When I had a full-time job in financial services, I bought pretty much whatever I wanted (not that I was rolling in cash, mind you - didn't buy a Leica; but I was on that semi-annual upgrade cycle of Nikon DSLRs...). Of course, this was 2003-2007, when I thought film was mostly a thing of the past and my purchases revolved around digital. Looking back, that would have been a great time to buy film gear. For a couple years during and after grad school, I did some freelance work as a commercial photographer, and that was mainly digital too; the work drove me nuts, it was very assembly-line and ... I got out of that. Now, I on a teacher's salary I finance my gear purchases by selling other gear - it's sort of a revolving door, with the occasional monetary loss when I can't make my money back. But I don't own nearly as much camera gear as I once did and I'm much better off for it. Film and chemistry I buy as needed, it's a few dozen dollars a month typically.