Or so my wife tells me! But as a life-long, dyed in the wool, long standing, uncompromising photographer it pretty much is all about the photography. Everything I do, everywhere I go, I’m looking at the quality of light, composition, visualising – a myriad of thought processes going on. It all happens automatically like walking and talking, sometimes even at the same time!
So where’s this going? As I’ve often mentioned in my blogs I have a problem when it comes to travel, photography and equipment. This problem has gotten worse over the last few years as I started to shoot film again for my fine art images. Now, I have more cameras than I can wave a stick at, much to my wife’s delight!
Around the start of September (2016) we had booked to take our RV / Motorhome / Camper / Camping Car, (we’ll call it a RV for handiness sake) to France for a couple of weeks. I had the usual conflicts and turmoil about what equipment to take. For someone who is normally decisive I can procrastinate over this for hours or days! This time was going to be different. I took a conscious decision that I didn’t want to see France through a viewfinder, well not all of it anyway. It was time to be decisive.
So 3 film cameras, 3 lens and a digital camera later I had failed spectacularly. Interestingly and it came as a bit of a shock to me – the digital camera was barely used. The majority of holiday pictures were taken on my iPhone. I wasn’t expecting that!
Will I be brave enough to go on my next trip with just film cameras and a smart phone? I guess we’ll have to wait and see. Who am I kidding? Probably not.
Oh France, what a joy. We drove about 1500 miles in the RV without any real issue, I will admit I was a little nervous about the driving. Last time I drove on the continent was in Italy and that was an interesting experience. The Italians have a well-deserved international reputation for their driving, wonderful people, fantastic landscape, chaotic driving! We’ll leave it at that 🙂 France on the other hand couldn’t have been more different, they’ve a great road system, both on and off motorways.
Despite the temptation I wanted to spend as little time on the motorways as possible, the purpose of the trip was to see France and not endless miles of monotonous motorways. The little French towns and villages are what appealed. As I discovered there was one problem with that theory; the French appear to have a love affair with roundabouts. You can easily come across five or six roundabouts within a one mile stretch, painful. I lost count of how many times that happened.
When we arrived in France after a nineteen hour ferry crossing on the Oscar Wilde from Rosslare, Ireland we had one night stop planned. The rest we made up as we went along, a night here and a night there. A few nights were spent in vineyards and châteaus tasting the local wears, well I think it’s the law, isn’t it? Some nights spent on the edge of sleepy villages. Others were beside slow moving rivers watching the kingfishers race up the river or the red squirrels looking for nuts or whatever it is they look for. Big blue dragonflies the size of pigeons, ok I’m getting carried away, but they were huge. Sitting in 32° drinking the odd glass of local red, it wasn’t easy but we lived to tell the tale.
What was my favourite place? That’s a tough one but Mont Saint-Michel in Normandy has to be as spectacular as anything we experienced on this trip. It dominates the landscape for miles around but up close it has a beautiful elegance. Ok it’s a bit of a tourist trap, still I had to go and see it on two separate days. There’s something captivating about it and to quote of the famous philosopher Arnold Schwarzenegger ‘I’ll be back’
And probably next year (2017) without a digital camera! Ok I’m really am full of it.
Link to my fine art photography and more pictures to view
More images below from trip (all shot on iPhone 6s plus) and also a link to my Fine Art Images www.thinkmonochrome.com