What can I say, I’m in love with New Zealand! It makes me think of the classic Norman Rockwell painting of a sailer, who’s got a bunch of girls names tattooed on his arm, only to cross each one out once he falls in love with a new girl. So move over Gimli, Ireland, Montreal in the Spring, Guadalupe, and Chile, to name a few, New Zealand has stolen my heart.
Who could’t love a country with a temperate climate, the feeling of being at the end of the earth (probably because only one other spot on the globe is closer to Antarctica), forests that have an air of mystery, suspense, & deeply hidden treasure. Plus of course the people, who were hospitable, talkative, friendly and giving, and had the sense of humour way back when to choose a bird as their national symbol (the Kiwi) that is short & ugly, can’t fly, is the size of a chicken, prefers to be alone and in the dark and lays the largest egg in proportion to its body size in the world. Gotta love that.
I wish my 3 days was 3 weeks, but my short and inspired visit will only lead me back there again to explore what I missed. The country was like having your favorite comedian as your tour guide. I’ve already added it to my list of places with grandiose landscapes that I want to shoot for fine art, along with going back to the Mojave desert in California. I travel to get inspired, so I can travel some more and get further inspired, and all the while looking to fill my lens with more imagery.
I brought along my new little micro-4/3rds Lumix pocket camera to test out. I like what it can do for a sub-500$ camera; plenty of manual over-ride features to please the pro-shooter in me, a wide 28-105 zoom lens, a manual macro focus feature, the best video encoding in its class, and 16mp’s to fill my frames with info and textures. The cons are that it’s dynamic range is a bit too small for my liking (well it’s sensor is the size of a postage stamp so what could I have expected, right), the fixed zoom lens is very sensitive to sand and dust which can affect it’s function, and when widest, it’s got a lot of aberrations in the corners. You can see it in the images below.
This camera class, however, is absolutely the way to go for amateurs and pro’s alike because of their compactness and resolving power of their sensors. You have to balance what you need, which for me, taking my large pro gear everywhere wasn’t the holiday I was looking for this time. So with the Lumix, I got to take it easy and have a pocket camera that still treated me like a pro.