A camera that I want to pick up

Hi! My name is Peter, and I’m an amateur photographer born and raised in Värnamo, Sweden. Living a happy family life with my partner and our two children, I work as a team leader at a company that develops protection and communication solutions.

As for my photography, I’m self-taught, and I mostly shoot outdoors, everything from nature to urban landscapes, and appreciate indoor photography such as product and still life. I get my inspiration from looking at other photographers’ work and just being out looking around and absorbing my surroundings.

I do not consider myself to have any special style or locked into any particular genre but am usually drawn to the minimal when creating my images, prefer images that contain few elements, and most often, I pick my scenes with slightly longer focal lengths. I don’t know why, but I have been taking fewer and fewer landscape pictures of sunrises and sunsets in recent years.

While these pictures are satisfying to shoot and usually have a big wow factor, they don’t tend to hold my interest for long. I always strive to have the image as finished as possible in the camera, so the post-processing work gets as little as possible. I shoot RAW, and when it comes to image processing, I use Photoshop. Usually, I do all the basic development in Camera Raw, then I do the final touches and complete the post-processing in Photoshop.

I have more or less always been interested in art in different forms. As a child, I liked to draw and paint, something I continued to do through adolescence and into adulthood, but other and new interests took over, which meant no time to draw and paint to the same extent as before. Today, pencils and brushes are only brought out when children want to draw and paint.

So how did I get started in photography? By a pure coincidence. One day I was offered a new role at another department at the company where I work, an opportunity for me to develop within the company. I accepted the new role, and at the new department, there was a guy named Andreas that I got to know.

In his spare time, he was doing photography, and the more we talked and discussed photography, the more my curiosity and interest grew over time. So in 2004, I bought my first camera, a Nikon D70 with the the18-70mm AF-S kit lens. I got hooked right away. With that camera, I could create anytime, anywhere, capture a moment in time, and instantly see the results.

As someone interested in technology, over time, I became more and more interested in the technology inside the cameras and lenses, which lead me into pixel peeping, changing gear, jump between different brands several times over the years. I was always chasing the “best” cameras and lenses.

Still, at the same time, I slowly began to realize that the large, heavy cameras and lenses held back my creation. I did not enjoy using my gear to the same extent anymore. The camera was left home more and more often, and in the end, it was basically only used for planned photo sessions.

I started to sell off and downsize my equipment. At that same time, Olympus released the OM-D E-M5, which caught my interest and led me to buy one as a complement to my full-frame equipment. It did not take long before the OM-D E-M5 became my main camera.

Well built, a snappy and fun camera to use, but most importantly, it was small and light which meant that it basically followed me everywhere, and over time that led to better pictures and more keepers. I could now combine my two biggest passions, photography and mountain biking, without having to worry about having a too large and heavily packed backpack with me on the long rides.

This led me to switch completely to the M43 system, mainly Olympus. And today my equipment consists of three cameras and some lenses.

Cameras:
• Olympus OM-D E-M5 (rarely used today, sits mostly on the shelf)
• Olympus OMD E-M1 Mark II
• Olympus PEN-F
Lenses:
• M.Zuiko 12mm f2.0
• M.Zuiko 17mm f1.8
• Panasonic Leica DG Summilux 25mm f1.4 ASPH
• M.Zuiko 45mm f1.8
• Panasonic Lumix G Nocticron 42.5mm f1.2 ASPH
• M.Zuiko 75mm f1.8
• Panasonic Leica DG Vario-Elmarit 8-18mm f2.8-4.0 ASPH
• M.Zuiko 12-100mm f4.0 IS PRO

Of all the cameras I have owned over the years, the Olympus PEN-F is by far my favourite camera, and I am dreaming of a PEN-F MarkII with a bigger viewfinder, phase-detect autofocus, weather sealing, and the latest features like handheld High-Res and Live ND.

My favourite and most used lens, hands down M.Zuiko 12-100 f4.0 IS PRO. Sure, it is a bit big and heavy, but it is such a good and versatile lens. It’s perfect for my needs and for what I mostly photograph. Sync IS has more or less made my tripod redundant.

If I made any changes to my current equipment, I would trade the Panasonic 25mm f1.4 for an M.Zuiko 25mm f1.2 PRO, and the Panasonic 45mm f1.2 for a telephoto lens. Idealistic for me, it would be if Olympus came out with a telezoom that matched my 12-100mm, something like a 50-200 f4 PRO zoom with Sync IS.

Disadvantages of the M43 system and the smaller sensor? It’s a bit behind in AF-performance and image quality compared with the larger sensor cameras, but for my personal needs and the pictures I take, the image quality I get from my M43 gear is more than enough. The most important thing for me is that I have a camera that I want to pick up, which I really enjoy, and that is fun to use.

Thanks for reading // Best regards, Peter

"Hi! My name is Peter, and I'm an amateur photographer born and raised in Värnamo, Sweden. Living a happy family life with my partner and our two children, I work as a team leader at a company that develops protection and communication solutions."

7 Comments

  1. My EM10 MK3 just feels right. I’ve owned Sony A7 Canon T3i Fuji xt2 but I always come back to the Olympus. It just feels right.

    1. Hi Scott,

      What’s your opinion about Fuji xt2? Compared to EM5? Yes have the EM5 mark3 and enjoy it but often feel jealous of Fuji cameras, mostly xt2 and xt3

  2. Great article!

    That is exactly right – and the best camera is the one you have with you. I, too, was leaving my Nikon Gear at home but, as of last week, it is all gone. I am now entirely an Olympus guy.

  3. Great article , I started with Olympus (E420) and switched to Nikon (D7000) . After a while the camera stayed home to often because of the weight . I then bought the E-M1 with the 12-40 pro lens and never looked back . Recently I bought a second hand PEN-F (only about 400 shots were on it) that is like brandnew . I adore this camera !!!!!The latest lens I bought is also the 12-100 pro (Do not know if I will sell the 12-40 pro or not ) I would really like the OM-D E-M 1mk II . But who knows , like you said a PEN-F Mk II weathersealed would be great , but I think VERY expensive . Your photos are wonderfull !!

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