A popular misconception is that an ultra wide angle lens is required for landscape photography, and while useful, it can often lead to hackneyed compositions and converging verticals. Used judiciously they are a useful tool, but not the only tool in the landscape photographers bag. I bought my Nikon 16-35 lens 4 years ago and by my reckoning this is the first time I’ve used it for landscape, although admittedly my concept of landscapes is different to most, and I’ve tended to use primes more often than not for the past 2 years or so.
In this situation, the 16-35 really came into its own, as there is little chance of converging verticals, little evidence of distortion (and Lightroom sorted that anyway), great depth of field, and wide field of view. And for a zoom lens, it’s really quite sharp, although not in the same league as my primes.
I also forgot how good the Nikon D700 is in these situations. Yes it’s supposedly an ‘old’ camera now (launched in 2008, and I bought mine in 2009) but its dynamic range still impresses me. Sure its been surpassed by the more recent full frame and even some crop sensors, but as an all rounder, Nikon have never really brought out a direct replacement for it.
I hauled my tripod along the rocky Aberglasyn Pass and up Cwm Bychan so that I could take multiple exposures and manually merge the exposures in Photoshop (definitely NOT HDR in photomatix). And although I did this, quite honestly, I didn’t really need to. OK, maybe for one where the sky was such a small part of the scene that it burnt out 50% of it. Which makes me wonder when I do eventually replace the camera at some point how good the dynamic range and high ISO capabilities will be. The D4s is already better by several factors, but I really don’t need its incredible capabilities or for that matter weight. Neither do I want to spend nearly £5000 on a camera. But if I get another 5 years out of the D700, how much further on will technology have progressed