Don't get nervous, I've not abandoned photography or anything, just going in a little different direction gear-wise.  Let me explain.

The Evolution of the Photographer.  Fujifilm posted the above graphic on their Photokina 2014 page and it perfectly describes my own evolution as a photog.  The guy on the right, that's so me right now.  Free from the weight and burden of gear and excited to create again.

The Evolution of the Photographer.  Fujifilm posted the above graphic on their Photokina 2014 page and it perfectly describes my own evolution as a photog.  The guy on the right, that's so me right now.  Free from the weight and burden of gear and excited to create again.

No wonder I have back problems today.

First let me say just how much I loved my Canon 5D MkII setup.  It served me well for six years.  I knew this camera, its lenses, and flashes inside and out.  It takes amazing pictures and even more amazing video and is a system I still have and use at work.  But in the everyday, and in my personal work, I found myself using it less and less.  Ever since I started experiencing back issues and the resulting surgery, I just didn't want to carry around a large camera body, two large heavy lenses, flashes, and all the other accessory gear.  So I didn't.

The problem with this is my life as a photographer began to diminish.  I was no longer creating the body of work the creative in me needed.  So I decided to sell it all, body, lenses, grip, bags, and everything else I didn't want to carry on a daily basis and move to a new system.  But what?  

This is a scary proposition for a photographer.  Just do a quick search for Canon vs. Nikon and you'll get thousands of results and quickly find that people are VERY passionate about their choice of gear.  I never really fell into that debate because I always felt that a good photographer could produce amazing imagery with any system, the basics are all the same, it's just a matter of taste.  Myself, I used Nikon gear throughout my career in the Air National Guard.  It just happened that when I bought my first camera system, I really liked the feel of the Canon 10D so thats what I went with.  Now, some 15+ years of gear acquisition later, I found myself staring at a closet full of gear I no longer wanted to carry around and wondering what I could replace it with that still met all my needs? 

I looked at some smaller Canon bodies to replace the 5D MkII but that wasn't enough.  It would have been the cheapest and easiest solution but I would still have to lug around the same lenses.  Have you ever shot for a full day with a 70-200 2.8L?  It gets heavy fast, even if it just stays in the bag.  After deciding that wasn't going to work, I started looking at other options.  Eventually it was Zach Arias and David Hobby who turned me on to Fujifilm's newish line of x-series mirrorless cameras.  I lusted over the X100s and the X-Pro1 but it was the X-T1 that eventually sealed the deal for me.  I ordered the body and a couple lenses and was hooked right away.  This is a setup I don't mind carrying.  It fits in my everyday work bag easily, even when paired with a couple flashes and the images from it are outstanding.  

A quick size comparison between systems.  On the right, the Canon 5DMkII with 24-105 f4L IS and 70-200 f2.8L IS compared to my new Fujifilm X-T1 with 18-135 as well as the 35mm f1.4 on the left.

A quick size comparison between systems.  On the right, the Canon 5DMkII with 24-105 f4L IS and 70-200 f2.8L IS compared to my new Fujifilm X-T1 with 18-135 as well as the 35mm f1.4 on the left.

I don't want to get into the nuts and bolts of the X-T1 as this isn't intended to be a review.  There's enough of them out there.  It's more a post to explain where I'm at as a photographer and why I'm excited about the art again.

So what's next? Well, I don't really know.  I carry my camera with me every day now and am excited to create again.  Is it because of my shiny new toy or is it something else?  Again I don't know, but it doesn't hurt thats for sure.

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