Ethical Considerations - Light and Landscape Magazine

For those of you who didn't get a chance to read my latest article 'Ethical Considerations' for Light and Landscape magazine, issue 8, you can now read it here. You will find screenshots from the magazine below.  

take care and have a Happy Easter weekend!

James

 

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Australia and New Zealand

Hi,

Let me first wish you a Happy New Year and I hope you had a great time over the festive period. For me it was something new this year. It was the first time that I've ever been away on holiday over Christmas and New Year and also my first time on a cruise ship. It was both a holiday and a delayed honeymoon for my wife and I after our wedding in the early part of last year. We had an unbelievable time on board the "Celebrity Solstice" and in the process visited some truly astounding places around Australia and New Zealand.

This trip was a great time to relax and refresh ready for whatever this year brings, but at the same time you cannot possibly visit a place like New Zealand and leave your camera at home. As I sit here now in my office and load the memory cards onto my laptop I'm already very excited to see some of the photographs that I made and I will of course, share them with you soon.

I went on the trip with a couple of bodies of work in mind as we saw a wide variety of places. As soon as I can I will start forming the photographs into these mini projects and begin to share them with you. As with all good holidays though we soon enough return to the reality of heading back to work. For me it begins tomorrow so it will take me a few weeks to get through the photographs and share them with you so please be patient in the meantime. 

For now I'll leave you with a single sneak preview of one of the most majestic places on the planet. The World Heritage listed 'Milford Sound' in New Zealand. I cannot possibly put into words what I was thinking as we entered this part of New Zealand's Fjord-land National Park, although playing the theme music from the movie 'Jurassic Park' would be a very appropriate backing track! The weather was icy cold from the Antarctic winds that meet the South West part of New Zealand's South Island. At the early hours of the morning this weather draped the sheer rock faces in spectacular mist and fog.

take care for now,

James

Milford Sound, New Zealand (Fuji X100T)

Creative constraints

As any photographer will know, planning what gear to take for a trip or holiday can be a bit of a headache. We like to travel but we also like to have all of our gear to hand. The problem with this is that we end up with too much gear, weighing us down to the point that it tires us and becomes a burden.

I'm very much that photographer. I like to have everything I could possibly need with me at all times. I'm also like this in my everyday life. This is why I can mostly be seen wearing cargo style shorts. Big pockets = more room for stuff that I might need!

I'm about to go away on holiday to New Zealand so choosing and packing my gear is very much on my mind. I've spent the last couple of weeks making a list of all my lenses and filters and other stuff that I will more than likely want and need for the work that I'm planning to produce. There's a lot there and even though I have a fairly small and light mirrorless system now, it's still going to be heavy by the time I carry everything on the list.

When I plan a trip or a shoot, I like to set myself a creative constraint in order to help me think differently about how to approach the work and also to flex my photographic creativity and skill. This trip is going to be no different. After a lot of thought and consideration I've decided to travel light this time, really light. I will be travelling with only my Fuji x100t and a couple of filters. The fuji x100t* is an extraordinary camera that every photographer should own. It's a small, fixed focal length (35mm equivalent) camera that you can fit in your pocket. It's perfect for travel, for portraits, for all different types of work. Many pro's swear by them, for example Zack Arias who recently said if all of his gear was to be taken from him then all he would want left would be his x100 cameras. It produces gorgeous photographs, aided by fuji's film simulation modes which were designed based on the film rolls that fuji used to make.

By using a single camera with a single focal length it will force me to be more aware of my composition, my proximity to my subject. It will force me to think outside the box and think creatively about how I photograph. Also it's such a lightweight kit that it won't be hard work or tiring to carry it around all day, thus allowing me to stay fresher and be more receptive to my surroundings. It's going to be quite different from my usual kit that I carry and a challenge for sure but I'm very excited about it. I think the results will be facinating and I'm looking forward to sharing them with you on my return. My kit list, for the nerds among you is as follows:

 

Think Tank Retrospective 7 Bag

Glanz 110cm 5 in 1 reflector

Fuji x100t camera

Fuji WCL-x100 wide angle lens converter

Binoculars

X-rite Color Checker Passport

Lens pen and blower

Gorillapod mini tripod

49mm Kenko circular polarising filter

A couple of spare batteries and charger

Lee Seven5 Soft Grad ND filters (0.3/0.6/0.9)

Lee Filter holder

Think Tank memory card holder with 6 16GB SDHC cards

 A couple of lens cloths

iPod

Notebook and pen

 

Finally it's time for me to wish you a very Merry Christmas and a fantastic New Year celebration. I may post the occaisional photograph from my trip as we go, depending on the wifi situation. Apart from that I've nothing more to say other than I'll see you in 2015!

Best wishes,

James

My travel kit, ready to pack.

My travel kit, ready to pack.

* There are actually now 3 cameras in the x100 series, the first generation x100, the x100s and the most recently released x100t.