10th June, 2017 - changing gear(s)

Hi. I'm Welby. That's me in the photo, standing next to the Mystery Machine (not mine) at Phoenix Comicon. (Note the Hufflepuff tie.) I think I was unduly influenced by the Scooby gang as a kid. That was the dream - always touring about, meeting new people, solving mysteries and having adventures - perpetual tourists with a side of intrigue. Sigh...

My life isn't quite like that, but I'm trying to learn to be something of a perpetual tourist, even if it's just on my kayak, rowing around the lake that's within stumbling distance of my house, or on my alarmingly long commute to work. I've been steering my life towards being able to travel more and travel better, but on a budget. This blog will record my fumbling towards that goal.

To that end, I'm selling my camera and lenses. This isn't an ad - I'm still working on that part. For a few years I've been happily shooting with a Micro four-thirds camera, which is tiny and mighty. I've even learned that some Nat Geo photographers were using the same camera that I've had (a Panasonic GX7). But even though my camera is much smaller and uses smaller lenses than most of my photography friends' cameras, I've decided it's too much stuff to carry and maintain. So, I'm going back to a bridge camera - a point and shoot with aspirations. I'm currently shooting with an interim camera, a Panasonic FZ300 which I'll hand down to my wife after I've sold my gear to buy my next camera, a Sony RX10 mark 3.

Both the new Panasonic and the Sony have zoom lenses that go from a moderate wide angle to a compelling telephoto. They're also both weather-sealed against rain and dust, which makes them nice for travel. They aren't small cameras, but they're smaller than a camera body and three or four lenses, which is what I've been carrying around. The FZ300 is not bad, and will be a serious upgrade for my wife when I hand it over. A few images:

I've tried to get a good photo of one of these little guys for years, but I never had the right lens on my camera. That's the benefit of a good zoom camera: had the FZ300 for one day - finally got the shot.


 This capture was taken from a lightly rocking kayak. I think it was the best of three shots I took - the others weren't blurrier, but due to the kayak rocking I would cut off the heron's feet. He flew away and I didn't get any useable shots of him in flight.

 Taken in late day just outside my office building. I have to confess that I partially took my job because I new there would be some photographic opportunities.

Another shot from just outside my office, taken within a few minutes of the hare photo. I didn't get great detail of the quail's comb, but these small birds move so erratically that they're tough shots.

If it takes me a while to sell my gear and get the Sony, I won't feel too deprived with the FZ300. It's a great little camera.


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