05 June 2008

Eating my own words

I've bought a lens.

Admitting this publically is a bit embarrasing since I've now joined the ranks of a certain type of nature photographer that I've been bashing twice before in this blog ("Furs & Feathers Galore" and "Pentax and TelePhoto"). The lens in question is a Pentax FA* 600mm f/4. The very largest of the old "dinosaurs", as I called them half a year ago.

Maybe my previous blog posts were just attempts to convince myself that such a lens wasn't worth buying. And maybe I was right. Time will tell. Right now, the feeling of "enablement" prevails. As if the purchase is a key to getting shots I've missed before.

The lens itself is huge. It weighs almost as much as the rest of my photo gear combined, and is certainly not anyone's choice for a casual walk-around lens. My trusty old FA* 400mm f/5.6 fits that bill much better, and has been with me for many a trip. The 600mm is the sort of tool to bring for a well-staged, well-planned event. For hunting rather than gathering. For situations where you're fairly sure the motif will come to you rather than the other way around.

That may imply staying inside hides for prolonged times. I still loathe that thought. I will have to consider my way of using this lens very carefully. It tickles my curiosity, but may not be the right kind of tool for my work.

And there's only one way to find out. I'll have to pray that my back does not come undone in the process... :-)


Anonymous said...

Thanks for your thoughts, looking forward to your work. I've been thinking about 400/5.6 myself, hope this isn't the trail leading to a 600 mm :-o

Alunfoto said...

It'll be a slow and winding trail, if it is at all, Sune. :-)

I bought my 400/5.6 eight years ago, and it served me very well, up to and including the shot of the black throated divers (loons) in the post about the Ally canoe earlier this month.