Rainy Brussels

I was part of a team of enthusiasts photographers in a photo-walk in Brussels, during November’s whimsy weather. Starting from the afternoon until the evening, night included, we roamed the streets of this city, looking for architecture and street photography subjects, enjoying each other’s company, exchanging tips and experiences.

We started from Poelaert Place, next to the monument dedicated to the Belgian infantry. The view over a part of the city is truly panoramic.

And we hoped for overcast skies, but without rain. From there, we started our long walk.

My partners in crime, the photo-walk mates, were my colleagues from the VIEWFINDERS – The Photography Club of Brussels.

It is a pleasant and interesting experience to discover parts of a vast and beautiful city, places that you never been before, or just passed through, in a hurry, without having the peace to stop and enjoy the architecture, discover the inner rhythm of every street. This is what we did there: impose the serenity to enjoy the urban discoveries.

As we hoped for some good weather, the plan was to explore and try different techniques in photography, so we were very well prepared.

I took my larger photo bag, to accommodate the tools I might need to try all those photo techniques. So, I had my camera with both zoom and prime lenses, manual focus lenses, flashgun, spare batteries, flash light modifier, even a compact tripod, cable remote shutter release. And I was overburdened (some of my colleagues were even more overwhelmed, with their heavy DSLRs kits and photo gear), even if I use Fujifilm mirrorless cameras and lenses.

But that day, especially when the rain begun to pour, I immediately started to regret that I was going astray from my “travel light” philosophy. This is one of the reasons why I made the switch from DSLR to Mirrorless.

Since the rain started, we didn’t need any flashes, or light modifiers, on portrait lenses. One camera, one lens (weather sealed!) was the only gear I needed.

Our last destination was Grande Place, coming through Central Station. It was quite a long walk; we wanted to try and do many things and we wished we could explore more, but we simply postponed them for another photo-walk, because of the heavy rain, strong and frosty wind.

It is true that each experience comes with its valuable lessons that we need to learn. And I have learned that I needed better clothes and a smaller photo bag with significantly less gear. Because carrying less, means more comfort and freedom.

And traveling with only one camera – one lens setup could be truly invigorating for your photography creativity. Sometimes you could do more with less, because you will focus more on quality and you need to do your best to overcome the technical limitations. You want to come home disappointed and complaining “why did I leave those lenses back home?”, or you want to feel the excitement of having great photographs, made with only one lens? So, it would be great to start experimenting with this philosophy right now. May the Light be with you!

All photos and text – © Sebastian Boatca 2017 / www.sebastianboatca.com

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2 Comments

  1. At least the rain and darkness made for those interesting light-reflected-in-the-street shots, which are always attractive.

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