To all the ships at sea,
If you’re anywhere near the East coast, you’ll know that it was beautiful. Then it got cold, then brutally cold, and then the ice came. Well last spring I packaged up all of my winter garb and I put it someplace. Did I write it down in the computer? No. Did i put a label on it? no. Did I put it in the same place? No. I found it, but I found it very, very late. In photography, I’ll tell you “standardization and simplification” – simple, clean, elegant. Also, repeatability. You should be able to go to your insurance shot and as soon as that’s done you should be able to throw caution to the wind and be able to do some crazy fun stuff. Oh yeah you’ve gotta have fun with it. Its all about fun and hopefully generating a new image, or maybe new just for you. New hasn’t been done in 40 years. So when it comes to protecting the cameras, we do that. Or I do it. Make sure they’re all in the trunk so that they’re all the same temp as outside. Tripods, the same thing. Clothes, the same thing. Three, four, five layers. Headgear, eargear, nosegear and gloves. Well, I couldn’t find my stuff so I borrowed some of JoAnne’s scarves and stuff. Not good. The lesson is pretty simple. Repeatability- put it in the same damn place all the time and if you think you’re gonna meed it in January then get it ready in September. Attached are a few photos… yes, I found my stuff. Want to know where it was? The last place I looked! It’s always in the last place I look, think about it.
Everybody knows that I’m a Canon photographer, so I very rarely get specific about a camera and a lens. In this particular case I’m going to talk a little but about it, I took out my Canon 5D Mark IV, the 100-400 zoom, a relatively midrange Gitzo carbon fiber tripod, two batteries and two extra cards. That’s it, nothing else other than my trusty cell phone. When climbing on the ice, you really want to have a cell phone with you. What I forgot was that the night before I had a house guest and that he plugged his phone into my charger. Where am I going with this? Well, you know where I’m going with this. It starts to snow and it snows very heavily. I’m not paying attention, I’m just shooting. I’m not making excuses, I’m just explaining. I looked down and the camera was covered in a beautiful coating of white snow and the lens had white snow. It was kind of a pretty picture. Then I looked down to see my itsy bitsy camera bag covered in snow. I reached into my pocket to take a photograph with my iPhone and up popped a thermometer saying “aint gonna happen fella, you dont got enough juice.” It’s one of those snapshots that I have in my brain but not in my other camera- get it? My other camera? I believe an iPhone is a phone, not a camera… other people, not so much. Again, preproduction is the key to a successful shoot. This includes gloves, mittens, scarves, batteries and yes, a cell phone- if I had fallen, I would have needed that phone for more than just taking a snapshot of the snow falling down on the camera and the lens. Don’t leave anything to chance. Remember- Murphy is sitting on a rock waiting for you.
Hope to see you on the road again,