to take my challenge seriously!

  9. Simon Duhamel July 23, 2008 at 6:43 am #

    Carrying a camera wherever I go brings me back t my good ol’ college days!

  10. Saxi July 23, 2008 at 8:26 am #

    ha_A_a_ppy BirThDay! hope you had a great party without further scratches ;lo)

  11. Cody H. July 23, 2008 at 8:47 am #

    Wow, Sweet cooper! So when are you gonna reveal that secret house drink to all these bloggers?:)

  12. Ryan July 23, 2008 at 9:43 am #

    Amen. I take my D80 just about everywhere with me now and, as of last week, I’ve started taking a little Flip Ultra video camera along for the ride as well… never know what you’ll see…

  13. thesisdesignlab July 23, 2008 at 10:06 am #

    Happy Birthday, pallie! Looks like one too many Possum Hunt’s? Sweet.

    One or more of my cameras is ALWAYS on hand but you knew that.

  14. Rick Lohre July 23, 2008 at 10:37 am #

    Happy Birthday Chase.

    I agree…while I've been toting my G9 with me for some time, I gave it to my wife to use the other day and I almost missed an golden photo/video opportunity the other day.

    Were it not for my super premium 2 megapixel camera phone/video cam, LOL, I would have missed out on a funnel cloud that was forming right in front of my very eyes. I didn't miss it however, and just as Chase came out with his post, it reminded me to share it with some folks on my blog.

    While I would have rather had my full bag of gear with me, I'm glad I had something. Even if it wasn't a 3G iPhone (dang blasted AT&T; contract) my little Nokia stood in nicely!


  15. doug July 23, 2008 at 11:57 am #

    This goes doubly when you have kids.

    I started carrying a camera with me full time about two years ago and have captured so many moments of my kids that I would otherwise have missed.

    Lately I’ve been carrying my D300 with a 35mm f/2 on it but I’m thinking of swapping it for a Canon G9 so that I can get video as well.

  16. san francisco photographer July 23, 2008 at 9:31 pm #

    i wanna g9!

    san francisco photographer

  17. Kingsley July 23, 2008 at 11:10 pm #

    Belated Happy Birthday from DownUnder Chase….looks like you were having a great time! Hope the ‘scratch’ heals ok


    Perth, Western Australia

  18. Cormac O'Kelly (M.I.I Grad);(L.I.P.P.A) July 24, 2008 at 4:24 am #

    Howya big fella, birthday greetings from Dublin Ireland. Looks like an average night out for the weekend here in Dublin. Wine, women and song, eh!

    Anyway keep up the good work and the good play! Very important to have both.

    By the way would you mind doing a post on licensing and your take on the whole situation. Fine when it was film – licensing was justified in the clients eyes. Now the clients consider that we are just shooting ‘space’ and costs have fallen.

    How do you license your images? Do you still get the big bucks whilst retaining copyright, of course you do!!! Let us all in on your thoughts re: fees, charging, billing and how you handle the bad ass clients who say that there has been a reduction in a photographers direct costs since the arrival of digital photography.

    Would you ever give an image away free, i suppose is the question??

    Thanks man for blogging keeps me ‘loose’, your a breath of fresh air compared to the stuffy Web 1.0 guys I sometimes meet.

    Keep her lit!




    Dublin, Ireland

  19. Pixyst July 24, 2008 at 6:47 am #

    Happy Birthday in arrears to you Chase. I use a Fujifilm F31fd as my take-everywhere camera. D300 for when things get serious.

    David Apeji

  20. mhakola July 24, 2008 at 7:00 am #

    I “street-leveled” the building where my studio is and the 360 shot shows a guy walking down the street with a camera on his shoulder. My wife doesn’t think that it’s me but I’m not so sure…

  21. Richard Cave July 24, 2008 at 10:57 am #

    Happy Birthday mate!

    My camera has not left my side since arriving in Canada. I am in some of the best views in the world currently halfway between Bannf and Calgary having the time of my life!

    Problem is I am so busy watching the scenery I have not took any shots doh!


  22. Bipin Regmi July 24, 2008 at 2:35 pm #

    Happy B’Day Chase. I would completely agree with Chase and all of you. You never know what you see and get to capture. I have some good collection of on the go images.

  23. Tuffer July 24, 2008 at 4:10 pm #

    I had to stop taking my camera with me every day to work cuz I kept getting the itch to shoot and would end up taking photos the whole way home. pretty sure if I”m not supposed to be on my cell while driving, I certainly should have a g9 in front of my face.

  24. Gabriel July 25, 2008 at 9:45 am #

    HA! I was actually in one of these cars the other day. Pretty neat stuff.


  25. Snotty McSnotterson July 25, 2008 at 12:57 pm #

    I thank my very good camera phone every day, especially on the bus and downtown Seattle–the weirdos are usually about ten deep, wherever I go (making me the center of their weirdo universe–something to ponder later, I guess).

    Just found your blog, I love it.

  26. Gavin Jensen July 25, 2008 at 2:09 pm #

    I saw that same car when driving to work in Renton on Tuesday. I wonder if a photo of me and my blue wrx will make the cut for the seattle street view.

  27. thedr July 25, 2008 at 2:45 pm #

    If this is really the quality of those captures than why bother. Honestly.

  28. PhoebeT July 26, 2008 at 11:00 am #

    @ thedr: two ideas.

    one is that the quality of the capture is in the eye of the beholder my friend, just like beauty. and they’re all relative (2 megapixels 5 years ago was great…now you only want to see 50 mp captures?).

    and two: as an artist, i want to see a wide range of content within these categories of photos and art. i want to see feature film and youtube films. i want to see camera phone snaps and gregory crewdson shots.

    it’s really about taking pictures, (i read the post at face value). there are those that do and those that sit back gripe about others doing. suggestion that people (perhaps you) try to move from the latter camp to the former?

  29. Jared July 26, 2008 at 2:05 pm #

    I saw one of these cruising downtown Milwaukee a few days ago. I had no clue what it was and everyone was giving it weird looks. Thanks for clearing it up.

  30. Chase Jarvis July 26, 2008 at 2:27 pm #

    @ thedr and PhoebeT: Sorry dr I have to agree with Phoebe. The quality of the capture is really only a reasonable concern if you’re trying to make a commercial picture or a sig fine art print, which was not my point at all. Instead, it’s about awareness and capturing moments and practice and creating art. Licensing the images later and making large, high quality prints are other conversations entirely.

  31. Black English July 27, 2008 at 9:01 pm #

    Lesson learned. I just came back from Blockbuster and as I reached out for a movie I was beaten to it by none other than former MVP/Seattle Seahawk Shaun Alexander! So I left without a photo, without my manhood and without my movie. Does anyone have a copy of Beaches I can borrow????

  32. Greg July 29, 2008 at 5:24 pm #

    Dang once you snap one and start feelin it you want to wonder & get in the zone, it effects your behavior & the streets become a playground. The shapes become unravelled before you eyes, its like your groovin to some music with none playing.

  33. Adam July 29, 2008 at 5:32 pm #

    Chase, again, fun, and thoughtful stuff. I’d sooner leave the house without my pants than without my camera. I was out on a country road a few days ago and ran across a few young deer. I see them a lot where I’m at, but these were really nicely colored, stellar pose, frozen when I stopped my car, great morning light, beautiful yellow flowers, twisting road tailing off, just as I was taking the lens cap off a motorcycle shot past me and scared them off! Doh!
    I loved Black English’s post…in fact I love following the links of the people on this blog and checking out their work and what they are linked to. Endless nights…keep it real and follow your inner bada$$.
    Another thought on keeping your mind working is doing a picture of the day, everyday. I do it as a blog off my website, and it keeps me framing, but better it trains me to notice the incredible things that appear before me everyday. It ends up being a cool journal/diary type thing as well…must leave Mac…eyes are crossing…x.blktvt…szptsz..

  34. Skunk July 31, 2008 at 3:34 pm #

    Hello sir,

    Are you putting the G9 in one of your pockets, or are you carrying around a man purse?

    After swapping e-mails with you earlier this year I decided on the SD870IS, as I can shirt pocket it and has the wide angle. I still want a G9 though!


  35. Chase Jarvis August 1, 2008 at 2:07 pm #

    @skunk _ yup, G9 goes in well in a jacket pocket. Not so good for the pants. And a man purse (murse) is always a good option if you’re a euro ;)

  36. Greg August 3, 2008 at 10:15 pm #

    Seinfield: “Officer that man stole my european carryon bag” your what?… “my bag thing”… You mean your purse?… “Yes alright its a purse”

  37. Skunkabilly August 5, 2008 at 2:06 pm #

    Haha, or ‘urban daypack’!

    A bit toasty to be wearing a jacket now :( I do have a Timbuk2 messenger so I am sufficiently hip! (what can I say, I’m in Westwood, Los Angeles)]

    [skunk trolls Craigslist for a G9]

  38. meg August 9, 2008 at 1:29 am #

    That mini is outside Eichardts in Queenstown! Chase, did you go to NZ for your birthday? That would’ve been a great night out…

  39. Frank Doorhof August 17, 2008 at 1:56 am #

    Hi, we have seen it drive arround even here (remote area in that we are no big city, they do look funny).

  40. Scott Shepard August 17, 2008 at 11:12 am #

    Right on the mark Chase.
    I started carrying my full frame canon around and although it has had its pain in the ass days, it has paid off. Leslie Burns of Burns Auto Parts once said that you should make time to shoot for yourself. Carrying my camera around with just a 50MM on it has help me to look at life in a different way these days. Check out something I posted about landing a new national client because I carried my camera around(I was surfing that day, who would have guessed).

  41. Oliver August 28, 2008 at 10:04 pm #

    I really like the Google Earth photo. I’ve always wanted to see what the vehicle looks like.

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