Lens-Artists Challenge – One Lens Walk

For many, many years I only had one way of taking photos. My trusted Nikon with my telephoto lens 18-105mm. When you have just one lens you get to know what it can do and what you need to do in order to get what you want. It still is my lens for walks and travelling. Old habits die hard and I’m not a person to swap lens in the middle of a walk. Too many times a shot was lost just because I was too slow to react, or the settings on the camera were not ideal. Swapping lenses? Not for me. I’ll adapt.

The following photos are from our walk last May at the RSPB Loch Lomond. An interesting part of the vast loch Lomond shores, this section is maintained by the RSPB (The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds). Unfortunately, we didn’t see any birds, perhaps we were a bit too noisy for that, but the walk is varied and mainly flat with loads of brilliant photo opportunities. For this landscape, only my telephoto lens would do.

It also worked to get more detailed shots of the local wildlife, lovely bluebells and butterflies. And the ancient, massive trees.

At some point it was clear that I needed a macro lens, especially for walks in gardens. All those flowers deserved a lens that could capture them in all their glory. Here’s a gallery of photos taken at one of our favourite gardens, Geilston. The lens is wonderful for those details, for everything else is a bit of a struggle. Experimentation is key, but I would never go to a garden without this lovely little lens.

Last Summer I had a bit of a camera problem while on holiday and was left with only my mobile phone. I’ve never relied on them, mobile phones would only do for quick shots. That changed with my current phone. Now, every Sunday that I’m working, I go into town early and walk the quiet streets and snap away. It’s been a refreshing discovery of nooks and crannies; secret bits of this city I thought I knew well.

Back in the house I look for more information on specific buildings that have caught my eye, like the Portland House (on the right), a grade B listed former cinema! I would never have guessed and passed by so many times. It’s amazing what we can find by having time and just looking up.

This week Anne invites us to take a lens for a walk. Or you can, like myself, search your archives for walks where you’ve only used one lens. I recommend a visit to Anne’s beautiful, insightful post and join us. Remember to link back to her original post and to tag Lens-Artists so we can easily find you.

Last week I was in awe with the creativity to the challenge I proposed. It was great to see so many different interpretations of the prompt, some of them I hadn’t even contemplated… and for that I thank you deeply.

Next week our newest member Donna is hosting for the first time. A big welcome to her! Please visit Donna’s impressive site and join us if you can. Until then, take care.

Posted for Anne’s Lens-Artists Challenge


37 thoughts on “Lens-Artists Challenge – One Lens Walk

  1. Sophia, you really dove into this challenge and it resulted in beautiful images! I like that you have a walking lens that gives you enough variety without changing lenses. That’s what I miss about my Nikon. I also don’t like changing lenses in the field which I have to do to get the same range. Great response.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Anne, for your words and also your challenge. I didn’t think much about lenses until I realised I wanted a macro one. Now it’s all about picking the right lens for where we’re going.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Terrific response Sofia – enjoyed your description of your lenses and how they’re best used. 18-105 is a really nice range for most everything and is perfect, as you’ve shown, for a variety of shots. The macro lens is perfect for flowers and you’ve included many beautiful image of them, both today and in many other L-A challenges. Finally, I’m with you 100% on the capabilities of the newer phones and their vastly-improved cameras. Great work this week!

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  3. I also used the 18-105 for a couple of years and loved it. Quite fast, has good sharpness, and is lightweight. Although I switched to full-frame in 2012, I kept it until last year when I switched to mirrorless.
    Similar to you, I also considered my smartphone camera more as a toy than a serious tool, despite I knew about the quality. I wasn’t satisfied with the fixed focal length being sooo wide. But, on a photo trip back in 2018, my camera got a problem and thus I also switched to my smartphone (better a smartphone than nothing).
    Btw. I even considered focusing on smartphone photography for this issue, but I didn’t.

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  4. An interesting perspective on your lens choices and how you match them to your chosen subject. My days of swapping lenses are behind me – these days I rely on my trusty Panasonic Lumix bridge to cover all my needs. But like you I still tend to think of my phone as a poor substitute despite all the advances in phone cameras. Maybe I just don’t use it enough to have adapted properly, as it seems you are starting to do 🙂

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    1. For me it’s because it’s convenient: I don’t fance carrying my camera to work but I still enjoy the walks 😀 It’s all about knowing the limitations, I think. I have taken photos with the phone that I liked so much I went back with the camera to get better quality!

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  5. Beautiful photography and interesting and well explained about your choices of lens. I agree, I never change lenses during my walks, I stick to one and adapt. Phones? Well, I tend to think of them as only substitutes and snapshots, but I find their ability in dark surroundings is far better than my camera’s. So, when it is dark, I often use the phone if I must take a photo.
    Love your idea of walking early mornings for snapshots!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Ann-Christine. I’m starting to think most of us have roughly the same approach to phones/cameras. It’s been interesting to see. The walks in the morning are great, loads of new photos and they’re keeping me fit 😀


  6. Love that you shared your reasons for using different lenses. My favorite photos are of Loch Lomond. The trails and the tree line on the shore line is beautiful and the telephoto is so necessary for the wildlife and birds isn’t it. Funny you didn’t see many birds. Always a nice answer to the challenge Sofia, and I loved yours last week.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Hahaha. I can relate. I often take my four grandkids on what they call “adventures”. We even scare hikers away if we are in the wilderness.

        I love that I have the time to take them, And if they want to happily sing along I am good. Lol. One time the 10 year old got ahead and saw a ringtail cat (kinda rate to see) verified by the ranger. Well, my grandson squawked at the other 3 for scaring it.

        Now I put him in charge of when we should be quiet.

        Liked by 1 person

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