Bags, boxes and cameras

It has been a busy few days, my move is complete and a semblance of order is taking shape in my new abode, thankfully the final box is unpacked and consigned to the queue awaiting a journey to the recycling centre.

With my belongings pretty much in place, there will be a little fine tuning as I become more settled but with my photography gear now out of its brief cardboard incarceration, it is time to head out for my weekly jaunt along the riverside and into town.

It has become a familiar habit to reach for my G11 and LX5 cameras of late, it appears that my enjoyment of retro compacts is not about to fade any time soon, such is the enjoyment I am getting from using them.

Today’s jaunt would be brief, believe it or not, I am packing my bags again, or at least one, in preparation for a few days away, a welcome break from a busy summer at work and the tribulations of moving.

The hardest decision I will have to make here, is whether the bigger gear gets packed or if I prefer to travel light, suggestions are welcome!

Sunday with the ‘5’

Saturdays tend to be the days where I have a trip to Dartmoor or a little further afield from my home town of Exeter, where Sunday’s have evolved into my ‘stay local’ walks, often up and out before seven AM to enjoy having a city pretty much to myself while others luxuriate in their Sunday lie in.

For me, Photography has gone hand in hand with my hikes, long or short, so I cannot remember the last time that I did not take a camera bag with me, that is until today.

Those that are following my current chapter in my photography will know that I have purchased some older digital compact cameras at budget prices, the most recent being a Lumix LX5, which has been vying for a place in my bag with a Canon G11 and a Canon S95 but today, I have decided to take just the LX5 and a spare battery on my Sunday walk.

As a further exercise in my becoming more acquainted with the ‘5’, I have decided to make full use of the dedicated aspect ratio control that have become a feature of many Panasonic compact cameras, 16:9,4:3.3:2 and 1:1.

I became addicted to the 1:1 square format with my long since gone Fuji X100F, however this was only if I shot Jpeg’s, the LX5 will shoot RAW in this format, this would be my theme for the today’s walk.

Coupled with the ability to shoot close up at the wide end of the focal range, this gave me the option of getting some decent macro shots as I meandered my way along my chosen path.
Naturally, with such a diminutive sensor, there will never be that separation of the subject and background but nonetheless, the image quality is very pleasing.

It is fair to say that I am having a blast using these older cameras, I love the G11 and S95 for the colours, the LX5 for its versatility but they have one thing in common, they have really brought the fun element back into my photography, as I find myself shooting compositions I may not have shot with my bigger gear.

I have a few days away in the coming weeks and I am seriously considering just taking my trio of compacts only, something I never thought I would ever do just a few weeks ago.



Black and white with the ‘5’

I am due to be moving house at the end of the month so I should really be getting my head around packing more boxes to make my life a little easier and what better way to start, by deciding to go out for another local camera walk!

In my defence, it was just after six thirty AM, my customary first brew of the day was already history and I am sure my neighbours would not be happy with too much disturbance at that hour on a Sunday morning anyway.

As I was so pleased with the new (but old) LX5’s images from yesterday’s outing, I decided to take just this camera and a spare battery, this diminutive little camera easily fits into a pocket, so for the first time in a very long time I, I did not even take a camera bag with me.

A few of the reviews on the LX5 had suggested that the in camera dynamic black and white picture profile was very good, so I have set one of the camera’s custom presets to shoot with this profile in JPEG only, I decided also, to make full use of the ‘5’s ability to shoot in the square format at the flick of a switch.

An additional post will be made in the coming days of the colour images from today’s sneaky outing but I was keen to share the images from the black and white perspective, before I begin the onerous task of sorting and packing for my impending move.



A walk with the LX5

As my dalliance with older digital cameras continues apace, today was the turn of my Lumix LX5, for its first ‘proper’ shoot.

A trip to Dartmoor would give the latest recruit a challenge with the changing light but I would not be disappointed.

My enjoyment of shooting in the square format was soon put to the test as the ‘5’ has the ability to shoot 1:1 aspect ratio in RAW, a stroll around the footpath of Venford reservoir gave me plenty of chances to find some early autumn compositions.

Using the square format with the cameras macro mode worked very well, the level of detail was very pleasing to say the least.

When I started shooting with these almost forgotten cameras, I had envisaged the occasional day out with them, however, it would appear that they will find their way into my bag for some time to come as it feels as though I have rediscovered the hobby of photography all over again.

The new (but old) recruit.

The latest of my bargain retro cameras has finally joined the ranks of my other digital compacts, the Canon G11, Canon S95, Lumix LX3 and Lumix GF2, a warm welcome to the Lumix LX5.

Since I was not able to try it out yesterday afternoon, I ensured the battery was fully charged and packed it into my work rucksack, so I was able to go for a quick photoshoot after work today, in my usual test arena, Exeter city centre.

Being very similar to my LX3, it did not take long to get used to the button layout, just as well, as I was going to be shooting between heavy rain showers, So I was keen to get a few shots under my belt before the next downpour.

One of the reasons shooting with these compact cameras is so much fun, is that nobody is bothered with this innocuous little camera, so I go about my photography unnoticed.

Knowing how good the images from the LX3 were, I was looking forward to seeing what the ‘5’ could do, I was not disappointed.