Working Tools 22. – New Camera

There is a new camera in the bag. Actually, it’s not in the bag, it’s in the pocket. That’s the point.

“The best camera is the one with you” or versions thereof, is often attributed to photographer Chase Jarvis, and he may have been the first to say it, I don’t know. I can’t doubt the veracity of it.

Existing Kit

I have a good iPhone, and it takes excellent snaps. I have no doubt that with sufficient effort, I could learn to harness its power. But, it’s not a camera. It’s a computer. My whole office lives in there. Social media and the internet too. Sure, I’m likely to have it with me at all times, but I’d like to leave it in my pocket.

I have been taking more photographs with my DSLR, a Nikon D3300, and working through the basics of the craft. Learning. It’s a great camera with more capability than the person carrying it. Pocketable; it isn’t. I can wear it around my neck, or carry a bag. Those are my choices.


I really don’t like carrying a bag if I don’t have to. Nor, am I a fan of having an ostentatious DSLR around my neck. So began my quest for a camera that is portable, powerful, and not a phone. After lots of research, and advice from some smart people, I plumped for a Ricoh GR III.

New Camera


There is a steep learning curve, upon which I have just embarked. I know, beyond any doubt, how to take unfocused photographs. Fortunately, I am getting the knack of taking focused ones too.

I intend to make “Rick” my constant companion, so that it becomes “the one with me”. I’ll learn by doing, and when I can’t work something out, I’ll dig out the manual and search for the answer. For reasons unknown, Amazon sent me a French-market camera, and though my French is OK, I might struggle with some of the more technical words, so I downloaded an English version. Just in case.

First Thoughts

Observations on the new camera thus far:
1. No view finder. Takes some getting used to – I’m considering the accessory, but will persevere. It may just need some time.
2. Light. There’s no inbuilt flash, so taking photos in low light takes a little more thought and creativity.
3. Wow. It’s clever.

Photography ticks multiple boxes for me. It gets the gears turning in my head, captures memories, and provides shots for the notebook business, and this blog.

I’m not very good at it, but I’ll get better.

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Some time off!

Stuart Lennon. Abbots Ann, Hampshire. April 21st 2015. Copyright Warren James Palmer. 044 1264 848 056
Stuart Lennon. Abbotts Ann, Hampshire. April 21st 2015. Copyright Warren James Palmer. 044 1264 848 056

The above is me. Dashing, I know.

As a good friend once said of me;

“A fine figure of two men.”

I have left the picture credit on for Warren James – who is a fantastic photographer and charming man to boot. Warren is sensible enough to have chosen to live and work in Brittany – but still comes back to the UK to muck about with flying machines and make subjects look far better than they have any right to look.

Over the last few weeks, I have done no novel writing and no blogging.

I have been catching up on all sorts of other things that needed catching up on and as the title of this post suggests, I have taken a little time off being a writer.

Some time off is, I think, essential. I am feeling recharged, re-energised and focused. Even the garden is looking a bit better.

Somehow or other I am being lured back into the corporate world, and although suspicious, in many ways, I am pleased.

Work has always been important to me and how I define myself.

More inspiring than this though is that work gets me sparking.

Whatever it is that is responsible for the desire to create something, to imagine a storyline or write a chapter is ignited in me by human contact, by negotiation, by solving problems.

I am discovering that balance is vital to me. Some time working, some time writing and some time off. Each element feeds the others.

How do you keep balanced?

D is for Death….


The fourth day of the AtoZ Blogging Challenge.

Thank you for reading and commenting. There are masses of blogs to check out. Here is a list.

Death. Christians are now celebrating Easter, with Friday being all about death.

An important and profound subject.

Way too important and profound for me to tackle.

I am writing about “Death to the Stock Photo“. Not really about death at all. This is a fantastic service provided by Allie Lehman and David Sherry for people like you and me.

As my last post illustrates, I am a dreadful photographer.

My shots require captions as explanations.

Each month Allie and David send me a pack of beautifully crafted tableaux, absolutely free, which I am able to use here on the blog. There is one at the top of this post.

There are, of course, great pictures all over the internet. Here is the thing, these photographs belong to people. They are creations.

I aspire to write books, books that people might pay for. I daresay I am unlikely to demand masses of cash for my debut novel, but I know that I would be upset were I to find my work free all over the internet.

Photographers, writers and other artists create. They invest heavily of themselves and toil to make their art as good as it can be. Most ask for very little in return. Some ask for recognition, some ask to make a living. (The very cheek of it!)

Get yourself over to “Death to the Stock Photo‘ and sign up. There is a free service and there is also a subscription model (more artists looking to make a living, tsk, tsk) with completely unfettered access to a growing library of great shots.

Quite apart from the fact that they take beautiful pictures, these guys seem really cool too.