SHOOTING STOCK WITH AN OLYMPUS OM-D E-M10 + 14-42mm, 25mm, 45mm, 75mm lenses in a small camera bag

OLYMPUS OM-D E-M5 14-42mm. 25mm. 45mm and 75mm m.ZUIKO m4/3 lenses

OLYMPUS OM-D E-M5 14-42mm. 25mm. 45mm and 75mm m.ZUIKO m4/3 lenses

DATE

16/OCTOBER/2014

LOCATION

Charlecote Park Estate Warwickshire UK

 

GEAR USED

Olympus OM-D E-M10 camera, 14-42mm Zoom, 25mm f/1.8, 45mm f/1.8, 75mm f/1.8 m.ZUIKO lenses. 

THE LOCATION

Charlecote Park is a stately home and estate with extensive ground not far from Stratford-upon-Avon. At this particular time of year it's a source of seasonal pictures and also has a large display of autumnal, 'harvest festival' type produce.

WHAT I CHOSE AND WHY I CHOSE IT

This is a great outfit. One camera, four lenses and a couple of spare batteries in a small camera bag. For me what m4/3 was all about and is still all about. I can understand and even applaud both Olympus and Panasonic attempting to make inroads into the pro / enthusiast / serious hobbyist marketplace, but for me I'm glad they haven't just restricted themselves to that and jumped up compact cameras. This small, classy, fast prime type outfit is what I personally wanted to see when I started using a Panasonic Lumix G1 all those years ago. 

Because for me the bottom line is, if I want an interchangeable lens 'professional' system then I might still be inclined to look somewhere else. Even with the improvements in high(er) ISO I've been outlining in my Olympus OM-D E-M10 review, there are still advantages for me in terms of bigger sensors and cameras with more MP's. And despite the lens selection and heavyweight issues of my Sony FE and Nikon DSLR cameras, that's probably what I would choose. For the sheer quality of image in the case of my Sony A7r and the shoot anything, anywhere, anytime in any light capability of my Nikon Df.

But when I want to travel light, work fast, be inconspicuous and still have quality lens options available to me and a relatively speedy operation, the above outfit is difficult to beat. And when I went out out a couple of days ago, I used all four lenses. 

Olympus OM-D E-M10 camera, 14-42mm Zoom, 25mm f/1.8, 45mm f/1.8, 75mm f/1.8 m.ZUIKO lenses. 

We are currently experiencing a spell of unseasonably warm weather where I live, but this is accompanied by a fair amount of cloud. So my afternoon out concentrated more on details rather than landscape and location images. I've indicated before that is is important to have a seasonal element to stock photography images, to have pictures available to picture editors looking to make their articles reflect the time of year. However because of the weather, this year the golden oranges, reds and yellows are somewhat late, so I'm tending to concentrate on other things until that arrives. 

This is exactly why stock photographers have to be flexible and prepared to look for the pictures that work on a given day, with a certain light, in the location they are in. I learnt years ago that planning to take certain shots in specific places was always liable to be sabotaged by the weather, building work and that unexpected event, so I'm always making a quick assessment of what I'm going to be shooting when I arrive at a location. And since I don't carry all my gear and a range of lenses from a 12mm to a 400mm telephoto, I have to work within the limits of what I have and in fact make it appear that I didn't in fact have any limits and selected exactly the right lens(es) for where I was. 

Because it's important to remember that photography is about a point of view and creating and making images rather than just simply recording what's going on. So it's important to develop that '3rd. eye' that experienced photographers develop. The one that's located inside our brains and can spot a potential photograph from the clutter that we see in front of us. I've developed a certain facility to do this over the years and if you watch me work you would see me changing lenses on my way to where I'm going to 'make a picture.' And since I've used prime lenses most of my photographic life, I'm well used to them. 

I do however use primes when I've got the time to think about what I want to use. No matter where I am, I never think 'I need this lens for the shot here.' It's more like 'What will this lens give me?' Plus if I'm using primes or a zoom, I'll take different shots with different focal lengths. I've written before how I treat each stock shoot as a 'photo-essay' with an imaginary travel article running through my head. Not to try and second guess an editor but to come home with a coherent set of pictures that document a certain place at a certain time. 

But I make sure that I shoot all these pictures from my point of view, in the way that I want using what I think is appropriate from the gear I have with me. And though I would never describe myself as having a certain style, there are certainly ways of composing images that I'm comfortable with. However, it is important to work outside my comfort zone whenever I can. Use a different lens, or even use just one lens and try and push myself to come up with something different from my own personal 'run of the mill.' And that's why I usually never take the same camera / lens combination out with me two days running. Yes I realise that not everybody has that option, but if you do it is important to see how gear choices can affect your creativity. Because after all, photography is an art form and though we may not create images that live up to that most of the time, we surely owe it to ourselves to try. 

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Many Thanks

David Taylor-Hughes

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