Equipment

Get your camera out. Posh or cheap it does not matter, go and explore and exploit its potential, learn about what it can do for you.

Don’t get hung up on mega pixels or other technical babble (though we all do). Nothings perfect whatever you have, there will always be some kind of issue, compromise or button / menu feature that will drive you nuts and leave you head scratching wondering why that function or feature was incorporated into camera or menu design.

Fiddle with your camera’s settings. Maybe all you need for that creative shot is to change the metering from matrix to spot or centre weighted, turn off some auto feature or go manual. Try to get the picture composition right in the viewfinder. Most of all have fun.

Many years ago a SCUBA diving friend told me off !
For lusting after kit.
– One camera, one lens – And the best camera is ? –
– The one you have with you – No camera no photo 😦

I’m currently using two cameras.
The Nikon D810 (new for me) and the Olympus Pen F.

When I do photography for myself, I only go out with one camera and one lens and see what comes my way. I feel it makes you work harder on composition and creates a deeper understanding of a particular focal length.

Much has been written about cameras and lenses…So here my two bob’s worth (English coinage expression). Actually you may find me very light on words as I’m just going to sum up my own succinct thoughts on the items I have purchased and currently use.

First and foremost a camera is for me, a tool and not a bit of bling with knobs and dials to fuss over. That’s not to say I’m not careful but it’s there to be used and enjoyed.

Nikon
D810 camera body. Small and lightweight (compared to my old D3s) reasonably well built 36mg full frame camera. It has better dynamic range and exposure metering than the D3s. In my opinion it is not as well built. I do like the solid robust and masculine feel of Nikon’s Pro kit as its built to last. As an example look at the battery door of your camera and then compare it to a pro body.

Nikon 24mm f2.8D lens = good not great / needs to be stopped down.
Nikon 50mm f1.8G lens = very good for the price point / bargain.
Nikon 85mm f1.8G lens = very good.
Nikon SB900 flash unit = very good.

nikon-d810-brochure

Olympus Pen F = Small lightweight, create the image in the camera on the fly. Flick the knob on the front to pick the colour, flick the one on the back and change the highlights and shadows and other settings. Very cool micro 4/3rd’s camera. Best of all I love its black and white rendering (My favorite is the mono profile 2 setting).

olympus-pen-f-brochure

olympus-monotone-profile-control-colour-profile-control

The Olympus Pen F has four main elements that I really like.
1: Colour wheel means no menu faffing about. Just turn the dial.
2: Black and white TriX look. – Mono Profile 2 –
3: Classic chrome film look.  – Colour profile 2 –
4: 5 Axis image stabilisation.
The Len’s are affordable and very compact with great quality.

Olympus 12mm f2.0 lens = love it.
Olympus 25mm f1.8 lens = love it.
Olympus 45mm f1.8 lens = love it.
Olympus 75mm f1.8 lens = love it.
Samyang 7.5mm lens = very good, but you cant use it all the time.

Post processing software.
I use Adobe Camera Raw in Photoshop CC and Nikon NXD to post process the images to my taste. Although I do have a copy of Lightroom I seldom use it.
All my photos are shot in RAW and Jpeg.

Photograph what you like, in your way, the way “you” see things.
Try not to be swayed by fashion and be true to yourself.

Photo websites I like and follow (in no particular order).
Ken Rockwell 
Steve Huff 
Imaging Resource
Photographylife
Robin Wong
Thorsten Overgaard
David Thorpe
OLaf
Matt Granger