Thursday, September 07, 2017

The Second Shooter

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I had though a lot about which camera (or camera body) to take as my backup on my Kimberley Cruise, the latest of my Endless Summer trips. The logical choice was my old Pentax K100 body, if was just for backup and it takes the other lenses I was carrying. In the past an important aspects is it takes 4 standard AA batteries (which can be bought almost anywhere, even on cruise boats!), if power to recharge batteries wasn’t available. I carry spare recharged batteries and they last several days so that is seldom and issue. Instead I choose to take my trusty old Canon Rebel (EOS 1100D), which was basically my work camera used in mines and for making training videos (it has decent quality video except for the sound). Its pretty light and plastic and whilst I have had two lenses fail it has taken the rough and tumble well. With a small zip bag of accessories I planned to put in my art kit backpack. Storing it, with lenses detached, in my computer backpack on airline flights. Well that was the theory.

This last minute inclusion became my main camera in a lot of situations. The reason was a cheap wrist strap and sling system I bought just before the trip. I love the wrist strap! I have always hated the camera maker supplied neck straps! What proved invaluable clambering over rocks, landing on mudflats and beaches in the Kimberley was the over shoulder sling. Just a word of warning to use this style of sling you must be happy for the camera to hang upside down at your side. This leaves your hands free to do the climbing and support stuff with the camera with the lens aligned beside you body just above your hip is safely out of the action (you should adjust to find the safest most comfortable spot using the clips on the strap accordingly).  Rather than sticking out in front of your chest, which in many situations is in harms way. I tended to leave my bulkier Pentax in its camera bag, which was awkward and sometimes inconvenient in rock hoping situations. It was thus left behind in many landings and zodiac trips. The camera and I where safe hanging on my side but I could also quickly grab the camera in one hand, lift it to my eye focus and take a photo. With the result that a lot of my better photos where taken with this second shooter.

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