My GX1 Lightweight Trip

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Formby captured on a GX1 with Olympus 9-18 lens at 9mm. The conversion to B&W was made using Nik Silver Efex Pro 2
Formby captured on a GX1 with Olympus 9-18 lens at 9mm. The conversion to B&W was made using Nik Silver Efex Pro 2

I was going to use today’s post to tell you a little more about how I used the Topaz Detail 2 software to emphasise the detail in my LX5 images to produce enlargements. On Friday however I attended a Topaz webinar about Detail 3 which is due for release shortly. Detail 3 seems to be a big leap forward on Detail 2 (which is already very good) so I will wait until I have the new software to explain more. Instead I want to share some information about a trip out yesterday.

These days my opportunities to shoot tend to be when I am out in the landscape walking so my main camera for this is the GX1. Every month or two however I have the opportunity to get out with other photographers and spend a day or two just photographing. For these trips I tend to supplement my usual GX1 and LX5 cameras with a 5D MKII. I do like to use this camera and the results are superb. The downside is that it’s heavy and walking around with two full camera systems on your back for a long period of time is hard work.

For this weekend’s trip I decided I would only take the GX1 and LX5 with me together with some ND graduated filters (“P” sized HiTech) and a lightweight Velbon tripod (that I discussed a few posts back). The GX1 was a replacement for my 5D and the LX5 was a sort of point and shoot experimental camera with which to explore ideas.  The GX1 and 3 lenses weighs less than the 5D body but the big surprise was how much I used the LX5; I literally couldn’t put it down.

What a joy it was packing such a limited amount of equipment. There was far less than usual and everything I needed fitted in a small Low Pro slingshot bag. This allowed me to walk around all day on the beach, easily access my equipment and not need to put the bag down on the sand. In the past this has been a problem with the bag ending up with sand in it, not to mention the neck pain due to hanging a heavy camera round it.

In the end I enjoyed the photography much more than usual as I was free to more around with ease due to the small camera size. I felt very fresh through the day so was more prepared to put up with the very cold conditions. I was also able to shoot quite late into the day without the need for my tripod. I was even shooting handheld with the LX5 well after the sun had set (not that you could see the sun yesterday afternoon) but I will speak about that another day.

Lightweight only days are definitely going to be a feature of my future trips and I’m now wondering if it’s worth retiring the 5D.

8 thoughts on “My GX1 Lightweight Trip

    visionandlight said:
    December 4, 2012 at 1:08 pm

    Couldn’t agree more. I spent an afternoon doing beach photography with the GX1 on Saturday – what a difference from lugging a heavy outfit around! Having a complete kit in a small shoulder bag was a delight, and as you say, there is no need to constantly put it down in wet sand. I was able to stand ankle deep in seawater and still access my bag, and when the tide came in (quickly!) there was no rushing about to rescue my kit before it drowned. Although I was using a small carbon fibre tripod, even this felt like overkill for many shots.

      thelightweightphotographer responded:
      December 4, 2012 at 8:20 pm

      Hi Ed, I forgot you were off to the beach. Sounds like you have embraced the lightweight lifestyle. Would you care to share the story of one of your previous beach trips with the readers? There was only a hint of that lesson in your comment. Great to see you enthusing over your photography again.

        visionandlight said:
        December 6, 2012 at 12:03 am

        Beach photography lesson no. 1: Always keep your camera bag zipped up.
        Lesson no. 2: Never leave it unattended when there are waves coming up to your waist!

        thelightweightphotographer responded:
        December 6, 2012 at 1:01 pm

        Thanks Ed, a salutary reminder for us all about the dangers of beach photography. I think I still have the copy of Outdoor Photographer that this (and your images of course) appeared in.

    Joe waskiw said:
    December 7, 2012 at 5:35 pm

    Amazes me how soft people are today. Can’t carry a bag with a 35mm camera film or digital and two prime fast lenses.

    What is the matter with you people. My school bag, forty years ago was ten times the weight of my camera kit.

    Grow up !

    Joe

      thelightweightphotographer responded:
      December 7, 2012 at 8:54 pm

      Thanks for your view Joe. I have spent enough years climbing mountains with a heavy backpack to realise lightweight kit was a smart move. As for growing up – I hope it never happens.

        Petra said:
        February 3, 2013 at 4:05 pm

        🙂

      Petra said:
      February 3, 2013 at 4:08 pm

      Has nothing to do with can or can´t. Just because you can doesn´t mean you have to like it. A hobby is about doing what you like.

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