This Must Be The Place

DSCF3775FUJIFILM X-Pro1 (67.1mm, f/9, 1/70 sec, ISO200)

There are some very special places in the world. This is one of them: Bryce Canyon. When you come here for the very first time you are overwhelmed. When you come again it is just the same.

This is one of the places where pictures not even come close to the real experience. Best case is if the photo gives an idea about what you can find there but the only real way is to go there and experience it yourself. To me this place is even better than the Grand Canyon.

DSCF3737FUJIFILM X-Pro1 (143.9mm, f/6, 1/340 sec, ISO200)
DSCF0706FUJIFILM X-T1 (18mm, f/10, 1/480 sec, ISO200)
DSCF0712FUJIFILM X-T1 (18mm, f/9, 1/160 sec, ISO200)

We were lucky to get one of the last rooms in a small hotel close to the Canyon. Usually we just fly to the USA and book for the first night. The other hotels and motels we just pre-book one day ahead or at the same day to stay flexible. This time we pre-booked not only the first hotel but also this one, the one in Page and the one in Bluff while we were still at home. It was close to get the room here and it was already too late to get a room at the Monument Valley. Because of the heat August is a kind of off-season here but there is no such thing at these locations.

There is still no need to worry. This is a big country and there is plenty of space.

DSCF3778FUJIFILM X-Pro1 (50mm, f/9, 1/140 sec, ISO200)
DSCF0749FUJIFILM X-T1 (55mm, f/9, 1/105 sec, ISO200)
DSCF3761FUJIFILM X-Pro1 (50mm, f/7.1, 1/900 sec, ISO200)

As mentioned before a place like this is tricky to photograph. How should it be possible to capture something so big on such a small sensor. And no: full frame would not help either. Field cameras offer some improvement but it is still a very small medium for such big landscapes

Usually I try to do some overviews but the focus is on details that I pick out with a rather long lens. I had the kit lens on the X-T1 and the cheap 50-230 on the X Pro-1. The nice thing about this setup is that there is no need to switch lenses and the fact that the X Pro-1 plus the 50-230 weighs next to nothing. Of course you can do the same with the Canon 7D plus 2.8/7-200 IS but it feels different. “You can’t compare that” I here some of you say. One is a super fast DSLR with a super fast, professional grade tele zoom lens while the other is a slow mirror less camera with a super slow and cheap zoom.

Truth is: In landscapes shots it doesn’t matter how fast the camera or the lens is. And at f9  you can’t tell if the image has been taken with an f2.8 zoom, a prime lens or an el cheapo lens like the Fuji XC 50-230 OIS. Your eyes can’t tell the difference but your shoulders can.

DSCF3753FUJIFILM X-Pro1 (101.2mm, f/7.1, 1/125 sec, ISO200)
DSCF3799FUJIFILM X-Pro1 (230mm, f/9, 1/800 sec, ISO200)

For somebody who is used to shoot with big lenses it still feels strange sometimes. How can such low profile gear produce quality shots? But it does and I think I will easily get used to not weighing myself down with gear when traveling.

These small cameras and lenses are an elegant solution to travel light without scarifying image quality.

DSCF0768FUJIFILM X-T1 (55mm, f/7.1, 1/640 sec, ISO200)