After taking a break in traveling over the last several years I have an “EPIC” photography trip coming up which will span an entire month this summer. I have been planning this trip for over a year and a half now as it was supposed to have happened last summer.

I have found out that having an extra year of planning a trip such as this has its benefits, and a surprising disadvantage too. Some of the benefits include more time to do research for planning the itinerary, having more time to make upgrades on the trailer, and upgrades on gear and such. The one surprising disadvantage I discovered.. having too much time on my mind to second guess the photography gear I wanted to use while on the trip.

When I began to plan this trip I was in the mindset that I was going to leave my wide and mid range zooms either at home, or in a spare bag just for emergency and just shoot with just a few primes because I wanted to challenge myself. I felt having shot with zooms for so long had made a bit lazy and I wanted to try to photograph like so many great photographers from yesterday-year used to before zoom lenses became acceptable. There were also the reasoning that primes were sharper and such.

So began my great experiment with making sure I was going to be able to take on such a feat and not regret having my wonderful zooms with me. I went out and did some street shooting and found that a couple of primes were perfect for that, but every time I was out in nature I found I missed the ability to be able to get the frame I wanted due to the restraints of nature. Nature was always the stumbling block because a lot of times I found myself VERY limited to where I could safely capture an image from. I found I didn’t have the luxury of “moving around to get different perspectives or moving to get closer or farther with a prime attached to the camera” most times and that was frustrating at best. Also I found myself fumbling to find the right step-up ring to attach a filter, and even forgetting the correct one when I had switched lens combinations.

Also in having an extra year to plan I found myself reflecting on what was really important about photographing while spending 30 days traveling, and that was I needed to be in the moments to really capture the moments and if I was spending too much time fiddling with gear I’d lose that. So I decided on K.I.S.S. (keep it simple stupid) because most times having too many choices rattles the rocks in my head and in the end I decided that having just a basic two zoom lens set was going to be the best. Now that’s not to say I am not bringing along several other ‘specialty lenses’ for certain situations that I think might arise *wink*.

Thanks for reading, and hopefully I will have a few shots from the road that I will post here. 😉


When creativity strikes

Nikon D850 + Nikon 70-200mm f/4 G. 1/160 @ f/4 iso 200

It’s hard to know when the creative mood will strike, like this morning for instance. I had some dental work done yesterday (I am not a fan of the dentist or doctors in general) and the procedure required a bit more being done than I hoped for when I first walked in. So when all was said and done I was prescribed some pretty strong pain meds and told don’t drive or operate machinery while using said medication. So I ended up taking a second day off of work and after taking my every 4-6 hour dosage of meds I ended up sleeping for an hour. When I woke I decided that I was feeling pretty good (albeit I was feeling a bit guilty of not going into work because I felt so good), the sun was shining and my little voice of creativity said to me… “HEY! Get up from the couch you dope, there is some nice light outside and you’re feeling good, so go get your camera and get a few backyard shots”! Well, my first clue should have been when I slept for an hour, but NO, I grabbed the camera and went outside. Whew… I only lasted a few minutes as I was wobbly and decided that I needed to sit down. Then began the fun part of editing this shot. It was hard to focus on what I wanted to do and even now I am not sure how good it is because I still have brain fog.

So the lesson here is tell that stupid little voice of guilt to shut up the next time you decide to take a day off of work and enjoy sitting around turning your brain to mush watching videos on your tablet. 😉