Photo Tip #25-Don't Panic
If you're shooting and something goes wrong, don't panic. Methodically check your camera and equipment, look over batteries, inspect contracts, change lenses, flash memory cards (or film) check the basic workings and simple mechanisms first. Even if you drop your camera and it appears to be broken, work slowly and carefully, first blowing any glass off the front, and then working your way back through the mechanisms until you inspect the entire camera and lens in question. Often even a camera that has been dropped and appears to be little more than a pile of broken glass can have a UV filter pulled off and keep working, for example, since a lot of the lens is backed up against the camera body and thereby better protected. Also, many "dinged" looking cameras suffer cosmetic damage in a drop or fall, but still keep shooting frame after frame for years to come.
Your reputation as a photographer, however, will be ruined with your first swear word in front of an important client. Gear can be replaced.