We attended the Photography Show in Birmingham this March and as always it was a fantastic show with lots of exciting new things to try and take a look at. (We're looking at you Canon and Nikon Mirrorless) For those that don't know, The Photography Show is one of the UK's biggest annual photography and media trade shows which takes place in Birmingham each year. It's a brilliant opportunity to get your hands on new gear and see what all the fuss is about. You can cash in on big discounts with retailers, attend speaker sessions and masterclasses, window shop and really just to get a sense of where the industrious as a whole is going.
Excitingly we were able to get our hands on the Nikon Z6 and Z7 - Nikon's brand new mirrorless systems, as well as the new Canon EOS R, their own new mirrorless entry.
As Sony continues to push the boundaries with their incredible range of mirrorless systems, Nikon and Canon have some catching up to do. With that being said, to regular users of the Canon and Nikon DSLR bodies, jumping into mirrorless doesn't have to be as daunting as it sounds. These new bodies from Nikon and Canon feel right at home in the hands of someone familiar with their treasured DSLR. I myself moved from shooting on a Nikon DSLR and made the switch to Sony Mirrorless and I felt very comfortable using the Nikon Z6 and Z7 having never picked one up before the show.
Changing bodies is a big deal. You get very used to your way of working on certain cameras. You can change functions, modes and settings by touch in a matter of seconds. Shifting from that familiar territory is unsettling, you have to rebuild that muscle memory. I think Canon and Nikon have done a fantastic job with the design of these new bodies and I'm sure loyal users will have no time picking up one of these new mirrorless sytems. As well as being able to look at brand new gear at the shows, one of the best reasons to attend each year is for the conferences and masterclasses on display with some brilliant speakers. This year featured Lindsey Adler, Lara Jade, Martin Parr and Gordon Buchanan to name just a few. There's so much you can learn these days online and in books, however, being able to ask questions and interact with the people that are teaching makes it a much more valuable experience and as a result you're able to soak up a lot more information. Sponsored by Cameraworld as the lead retailer for the event, you can really bag some bargains at these shows. If you're ever considering buying new gear, it's always worth hanging on for the show as it's often where you'll get the best deals. Especially if you're looking to part exchange an older camera body. One of the best reasons for buying your new gear at the show (outside of just getting great deals) is that you can get your hands on and try pretty much any of the new gear you're looking for. This goes for tripods, monopods, bags, lights, camera bodies, lenses and all other accessories. You don't always have these options in store and you certainly don't online.
If you're thinking of heading to the show next year (March 14-17th 2020) then we recommend making a list of everything you're interested in seeing. This allows you to follow a rough schedule of where to go and what to do. Without some kind of plan, you can easily get lost in the crowds and miss out an the things most useful to you. Depending on your schedule we'd even recommend going to the show a couple of days in a row, using the first day as time to scout things out and see what you're interested in ready to return the next day to talk further with suppliers or make those big purchases.