I've often wondered why photography is as enticing as it is. You can see billions of people around the world taking photographs every single moment of the day. New technology often boasts about their photographic capabilities, especially smartphones. I would even assume that we live in a world where there is never a moment in which a photograph is not being taken somewhere on Earth.
As for myself, I would simply say that I enjoy preserving a memory in physical (or digital) form. I've never had the best memory when it comes to recalling details of places and people gone by, so it helps to have a frame of reference lying around.
Regardless of the reason, I think most people would agree that you simply cannot have too many hobbies.
I start playing around with the idea of photography when my family purchased a Fujifilm camera for family-specific events. I don't recall the specific model, but I do recall it was a point-and-shoot camera without an interchangeable lens. However, it was of great value to someone, like myself, who couldn't afford any other camera. I took about 10,000 shots with that camera over a 3-5 year span. Most notably, all of my trips to California were documented through this camera.
When possible, I would borrow my sister's camera, which is a Sony SLT-A58. This camera was great and allowed for some of my best early shots, especially those taken in Utah's and Nevada's parks.
I've finally come to a point in my life where I have the disposable income to invest in a solid photography kit. I played around with the idea of a lot of different cameras, different types, new vs used, etc. Finally, I settled on the Sony α7 III. This camera is mirrorless and uses a full-frame image sensor at 24 megapixels. I don't create large prints, and I am mostly focused on preserving memories in high quality for the next 5-10 years with this camera, so the specifications here are just perfect for me.
For lenses, I decided to buy two lenses that could carry me through most situations:
In addition, I grabbed a couple HGX Prime 67mm protection filters for the lenses.
As I delve further into photography and pick up more skills, I will most likely go back and grab a lens with a higher f-stop value, such as f/1.8. I toyed with the idea of grabbing a 50 mm at f/1.8, but decided to keep things in a reasonable price range instead.
Finally, I made sure to buy a photography-specific backpack with a rain guard, and the zipper on the back panel, to protect the equipment while wearing the bag. If you've ever had to haul around a DSLR (or camera of similar heft) in a bag that only has a shoulder strap, you'll know the pain it can cause. Putting all my equipment in a backpack was a no-brainer.
In anticipation of my future photos, I'm improving my entire workflow. Right now, I'm starting by re-designing my photography website and working on setting up my workflow preferences for the camera → computer/cloud storage → editing → publishing process.