I want to be a better photographer….

1 year, 8 months ago 21
Posted in: Uncategorized


new bag2




I really want to get better, I don’t want to get stagnate, I want to keep growing!  I found out something really interesting when reviewing my images from last fall in Acadia, 95% were shot with a single lens, the 18-135.  Now that is not a bad thing, ghe 18-135 is a really good lens, almost great, but not quite great.  That’s not the problem, the problem is a lens that covers that much ground makes you lazy, after all you can stand in one spot and do everything from 27mm to over 200mm coverage.  It’s a matter of perspective, if you shoot from one position you get one perspective, but if you move forward or back up, the perspective changes and the photo changes!  Lens that cover a large range of focal lengths can lead to being lazy.


The first two weeks of June I am teaching two workshops with Jack, the Oregon Coast and the Palouse. I’ve decided to pack differently and “smaller” for this trip.  I am leaving my beloved 18-135 home.  I’m going to try this one trip, more simply.  If  you are sick and tired of my bag articles, feel free to skip ths one!!!  For those interested, here is my thoughts on this trip.


I’ve been down the coast for this trip three times and to the Palouse seven or eight times.  I know what we shoot and I know what lenses will get the job done.  For me the temptation is take a big rolling bag and stuff it full of every lens I love in the Fuji X-System.  I’m afraid I’ve done that before!!!  So for this trip I will take the Think Tank Airport Essentials backpack with two X-T2 bodies, 10-24 f 4, 18-55 f 2.8-4, 23mm f 2, 50mm f 2, 60mm Macro f 2.4, 55-200 f 3.5-4.8, 100-400 f 4.5-5.6, 12 batteries and filters and accessories.


That will provide coverage from 15mm to 600mm (o.k. with the 1.4 tele-converter – 840MM!!)   I will pick up an inexpensive lugage rack to roll the backpack through the airports and I promise to do a blog entry mid June and reveal if I was pretty smart or prove, once again, I’m not all that smart after all!


Either way,  it’s gonna be fun!!




the pilgrim


Along the Coast!!!!



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The rope

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21 Responses

  1. Bill. For a real challenge. Take one body and two primes. Shoot everything with those.

  2. admin says:

    But a good plan……

  3. Jerry R says:

    Curious why you are taking the 18-55 and 55-200 instead of the 18-135. I am interested in your thinking process here as the difference between 135 and 200 is minimal .and you have the 100-400 along to get to the 200 from 135 anyway. Of course, I guess it gives you lighter options when moving a distance from the car.

    • admin says:

      I really wanted to discpline myself to stick to one shorter zoom range. I suspect the 18-55 and 16-55 are a tad sharper thant the 18-135 but then the 18-135 is a fantastic lens, just playing around to see how I can do.

  4. Jerry R says:

    I am getting strange time stamps on the postings. Are you running on zulu time?

  5. Mike Roberts says:

    I fight that “what do I take” battle every time I go somewhere! The first time out to someplace when I’m paying workshop fees, airplane, hotel, etc, I believe in taking more than I need with the thought that I may never go there again and don’t want to miss something. But, I like your thinking once you’ve been to the Oregon coast 3 times and the Polouse 7 or 8 times, it is time to refresh and mix it up with different gear to keep from growing stagnant.

  6. Richard Browne says:

    The ideal way to lighten your load is take the absolute minimum amount of gear and then borrow all the lenses you need from Jack!

  7. pointreyes says:

    I will be vacating on the North Oregon Coast (mainly Clatsop County) for the last 1.5 weeks of June. I’m still struggling with trying to determine what to take since I have 14 lenses to choice from. In my case, I have to accommodate family photos (8 kids) and nature which adds to the issue. Plus Oregon coast can still be wet in late June – us Oregonians joke about summer really starts after July 4.

    What will definitely be coming with 10-24, 18-55, 27, 50 Touit, and 50-140 with 1.4x and 2.0x. I do have a rain bag for the non-WR lens. That gives me 15 – 420mm coverage plus 1:1 macro. But I am torn about not have my faster primes for those portrait shots of the kids. Oddly, if I don’t bring at least one fast prime, I might have to bring the XF-X500 flash – but it might come in handy for macro work as well (I can control the flash wireless thanks to roboShoot.)

    • admin says:

      I think you have identified a near perfect mix, and I feel the same, hate to go anywhere without the 56 f 1.2 of 90mm f 2. The hard thing is to decide where to stop and actully do it!!!!!

  8. Dudley H says:

    Bill can I use Jack’s lenses as well in the Palouse 🙂

  9. Bill, sounds like we all will be in for a very good conversation(s) in the Palouse. I’m interested in the departure of the 18-135, and what might fill that space in the bag. CU in a few weeks.

    • admin says:

      I will carry the 18-55 instead but will have the 55-200 to cover the longer area, I think both of those lenses are “slightly” sharper and it will force me to use my feet instead of the zoom! kIt’s an experiment, so after those two weeks I will have a better feel for whether it was a good idea or not!

      • admin says:

        I swtiched bags to the very slighty larger Tamrac Anvil Slim 15, it allowed one extra lens space inwhich I out the 16mm f 1.4 with it’s square hood.

  10. admin says:

    “added” not out!!!!

  11. Carl says:

    Love your thinking – and detail explanation of the reasoning! HOWEVER, since you have been there so many times before – and always had a zoom of some sort – and probably shoot everything a dozen times with a zoom – why take the 18-55 or 55-200? Make this trip an all fixed focal length lens tour in the middle ranges! Now that should really get your creative juices flowing! Make it a truly memorable/totally different trip!! (I’m sure you will have to carry the 10-24 to get really wide (but only shoot it at, say, a constant 10) – and the 100-400 for telephoto). I would be most anxious to see your images afterwards. They would be hard to beat I bet!!!

  12. admin says:

    You have my creative juices flowing! I’m thinking maybe; 14-16-23-35-50 and the 90 and then the 100-400 just for long work in the Palouse!? That would make the daily system range from 21mm to 135mm, but all single focal length lenses all with good speed, none slower than f 2 except for the 14mm at f 2.8!! Worth pondering. This is a never ending adventure!

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