Heading Out For A Road Trip

I have been going a bit stir crazy lately. Too much of the same scenery, same people, too much of the same, same, same. Combine that with a little tiny bit of the despair I usually feel as summer comes to an end and I just have to get away. I have too much going on to go anywhere really really far so I decided to head to Washington DC for a few days next week starting Sept 19 and staying through the weekend. If you know anyone around the area definitely let them know I am looking for people to shoot with and make some cool stuff for fun.

Seems perfect timing and not too far. Actually from me it's not far at all. Somewhere around an hour or so to get there or with traffic 3 hours… Hmmm I hate driving in or near DC. So I am not going to drive. That will make it much more fun. I am doing the train thing which will also limit how much photo-crap I am willing to lug. Not a bad constraint. When I am self mobile I definitely tend to fill whatever vehicle I own with so much what-if or just-in-case gear it's silly. This will be only what I am willing to lug on my own person… Not very much.

So before I get into the lugging here's the whole timing part in addition to my mood. I have been telling Carly, pictured above, that I absolutely positively will get down to visit before the summer is over. She's running a small studio/location this summer in DC just for doing the kind of photo stuff I happen to be interested in at the moment. Oooops - guess I got kind of distracted. Turns out she's outta there for a month or so and out to the west coast (lemmie know if any west coast peeps want to shoot with her - will give you her contact info) and I have put my foot down - I will go check this place out - NOW.

Now what am I willing to carry? I have about a week to decide but here's what I am thinking right now…

  • As camera gear goes I am absolutely limiting it to one Domke F2 Bag and that's it. Now the hard part. What goes inside.
  • Fuji X100S for sure, have you seen the price on those things for months on Amazon - you have to be insane to pay that much.
  • The D600 mostly for backup but also if I want more of a 50mm/short-tele kinda feel. My real plan is to use the Fuji for everything but I am way too tightly wound to just commit. Maybe next little trip if shooting the X100S goes well. The batteries in that camera scare the hell out of me. Almost unpredictable in terms of life, definitely very short, a power switch witch seems to have a mind of it's own, and crazy long charge times. I honestly don't feel like I can do a whole day of shooting with my 3 batteries. Well I am not confident yet.
  • The lens question seems to be easy enough. My 50 1.4G AFS absolutely. My ancient but trusty wonderful, light, and awesomely cheap 85mm 1.8 AF-D and no big heavy pro-zooms. Nada, none. They are like anchors. The only think I am waffling back and forth on is my luxury crazy lens, the Nikon 105DC f/2. We'll see - if I bring that why would I do the 85 and vis versa??? Not a big issue either way. I am going to try my best to just decide on which one and not both. Will let you know how that turns out.
  • Now for the real conundrum… To strobe or not to strobe. My heart is telling me to just skip it. Just do ambient/available. That's what my heart is telling me but I have this nagging other voice telling me to jamb a couple of SB-800's in the F2 bag… Hmmm but then what about stands? Triggers? Modifiers? No way - no stands or modifiers. I will have to get really creative with none of that shit. Then again this location Carly is running has real flash heads and stands and… maybe just the speedlights and triggers. But I really want to just skip all that for this outing. Grrrr this is troubling. Will keep you guys updated - heck give me your two cents.

Obviously I have to have a bit more luggage. I am going minimal. A couple of shirts, some fresh underwear and socks, the toothbrush, extra pair of jeans - all going into a rolling backpack. Now to see if I can get away with jamming a MacBook Air and all the chargers and shit in there too. That will be a moderately small gear bag and a rolling backpack - not bad. No car, nothing else, that's it. Kind of freeing except for those chains of strobe shit dragging at me as I write this. Well let's leave that to ponder and get all of your two cents.

For absolutely certain I am making no story-boards, no plan, or anything close. I am going to wing it. Right now I have only two people I am going to shoot with and that's sorta kinda tentative as to exactly when. I kinda like this. Now that part is way different for me - no plan.



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