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Archive 2013 · Photog Roadtrip - Advice, Comments, Recommendations
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · Photog Roadtrip - Advice, Comments, Recommendations

Zachary Gragg

Dear Fred Miranda members,

Iím a new regular to this site. I feel so privileged to have access to the wonderful photography resource that FM is. Iíve benefited from the FredMiranda website in many ways: the Buy/Sell forum, Product Reviews, News, as well as forum posts and responses. Iím now making my first forum thread, which I hope will be benefit me as well as many others.
Now, to the purpose of this forum thread: a series of solo road trips throughout the Southeast that I intend to thoroughly photograph. I want your advice, recommendations, and ideas for photographing the sites along the way. Iím particularly looking for help on developing my kit, where to do photography in those areas and other travel photography advice. Questions will be put in asterisks (*). Requests for equipment purchases will be put in double asterisks (**). Notes will be tabbed out from the text with three underscores (___).

Iím a College student, but am taking the summer off for family matters: my brotherís Atlanta wedding and visiting friends/family in the metro ATL area, caring for my aging great-great Aunt in central South Carolina, staying with my aged grandmother in Northeast Tennessee, and visiting my sisterís family yet blessed with another little one in Myrtle Beach, SC. I expect to take four trips, one to each destination. Each trip is expected to last 2-3 weeks. I will likely depart from Northeast Florida to the respective duration throughout the summer months, tending to photography business and personal affairs during the interim.

Needed items will be identified. Feel free to comment/question on my currently owned gear.

BODY: Canon 5D (with two C batteries and the C charger)
Lenses: edMika converted Canon FL 55mm f/1.2 and Letiax converted Contax/Zeiss 28-85mm.
___Lenses note: I intend to use the prime lens for portraits, low light and the occasional landscape. I intend to use the CZ zoom for most of my landscapes as well as use it for my walk-around zoom lens.

FILTERS/HOODS: Marumi UV filter for FL prime and BW UV filter for CZ zoom; generic metal hoods.
___Filters Note: I want a CPL or ND filter for landscape shots with my Zeiss zoom. It uses 82mm threads. I intend to photograph: mountains, landscapes, water sources (including ocean), and cityscapes. Ideally, Iíd like a one-filter-fits-all for those purposes.
*What is the best sort of CPL/ND filter to get?*
**If you have one filter that would fit the bill, please private message me the model, condition, and price. Or, direct me to Amazon/B&H. My budget is $150 for the 82mm filter.**

MONOPOD: needed.
___Note: I would like a light yet sturdy monopod. I would prefer a monopod that could double as a walking stick, as I expect to be hiking a few miles deep into the Appalachian Mountains.
*What monopod should I get?*
*What head should I get*
___Note: I expect to be using a Really Right Stuff L plate or like product.
**If you have a monopod that would work, please private message me the model, condition, and price. Or, direct me to Amazon/B&H. My budget is $175 for the monopod-and-head.**

MEMORY CARD: 1 Komputer Bay 128GB 1000x CF card
___Note: Iíve seen some pro photogs advocate using multiple cards. Here, it seems logical to just keep one in the body at all times. *Thoughts, comments, and other ideas?*

OTHER EQUIPMENT: please recomend.
EQUIPMENT ADVICE: please mention.

I will now outline my travel plans by trips. Please, recommend places to photograph and places to eat. Iím nearly as much a foodie as I am a photographer. =)

Trip 1: Northeast Florida -> Atlanta, Georgia (briefly) -> Western area of South Carolina -> Northeast Florida
___Note: For trip 1, I will be in ATL only for the wedding, then in the Western area of South Carolina to care for my great-great Aunt. After that, I plan to go towards the beach and take US-17 down the coast towards my home.

*Places to see and photograph along the Carolina-Florida coast?*
Trip 2: Northeast Florida -> Northeast Tennessee -> Northeast Florida
___Note: For trip 2, I will be in the Appalachian area of Tennessee.
*Places to see and photograph along the way of Northeast Florida and Northeast Tennessee?*

Trip 3: Northeast Florida -> Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.
___Note: For trip 3, I intend to travel along US-17. I plan to be in Myrtle Beach and within a 100 mile radius.
*Places to see and photograph along the Carolina-Florida coast and in the Myrtle Beach area?*

Trip 4: Northeast Florida -> metro Atlanta area
___Note: For trip 4, I intend to be mostly along the northern side of metro Atlanta, as well as downtown. I expect to take I-75 on my way up, so I can see stuff along the way and in the southern area of metro Atlanta.
*Places to see and photograph along trip up? Should I take I-16 west from Savannah instead of I-75 North from central Florida?*

~~Personal Safety and Protection~~
For my travels, I plan to go solo. Naturally, Iím concerned about my safety and want to arm myself appropriately. I do not want to carry a concealed weapon. Although, if deemed necessary, I will lawfully do so. Iím mostly interested in protecting myself with something small or light - Iím thinking pepper spray.
___Note: Iíve never shot a gun. Iím a slim yet athletic 6-foot man with good vision and dexterity.
*Thoughts, ideas, advice on safety protection and weaponry?*

Other than my suitcases, I plan to bring 1 LowePro CompuDayPack to store my macbook, camera, lenses and other goodies. I also plan on bringing a small camera bag for my walk-around set-up, i.e. 5Dc + Zeiss 28-85mm lens.
*What walk-around bag would you recommend for protection from the elements and sturdiness?*
*What other bags, containers might I benefit from*
___Note: I want a bag that will protect my gear from the weather, especially humidity and rain.
**If you have a bag that would work, please private message me the model, condition, and price. Or, direct me to Amazon/B&H. My budget is $100 for the bag.**

~~Other Advice~~
*Could you give me photography advice about this proposed adventure?* Any-and all would be appreciated.
___Note: Iím a College student doing freelance photography and working as the Photo Editor of my school newspaper. Iíve been doing photography work on a paid level for 1 year, and have had a DSLR for 3 years. I have some experience with landscapes, mostly night and city shots - although much of my paid work revolves around photojournalism, parties, and portraits. If youíd like to give your own advice for photography or direct me to websites, that would be much appreciated!

Other comments, questions, or posts of any kind are happily welcomed!

Sincere thanks,
And best regards,

Apr 15, 2013 at 05:03 PM
jim allison
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · Photog Roadtrip - Advice, Comments, Recommendations

A weapon is not necessary. I have photographed all over Florida for the past 10 years, with a lot of higher end gear and have never felt the need for a weapon except in swampy areas, where the only danger is from snakes and gators. Bug spray will be much more useful to you.It all depends on what you want to photograph!I would suggest the following areas, some of which are in the middle panhandle a little to the west.
1) Appalachicola
2) Big Bend
3) Saint Augistine
4) Cedar Key
5) Savanah Georgia and Tibby Island
6) Canavaral National Sea Shore
7) Merritt Island Bird Sanctuary-good for landscapes as well as birds.
8) Daytona Beach
Hope these suggestions will be helpful to you. Enjoy your trip!

Apr 16, 2013 at 12:35 AM
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · Photog Roadtrip - Advice, Comments, Recommendations

Dear Jim Allison,

Thanks for the advice. I've now made not to bring bug spray as my weapon. I've also noted that list of places to photograph.

Sincere thanks,

Apr 16, 2013 at 05:32 AM
jim allison
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · Photog Roadtrip - Advice, Comments, Recommendations

You are very welcome and enjoy yourself!

Apr 16, 2013 at 06:41 PM

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