Photography can be super lightweight. This is one of the appeals of mirrorless cameras such as produced by Sony or Fujifilm. But such beautifully lightweight cameras are not worth a dime if one carries around tons of equipment. Gear acquisition syndrome (GAS) contributes to this problem. After all, you did not buy the right gear for the right moment to have it lying around at home.
But it it can also work another way. I like to travel light. Most of the time, only with my X100T for street photography or with my X-Pro1 or X-T1 and the holy trinity + one: XF 10-24, XF 18-55, XF 55-200 + XF 35 f2 (for the occasional street photography). In addition, ND filters and a tripod. That is it.
Recently, I did some experimental lightweight landscape photo shooting. I took my X-T1, the surprisingly sharp, versatile, and extremely robust kit lens XF 18-55, a light Aluminium tripod by Manfrotto. Furthermore, for on the run editing: the iPhone 7 plus & Apple’s SD dongle. As for apps: Lightroom Mobile and Snapseed.
Since it was raining heavily, i took pictures with the interval mode with intervals of 2 minutes when the clouds were moving fast and 15 minutes when they moved slowly. The comparing the photographs, it is easy to pic the best one. The IQ is bound to be lower as the rain introduces noise and blur.
Once the pictures are taken, I use Apple’s SD dongle to transfer the RAW files. The X-T1 does have WIFI, but with RAW it is too long a wait. I import the picture into Lightroom Mobile where I start with cropping and move on to general adjustments to Light and Colour.
When the picture looks right, I move on to radial and detailed adjustments. I added some sunlight, increased the contrast and clarity in the mountains, and added an adjustment layer to light up and the field to its original colour.
The adjustment layers overlay the general settings. Therefore, in order to apply final general adjustments (and also to treat series with general overall settings to give them all the same look) I export the file in maximum quality to Snapseed.
Snapseed also complements Lightroom Mobile quite well with powerful healing, transform, and selective tools. The selective adjustment tool is specifically usefull: it combines radial filter with colour selection to allow a quite precise manipulation. Furthermore, a variety of fully adjustable filters and presets gives further creative control.
The final result is then imported again to the camera roll. I always use “save a copy”. This stores a copy of the file in the camera roll that can later on still be manipulated in Snapseed when imported back into the app.
All in all, the final photograph was produced with minimal equipment. If the weather was different, the IQ could have been better, but I am still very content with the result. After all, only mobile phone photography is more lightweight.