Travelling for a year as a photographer
On the 7th January 2019 I set off from London and landed 19 hours later in Bogota, Colombia, beginning a year of travelling which would take me to fifteen countries on two continents. I learned a lot about what is and what isn’t needed and I’m going to discuss this here. Succumbing to what is known as Gear Acquisition Syndrome, I’d traded in my beloved Xpro 2 and lenses for a Medium format Fujifilm GFX50s. I was about to have the trip of a lifetime and I intended to capture this in the best quality possible. I’d already given the newly acquired GFX a run out in Patagonia on a short break, and even carrying one lens I knew this was going to take some getting used to. I’d picked up a 110mm in addition to the 32-64, all in all I was landing in South America with some weighty kit.
Throughout four months of travel in South America I used the camera every day, as I found myself in locations that were magnificent, the weight not so much of a concern as I wasn’t doing as much spur of the moment photography, and more measured landscapes, mountains and wilderness. I did notice that I was drawn to the longer 110mm lens, preferring to tightly frame rather than shoot wide with lots of negative space.
After South America I then hit Southeast Asia was and this is where I would have preferred a smaller camera, and in fact picked up a Fuji XE3 and couple of small primes. The landscapes are interesting on this continent but nowhere near the as exciting for me as the Andes. I spent more time in cities during the Asian part of my year out, and the small alleyways teaming with life were the hotspots where I really wanted a small, quick camera, so the XE3 with 23mm and 35mm was used lots more than the medium format behemoth.