I’m watching my weight and I’ve lost my grip!

Hi folks,

No, I’ve not enrolled in a weigh watchers class although I most probably could afford to shed a few inches from my waistline,ย  nor have I lost my tenuous grip on reality in this bizarre and frequently surreal world in which we live.

I’ve been giving even more thought to the gear that I carry and I decided to assess things in terms ofย  “is this bit of kit photographically mission-critical or not?”. I’ve applied this brutal logic to each and every item in my camera bag, large and small alike.ย  Is my camera rain cover essential or not?, how many times have I used it when I have weather-sealed camera body and main lens?, does it justify space and particularly weight in my bag?. So I’ve removed my add-on camera grip, it doesn’t improveย  my photographs and it saves a bit of weight, both in my bag and around my neck and I can just as easily operate the camera without it.

What was the last time that I used those filters?, do I really need to carry three spare batteries for a day out shooting?. How often do I have the need to use that lens?. My memory card case is waterproof and could probably survive being run over by a tank and/or dropped into the river, what are the chances of that happening? and does it need to be when it lives inside a waterproof, padded camera bag 99.99% of the time?, etc..

It pleasantly surprised me just how much weight saving there is to be had by applying this simple logic to one’s gear. And, perhaps the biggest question of all, how many times have I returned after a shoot thinking, “I’m so pleased that I took this or that bit of kit with me”? as opposed to “well, it can stay in my bag as it’ll come in handy one day” by which time I’ve carried it around on foot over a period ofย  time for hundreds of miles like a camera accessory manufactures’ pack mule.

There’s an old English saying “Look after the pennies and the pounds’ll look after themselves”. I have my own version of this “Look after the ounces and the pounds (weight) will look after themselves”. ๐Ÿ™‚


Best wishes,



“Back to the Weir”

Hi everyone,
I went back to the River Thames at East Molesey this morning. A new work of the Weir and a pretty successful try-out for my new camera bag.



Best wishes and, as always, thanks for your support and encouragement.


My camera gear and new camera bag, travelling ultra light – approx. 1.5 Kg (3 lbs) total weight!.

Hi everyone,

I’ve manged to get the total weight of my camera gear down to about 1 Kg. Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mk II + Fotodiox grip, battery and memory card fitted (550 g)ย  M.Zuiko 9-18 mm (approx 155 g), M.Zuiko 25 mm 1.8 (approx 136g) and Panasonic Lumix 12-60 mm (approx 210 g) and including my new thinkTANK Turnstyle 10 v2 sling bag (400 g) and few essential, such as spare batteries, memory cards, lens wipes and my thinkTANK Emergency camera rain cover, approx 1.5 Kg!.

I own or have seen faster and debatably sharper lenses but I’ve not seen sharper, faster and lighter lenses and certainly not a price point that I can afford or justify. The 12-60 mm is also weather-sealed to compliment my camera’s weather sealing. I chose the Fotodiox grip in preference to Olympus’ย  own grip as it doesn’t need to be detached and re-attached every time to change the camera’s battery.

My kit, chosen for it’s weight, size and focal length coverage to suit my photographic interests, which as I guess most of you already know are travel/landscapes.

summer 2020 gear new small
The bag seems like it’ll be perfect for my day-to-day requirements. Heaven knows I’ve tried all types of bag, shoulder bags, backpacks etc. and they all hurt. Could this be the one?!. The strap is nicely shaped and well padded.


Main compartment, easy access to my gear. I’ve added a HeroClip to the top loop to easily hang it up or suspend it from a tripod hook. I really like the idea of swinging the bag round and my gear is right there where I want it.


Rear compartment will hold an 8 inch tablet but is ideal for stashing myย thinkTANK emergency camera rain cover which could also hang from the HeroClip to dry out when required.


Main compartment for my camera and my choice of lenses. There’s also a horizontal stacking divider provided but I’m not currently using it.


Another inside compartment, maybe for some paperwork, travel documents or suchlike.


Front compartment comprising of three pockets for myย  filters, lens wipes, memory cards etc. and a larger front section in which you can just see my NEEWER battery case which is holds four Olympus BLN-1 batteries perfectly and securely.


End compartment housing the bag’s rain cover, shown with the waist strap ends tucked in. I think that the addition of the waist strap to the V2 is a very useful feature to stop the bag swinging around on the move.


Ultimately I don’t know how this bag will work out but I hope that my shoulders, back and neck will thank me for it. :).

Kind regards


PS. A while back I started using Cordweaver camera straps.ย like the red one shown in this post.