The Orkney wave image and the importance of my Nikon camera kit

Photography kit

I often say it's not all about the kit, but it is also very true that without the right camera and lens in your hands, you can’t shoot the image you want to. I have many bodies and lenses but my Nikon D800 is my go to landscape photography body at the moment. The quality and file size suits my landscape work well. And, although I have some incredible lenses to choose from, such as my trusty 24-70mm and beautiful 70-200mm, sometimes I choose practicality over the premium lens.
This is a great example! It was a wild day - and when I say wild I mean it was difficult to stand up straight, let alone move forwards. When shooting I had to lie flat on the ground as standing up and holding the camera was impossible. Sea spray coming off the rocks in front of meant I had to shoot fast, turn away, wipe it all off the lens and shoot again. The waves were hitting 22ft and the wind about 60 mph.....
So I knew from the previous shoot just 15 mins ago in another location that changing lenses was not even on the radar. A tripod would last approx 5 seconds and having the right kit and the right settings ready to go was the difference between shooting a great image and shooting nothing at all.
As often is the case, I like to get a few wider shots of the scene but I also tend to use longer lenses for most of my imagery. So this is where a very decent lens that I bought for travelling years ago is really proving its worth. Nikon 28-300 f 3.5-5.6. A great sharp lens with the capability of a decent wide angle and also with good range for pulling in. I’m not so worried about a lower f stop in landscape photography so the f 3.5 doesn’t bother me so much.
I was correct in my assessment of the situation and had brought the right kit. With just one camera and one lens in hand I was able to shoot some lovely images in the very short space of time I could stay out in these conditions.  What I love most about this image is the way the sun came out for a fleeting minute or two and lit up only a tiny part of the sea. Even in this type of extreme weather, when the skies are threatening  and dark and the sea is tumultuous, the crystal clear turquoise of the Scottish water can be seen.


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