Category: Peru

Opportunities and Gear

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Lately I have been reviewing my older images to see what I liked best and thinking about how to increase my opportunities for making more such images.  The above is one of my favorite images.  I made it back in 2001 using an inexpensive small pocket Olympus film camera in Peru.  I lost the negatives a long time ago and all I have left are small scans of the 4×6 drug store prints that I had printed after the trip.  What makes the picture so great isn’t the camera or processing.  It was my being able to grab a quick shot of an unstaged composition in which everything came together perfectly to make an excellent establishing shot.  The row of buildings you see in the distance is the entrance to Machu Picchu in Peru and then the walk across the terrace to arrive at the ruins.

As the years have gone by I have switched to better and better cameras (lots of them) with increasing complexity, size, and cost without really increasing the number of pictures that I am most proud of.  No doubt, my later images have been more technically perfect, but what good is that if I don’t make images that I prefer and have fun making.

In the last many months I have been working on returning to the use of smaller cameras and lenses in order to lighten the load.  That has meant dropping from Fujifilm gear back down to Olympus micro 4/3 cameras for my Homewood images.  I am also using my reduced, in number, set of micro 4/3 cameras and lenses for my personal imagery, but I wanted to go even smaller, lighter, and simpler with my walkabout gear.  To accomplish that downsizing I have gone back to a small rugged waterproof pocket camera.  I purchased an Olympus TG-6 camera to replace the Ricoh WG-60 and the Canon G5X Mark II cameras.  I hope to move out more often and further with the TG-6 even though I won’t be traveling internationally; i.e., I have traded gear for mobility and hopefully more opportunities.

Some will interpret my changes in gear as sacrificing gear for opportunities, but I’m not so sure about the sacrificing bit.  In my opinion I have found that the Olympus TG series of cameras are quite flexible and capable so I see this as just another challenge to see what I can make with the TG-6 in the future.

My next step is to wait on warmer weather and then go back out walking around home and see what I can find to photograph; but, I really am missing buying and trying different types of cameras.  I got into the habit of buying new cameras and lenses for each international trip I took.  My love of travel morphed into an obsession with photography gear.

On the Amazon River in 2006

We took a river cruise on the Amazon River 13 years ago.  Looking at the pictures recently, it occurred to me that I am still wearing the same Tilley hat.  I took a picture of it hanging on my door recently.

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When we were on the river in the heat and humidity, the camera I used was a small Sony DSC-W7, 7.2MP digital camera that used AA batteries and only had 3x zoom.  I had to take great pains to keep it from fogging up due to the differences in the temperature and humidity between our cabin and the outside and the rain, that happened frequently.  If I were to repeat that trip now, which I would like to do, I would just take and use my Olympus TG-5 camera, the one I used to take the recent picture of the same hat I wore on the river.  Yes, I would take the TG-5 rather than one of my two WR Fujifilm cameras and longer WR zoom lens.  The small size of the TG-5 would be worth it when getting in and out of small boats every day, especially since it is waterproof, not just weather resistant.

Nazca Lines of Plum Creek

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Nazca Lines of Homewood at Plum Creek.  I made this image from a picture of our driveway.  The lines were made by snow plows last winter.

It was more fun to photograph the Nazca Lines from the air when we were in Peru in 2006.

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I just read some more about the Nazca Lines in Peru in Wikipedia.  They have found even more of them since we were there, but they still aren’t sure of why they were made.

I don’t think I posted my aerial pictures of the Nazca Lines so I might reprocess the pictures using the latest version of LR CC and post some of them.

Ruthless River

I enjoyed this book.  It reminded me of my two trips into the Amazon.  This book is a memoir about a young couple who were traveling in South America in the 1970s.  I’d like to go back, but I would need a fellow traveler who likes heat, humidity, and insects.  I would like to take a better camera the next time; but, I was amazed by the pictures Holly took with a film camera.  You would also be amazed that the pictures and camera survived the trip after their plane crashed and they went down the river on a balsa raft.

Old Small Pictures

I took some pictures in 2001 in Peru with a small film camera.  I have since lost the negatives and prints and digital files that were made from scans.  All that I have left are the images in my blog and they are only 800 pixels in the longest dimension.

I have been continuing to see what I could do with them and have made a couple of color prints that are now on my wall; but I continue to see if I can make them better.  This morning I tried B&W and I think I like these better.

You have to consider that they were originally 35mm film negatives that were printed and then scanned and then downsized to put in my blog and then extracted from Word Press.com and then converted to B&W and then upsized to 8×10 at 300 pixels per inch and then reduced again for use in my blog as you see them above.  Ridiculous isn’t it, but since it is unlikely that I will ever go back to get better images, this is the best that I have been able to do so far.  I may go back and rework the whole set of them since I think this style of B&W fits the old architecture.