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Thread: To carry your camera, or not to carry?

  1. #1
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    To carry your camera, or not to carry?

    Aaarrrggghhh. I made the wrong choice again today. I had to visit family who were organisers at the Bega Show. We all went back to their place for a cuppa and lunch, and returned to the show in the afternoon.
    Both times I decided I didn't want to lug several Kgs of camera around with me on a hot humid day so left it in the car back at their house. Wrong Choice!

    Got back there in the afternoon just in time to see a motorcross stunt team start doing some amazing jumps, somersaults, and mid-air tricks.
    Followed by a Canadian Lumberjack Group doing some pretty flashy stuff with chainsaws, and pole climbing gear etc.
    Both would have been some great practice time with subjects and photography styles I've not tried before.
    A bit annoying since last week I made the opposite wrong choice - I actually DID lug the whole damned lot around for an entire day in the heat at the 4WD Spectacular, and not once needed to even open the camera bag, let alone get the camera out of it.

    I got into the habit when I first bought the camera, of putting it in the car with me everywhere I went, and I actually had it in the car today too, but there's a big difference between carrying it in the car, and having it on your person when it's not exactly pocket sized. It's at least a couple of Kgs of gear to carry around in the hope you might need it.

    So just how do you go about deciding when and where to carry your camera? They're big, bulky, heavy, but offer a much better IQ if you do happen to see something worth shooting than your phone camera will.
    Last edited by Ezookiel; 18-02-2012 at 7:17pm.
    Canon EOS 60D ..... EFS 18-200mm f/3.5 - 5.6 IS - 430 EXII Speedlite - "eBay special" Remote Control Unit - Manfrotto 190XPROB w 804RC2 head.

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    If I go out, I generally just take my 60D with my 24-105L lens on it, and if I know I'm going to be indoors, I also take a flash.
    I use my Black Rapid strap to carry it, and you hardly know it's there, but you can quickly bring it up and take a few shots.

    I'll be going to the Pet Expo tomorrow at Rosehill Racecourse, and I'll have this kit with me at all times!
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    I only have an 18-200 which is quite a bit of weight with the 60D. I often carry the whole bag as it has the 430EXII in it if I want fill flash, as well as the cloths and lenspen for the times I can't seem to keep stuff off the lens. I really do need to come up with a more compactly portable system such as just the lenspen in a pocket, and the camera only. Might have to look into a Black Rapid.

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    being a novice, I only have one camera body and two lenses, a tripod and a back pack. It can be weighty if you carry it over your arm or by the handle on the top, but it is not so bad when worn as a back pack. I do have to take it off to get my camera out.

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    Member Tom J McDonald's Avatar
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    Easy, buy a smaller camera.

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    A backpack is a good idea ,but get someone else to carry it, then it is easy to get to the camera ,this works well with two shooters.
    Last edited by pixy; 18-02-2012 at 10:02pm.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ezookiel View Post
    I only have an 18-200 which is quite a bit of weight with the 60D. I often carry the whole bag as it has the 430EXII in it if I want fill flash, as well as the cloths and lenspen for the times I can't seem to keep stuff off the lens. I really do need to come up with a more compactly portable system such as just the lenspen in a pocket, and the camera only. Might have to look into a Black Rapid.
    60D + 50mm 1.8 around your neck and nothing else would be a good start
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    I try to take camera with me most times, but when i don't have it on me, i am looking for great photo location's anyway. Ha, but sometimes i say "that would have been a nice photo" and store them into my SD brain card.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Roddy3030 View Post
    .... sometimes i say "that would have been a nice photo" and store them into my SD brain card.
    LOL. Yep, and the PP on those images is always absolutely perfect. But they tend to fade over time unfortunately, and at my age many have disappeared totally

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    decisions, decisions.......know the feeling well and I don`t have that big of a kit. I did the Milford tack, NZ, a year and a bit ago with my two boys and only took one lens. Overall I think I made the right choice about lugging camera and one lens but there were plenty of times I wish I had the wide zoom or the tele. . I have been caught out on lots of ocassions with no camera and suffered for it. I think I need a good pocket camera for those times you mention.
    Graeme
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    I think you have to make a decision..your either out for a social afternoon with friends and family or doing a shoot...if your doing a shoot..take the gear..if its the former..buy a half decent point and shoot for those occasions

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ezookiel View Post
    So just how do you go about deciding when and where to carry your camera? They're big, bulky, heavy, but offer a much better IQ if you do happen to see something worth shooting than your phone camera will.
    For me it's quite an easy decision.

    I am not an opportunistic shooter; my shoots are planned, and I go out specifically to shoot at certain times in certain places.

    I have specific photographic interests which typically don't fall into the category of opportunistic images.

    If you like to shoot anything and everything, then it would make sense to carry a versatile rig which is not too bulky, just in case an opportunity arises.
    Last edited by Xenedis; 19-02-2012 at 9:54am.

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    I am the opposite of Xenedis. I have my cameras and kit in my car everytime I go out. My most used setups is the 7D with the 18-250 Sigma or 150-500 Sigma, my backpack is over 13Kg and if I am not sure what will be around I take the lot, On a warm day in Adelaide last Thursday I carried the 7D with the 150-500 Sigma and monopod round my neck and with the rest of my gear in the backpack I walked round the Botanical Gardens for 3-4 hours with no problems. I am 68 and have had a hip replacement. I have just purchased a BR style 2 camers strap for when I go to the next Parilla off road race. What I will cary there all day (4-5 hours) will start out with the 7D and new 70-200 2.8L is on one side and the 400D and 150-500 on the other, in a couple of belt pouches will be my new 2X extender and 18-250 Sigma plus another bag with drinks and snacks. During the day I will walk between 10 & 20 Km. At last years race, as well as cars, I came away with shots of birds, wildlife, landscapes, an aeroplane, working farm machinery and people.
    Keith

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    It was partly that I had already attended the show in the morning, and apart from the odd giant pumpkin or other prize winning bit of food, which has absolutely zero interest to me, there was nothing to convince me I'd want the camera on the second trip there in the arvo. To find people doing "Krusty Demon" type motorbike tricks was quite a surprise. It's not my normal interest, and certainly didn't fit in with any of my main photography styles, but since I'm a beginner, it would have been an interesting learning opportunity to play around with something new.

    On the plus side, I had a bit of a win today having the camera with me. My daughter was doing the baristing for a special event for the "Shirley Club" (a club for people called 'Shirley' I kid you not), and I was kind of stuck hanging around a bunch of middle, mature, and senior aged women, killing time waiting for my daughter. It was looking at being pretty boring for me.
    One of the ladies is a long term friend of the family, and I heard her lament that she wishes someone had a video camera. As she is such a good friend, I pulled her aside for a second and told her I have my camera gear in the car, and I'd happily grab it and take some shots for her, it wouldn't be video (the 60D can do vid, but I can't), and I couldn't promise a lot as it was indoor and I had only the 18-200 which isn't a low light lens, and the church it was being held in has really high ceilings, so bouncing the 430exii might have been too dim, and direct flash may have been too bright, but she was thrilled at the offer anyway.
    So I spent the afternoon being the 'tog for an event of over 60 people, which gave me a real chance to experiment and practice in a situation where if I ball'sed it up it didn't really matter to anyone.

    Carrying the camera worked out today as I got to have a ball when it was looking like I'd be bored witless.
    Now I guess I'd best go see if any of them actually came out ok. At least putting names in any captions won't be hard, everyone was called "Shirley"
    Last edited by Ezookiel; 19-02-2012 at 4:47pm.

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    Do they also have a club for "Laverns"?

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    Why spend all that money on expensive equipment and not carry your gear? You never know when you are going to miss that once in a lifetime opportunity!
    P.S Ive done the same and need to listen to my own advice.

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    Quote Originally Posted by davidbro View Post
    Why spend all that money on expensive equipment and not carry your gear? You never know when you are going to miss that once in a lifetime opportunity!
    In my case, my photography isn't opportunistic.

    I predominantly shoot seascapes in the dawn light.

    To accidentally stumble upon such a subject at such a time (while carrying a bag of camera gear) would be one hell of a coincidence.

    Everyone's photography is different. As per my earlier post, I shoot specific subjects, and I go out to capture them.

    The fact that I plan my shoots and go out specifically to shoot rather than simply being somewhere and having a camera on me (or not) has no bearing on the monetary cost of my gear, as it brings me value. It just does so when I am inspired to shoot and when I've planned to shoot, rather than at any time in an unpredictable manner.

    Quite a different approach to what a street candid photographer would take, but no less valid.

    It all comes down to your photographic interests.
    Last edited by Xenedis; 19-02-2012 at 8:21pm.

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    I guess that the odds are really slim (unless you live in Sydney/Melbourne where these things happen way more often) but seeing some major crime/accident/fire and having the 60D so that I can take some HD vid for the TV companies, and some really good quality stills for the newspapers, would have to be a whole lot more appealing to Editors/Producers than an incredibly crappy mobile phone vid and some pixelated grainy snaps.
    But like I said, the odds would be pretty low. I'd imagine if that was why you carried a camera, then you'd carry one your whole life and never get to use it.
    I fully understand your attitude towards it Xenedis. I just wonder if there's absolutely nothing ever going to come across your path that you'd want to photograph except a seascape? I realise that is your love, your goal, and your purpose for shooting, but if there's nothing else on the planet that you would ever want to have a camera nearby for? But then that's the sort of stuff they make small compact P&S's for I suppose.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ezookiel View Post
    I fully understand your attitude towards it Xenedis. I just wonder if there's absolutely nothing ever going to come across your path that you'd want to photograph except a seascape?
    I shoot portraits, cityscapes, landscapes, architecture and still-life images too -- again, all pre-determined, planned and somewhat controlled rather than opportunistic.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ezookiel View Post
    I realise that is your love, your goal, and your purpose for shooting, but if there's nothing else on the planet that you would ever want to have a camera nearby for?
    For the kind of fine-art photography I practise, generally not. The outdoor stuff is very dependent upon particular qualities of light (ie, not the kind you get wandering around in broad daylight; rather, the kind you head out to pursue and capture).

    Would there be some kind of incidental subject I may wish to photograph for reasons other than fine-art photography? Sure. If and when such a thing comes up (and it does), my iPhone's camera will generally do.

    I have taken a DSLR rig to BBQs and other social gatherings, but most of the time I'd rather not be 'the photographer', and enjoy the occasion without worrying about gear.

    My subject matter interest after my years of shooting is very particular. I'm typically after something specific.

    Carrying a rig "just in case" doesn't really gel with that model.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ezookiel View Post
    But then that's the sort of stuff they make small compact P&S's for I suppose.
    That's one use for such a camera, yes. My iPhone is as close to that as I get.

    it does see some use, but not for anything serious, and I've never published anything I've shot with it.
    Last edited by Xenedis; 20-02-2012 at 7:07pm.

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