Easter Shenanigans

Easter has passed for another year, and now we approach Anzac Day, and winter.  This long weekend I had Tae come down from Brisbane to stay, and as Tae was over, so was Chilli, who was a great companion until yesterday when she decided eating grass and dry plants around the house was a good idea.  Luckily I blocked off carpeted areas, knowing the signs, and she only spewed on the wooden floors.

Moving on from that unpleasantness, the weekend was decidedly lazy, mixed with some important study as I worked to complete a late assignment for ‘Indigenous World-views’.  Ultimately, I submitted that last night, with just over half the required words, but I could do no more.

I’ve done a lot of reading up on camera gear, as I work to firm up the gear I use and travel with.  I currently have two main lenses and two main camera bodies.  My beloved 100mm F/2.8L Macro, which I’m using more and more as a general purpose lens as it’s my longest lens.  I also have a 40mm F/2.8 “pancake” that’s been suggested as the lens I should use in a general purpose role.

My biggest issue right now however is deciding two things.  Firstly, if I need to expand to a Wide Angle or Ultra Wide Angle lens to supplement the 40mm.  This would allow more content to be ‘in frame’.  But as I look at those sorts of lenses, I start to wonder if I should take things right to the limit and choose a fisheye instead.  I’m not looking for distortions specifically, and certainly not keen on the ‘circular effect’, but have seen many examples on the web of mildly distorted images that work really well for land- and cityscapes (like I’ll encounter on holiday).  On that note I have been recommended the Samyang 8mm F/3.5, manual lens, as it’s cheap but of good quality, to save me the expense of the Canon 8-15mm F/4L, but I really need to have a play rather than judge it based on no real-world use.

Secondly, I quite like aviation and wildlife photography, something you can’t get too close to.  Having tried a cheap 75-300mm F/4-5.6 and experienced the CA (chromatic aberration – a failure to focus colours, generally at the edges of objects in images) and lack of IQ (image quality)  I know that you have to pay for quality.  The lens I’ve been looking at is the 300mm F/4L IS, rated as the best telephoto lens for the price.  Yes, a zoom would give better range, but similar zooms cost more and offer less extended range, which is what I think I need.  Do I need it?

I guess my main agenda should be to equip myself appropriately for my holiday, as I’m not going bird- or plane-spotting while on holiday.  After that, I can consider developing that other aspect of my photography.

In other news, no more flights till the end of May for me… I’m not sure how I’ll survive!  Haha.

Author: Sam Heathfield

I'm 29, live on the Gold Coast and have a passion for aviation and Qantas. Currently studying.