If I am not going to sell the Pentax DSLR and lenses, I would like to get back to using them. I made these test images at the 300mm focal length setting of the 55-300mm lens. I continued using it as I had in the past, shooting raw files and then processing them in Lightroom Classic.
I wasn’t happy with processing them since my computer was really running slow thus dragging out the processing and seemingly taking forever. After every movement of a slider I had to wait for the effect to take place.
The only good thing was being able to expand my photography beyond what I can do with the Fuji X100V.
I used my Pentax KP camera with the inexpensive, lightweight, weather resistant 18-55mm kit lens using the “P” mode to make this image. I like the ease of using this setup and I like the way the raw files work-up in the LR software. I also like the large hand grip (it comes with three different size hand grips) and the weather resistance and the light weight for a DSLR camera. I therefore intend to continue using this camera for my personal photography as well as for my outdoor Homewood photography. You don’t see or read much about Pentax cameras anymore, but I don’t know why. They are still one of the best buys in cameras. My only problem is finding enough subjects to photograph.
I tried a variety of photographs yesterday morning as I was experimenting with what I can do with the 55-300mm lens. It looks like I will be able to make most of my outdoor images with this lens, providing I find anything worth photographing. Since I am not photographing indoor activities at Homewood while we are locked down, it means that I can do all of my photography with my Pentax KP DSLR camera. It seems to have taken a major calamity to enable me to finally do everything with one camera, and not with a mirrorless camera at that. Since I’m not photographing close to people, I don’t need the silence of a mirrorless camera, and the Pentax DSLR system has smaller lighter lenses that cover the range from 18 – 300mm (effective 28 – 450mm with its APS size sensor).
Notice that I said I can do all of my photography with a Pentax DSLR. I like to have the flexibility to document whatever I see that might be of interest to the residents of Homewood. In addition, I can make images like those above with the same setup; but, a DSLR and a long zoom lens are not what I would prefer to use. If I could do what I prefer, I would be using a mirrorless rangefinder like camera with just an equivalent 35 or 50mm prime lens. If I were still traveling, I would like to use just a prime lens to photograph different country scenes as well as people in their daily environments … no zoom lenses, and no camera bag. I would like to use that setup to make long-form documentaries about issues of interest to me.
But, there is a wide gap between what subjects there are to photograph that I can make, and what I would like to do; but, I am OK with using my Pentax DSLR and documenting things around Homewood as well as making images similar to those above which are fun to process. I can, at times, even use my 35mm macro lens on the KP along with my zoom lenses and be happy with my Pentax camera. I don’t know yet, but maybe my “new normal” mode of photography after we get the virus under control will continue to be just using a Pentax setup; i.e., my one and only “back to the future” camera system.
Before I decide whether to switch back to Pentax gear I need to decide on what focal lengths I would likely want and see if Pentax has the lenses I want. Since 40mm is the longest focal length I have at the moment, I took a picture of the trees on the horizon with that limited 20-40mm lens. Note the trees in the center of the first picture that are furthest away. The second picture is a crop from that center portion of the first picture that I then up-sized to make the version you are looking at. See the birds in the trees? Now I have an idea of how much zoom-cropping I can do.
I made this check as I was trying to decide whether to get a zoom lens or the 70mm limited prime lens. Based on this check and some ideas of what I might be photographing, I decided to try the 70mm prime lens. My thinking is that I might do some of my walkabout and Homewood photography with the 70mm lens and the camera-lens combination wouldn’t be too heavy.