I recently returned from 2 weeks in Paris; thankfully a few days before the attacks! I thought I’d report on the photography aspects of the trip. Since I’ve been to Paris several times before, I didn’t need much advance research on the city, it’s sights, getting around, etc. Other than a list of places we wanted to revisit, there was no planned itinerary. We’d wing it pretty much day by day. That left packing as the primary advance-planning chore. Obviously I’d take my main camera, batteries (I have 3), chargers (I have 2), SD cards (3 32 GB, 1 16 GB), a blower, a couple cleaning cloths, and the camera manual. The big decision was what lens or lenses to take. I considered what I’d be shooting: architecture, cityscapes, street captures, maybe people, night shots, indoors (museums, shops, restaurants). I nixed the 70-300mm as not appropriate. The 50mm, f/1.4 is fast but not versatile. I’d just gotten a new lens (16-50mm, f/2) less than a month before and hadn’t yet become familiar with it. I was eager to give it a try. My previous favorite walk around lens was an 18-200mm, f/3.5-5.6. Not really fast enough but would I miss the longer zoom range? I decided to make the 16-50mm the one I’d put on the camera. I packed the 18-200mm just in case. To carry it all, I chose a medium size sling pack. It’s not designed for cameras but it’s comfy. It slings across the body over one shoulder and can be worn on your back or up front. This would be my personal item to take on the plane as well as a carry-all walking around the city. At this point it was getting full since it also had to carry about half of what I usually tote around in my purse. Here’s where all you mirrorless shooters can gloat with your compact systems! Question was, do I need a spare camera? I decided there wasn’t room for it space or weight wise. I stuck the circular polarizers in for each lens, a small reflector and a sunshade (it adds a bit of shade where the lens hood leaves off). To tripod or not to tripod? That was the next question. I have a nice compact one. Sure, take it. I can carry it out at night for night shots. I put it in my carry-on. I had to be responsible for one large checked bag, a carry-on duffel-like bag and my “camera bag”. I was maxed out.
Hartford to Newark, Newark to Paris.
Stay tuned for Part 2.