An Experiment


I am currently assembling my Best of 2016 (yes - a year late) to follow up my Best of 2017.  Straddling the two years was a two week long trip to Europe for the Holidays.  We had always wanted to see Europe dressed up for the holidays so we went, spending time in Prague, Bolzano, Innsbruck, Bruges and The Hague.

This was my eight time to Europe.  The first three trips were on business and though I brought my SLR and plenty of Plus X or Kodachrome film, shooting wasn't the primary focus of the trip.  The most recent two visits involved graduation trips for nephews and while I brought my camera with me, my primary focus was entertaining others, not shooting.  This trip was all about Jenny and I enjoying each others company during a trip to remember our 10 year anniversary.

Of course I brought my gear, but after day one of dragging it around I realized I was in jeopardy of not enjoying the trip as much as I had hoped I would.  So on day two I tried a different approach.  I left the gear at the hotel.  Yes I took pictures, but I did so using only the camera in my Note 4.  I soon found myself enjoying the experience more, living in the moment of each day.  Each evening I collected images onto a Smugmug gallery chronicling the day's adventure.  I added extensive captions to images within the galleries and as I posted links for friends back home to follow our trip, we found people were enjoying them as much as we were enjoying the trip.  Should you be interested in this chronicle, Click this link and scroll down to where the destination galleries begin.  It may be a bit much for a single sitting.

It has always been said, great pictures can be taken with the most modest of cameras.  I believe in this wholeheartedly.  I have friends who do tremendous work using only a smart phone and a handful of clip on lens adapters.  As I was thinking back at the images I took during this time, I wondered how they may stack up artistically compared to pictures I might have taken with my regular gear.  So I went through the galleries and put together a subset, selected for less a story telling editorial and more for compositional appeal.  Any editing was done via the Aviary app on my phone.  No other post processing.  Of course the phone will never be as versatile nor have the resolution of a full bag of gear, but I do think it reinforces the point:  Good pictures can be captured with all types of cameras.  A slideshow of the gallery is below - I hope you find something to enjoy within it.