Welcome to 5 reasons I enjoy using Lumix cameras for landscape photography
We all ask that question is mirrorless an option I should switch my gear over too? It's a constant question people ask me all the time. There are so many benefits when shooting with mirrorless and I would like to share 5 of them with you today.
1, Weight is a huge factor. When I travel I walk out the door with my laptop bag, inside it contains 4 lenses and 2 camera bodies. The set up I have is the Lumix G9, G85, 12mm 1.4, 12-35mm f2.8, 35-100mm f2.8 and the 100-400mm. I can tell you that in my small laptop bag I still have room for a GPS, MacBook Pro and a pile of chargers and cables. The combined weight of all my gear is the same as a Nikon D500 with a battery grip and a 200-500 lens. I know we are talking about landscape photography right now but I did include my 100-400 lens with my Lumix gear. We will talk more about why I have a telephoto lens included in my bag a little tater.
This is my bag below, its dimensions are 440 x 200 x 290mm. Just to give you some perspective as to how small my camera bag is now. Here is a link to Vanguard
2, I don't always need a tripod. As long as I don't plan to shoot long exposures or time-lapse photography I leave my tripod at home. The new Lumix cameras have 5 axis in body stabilization, pair that with a lens that has stabilization it can give me a total of 7 stops. Can you imagine traveling without a tripod? I can't trust that airlines will be careful with my suitcase after watching them bomb it around, falling off luggage carts at full speeds or being thrown on a convayer. Plus the damage my suitcase has had in the past proves a carbon fibre tripod would be crushed when I get to the other end of my travels. So when I travel I attach it to my camera bag via straps. Only problem is I have to take the tripod off the bag before I put my bag in the overhead. This always has a lovely reaction of 10 eye daggers looking at you as I try to fit everything in a small overhead bin.
I have also found the stabilization to be exceptional when photographing from a boat. Between people moving around and the smallest of waves you know what its like shooting with a telephoto lens. I have also been able to take super stable video at 1/60th of a second handheld when we are doing 30-40 knots.
- 3, Use telephoto lenses for landscapes. I don't want to keep talking about the weight factor but I have to. My go to lens set up when I'm driving around is the Lumix 35-100 f2.8 this would be the 35mm equivalent of a 70-200 lens. This lens on the G85 fits perfectly in any centre console, or as my girlfriend cals it, the snack box. I have found in my travels that I prefer the isolation shot in landscapes vs the wide angle look. I find this look helps me to isolate layers in my images, work with landscapes that don't have pulling foregrounds or dull sky's. Sometimes you can only get so close to a landscape without a one day hike. Using the 100-400 or 35mm equivalent at 200-800 allows me to really isolate landscapes far off in the distance. Next time you go out try to only bring one lens and see how creative you can be with just a telephoto lens.
- 4, Use an adapter for other lenses. I for one enjoy shooting with native Lumix glass, I could not ask for sharper lenses that are light weight. But for some of you that are considering switching to a mirrorless system and don't want that extra cost factor of lens purchases you could always get a Metabones adapter. Many people in the film industry love to use Lumix cameras such as the GH4, GH5 and now the GH5s. Some prefer to use the older retro lenses for a different cinematic look. Or they like the look from the newer Nikon and Canon lenses. These adapters allow you to convert all those lenses to be used on Lumix bodies. Check out their website www.metabones.com
- 5, Don't always take your images from the same height. A great feature of the Lumix cameras I shoot with is the articulating flip screen. This allows me complete view of the back LCD screen no mater what angle I need to set my camera up at. When I look through many photographers images you start to notice that they always shoot images from the same height. This tends to be about head hight, weather its on a tripod or handheld. Be creative with a wide angle lens, get close to the ground and show those elements. With Lumix you can change all your settings right on the back screen all by touch, you don't have to use any of the conventional dials if you don't want to. Use telephoto lenses as we talked earlier to create isolation, this makes a new perspectives to your landscape portfolio.