In April this year I was presented with the opportunity to participate in a photography workshop to Patagonia with my old man, a trip I will be eternally grateful for.

The basis of the trip equipment wise was digital and being a hiking trip the aim was to pack light. So with a Sony A7R and two lenses it was a difficult decision as to what equipment I could bring film wise.

It felt wrong going to a country hailed to have the most photogenic mountain ranges and not bringing my Nikon F2 along, but sometimes having limitations is not so bad.

Mount Fitzroy, last minutes of light falling below the imposing peaks (Kodak Portra 400) ~ By Nick Kennedy
Remnants of the Pierdras Blancas Glacier (Kodak Portra 400) ~ by Nick Kennedy

I required a camera that was light and small, so my options were down to point and shoots. On a budget I thought I would try my luck at second hand op shops.

To my luck the first Vinnie’s I walked into had an Olympus XA2 still in its original box with a flash and cosmetically it looked good too.

I was unsure whether it was working or had light leaks etc, so it was a bit of a risk taking an untested camera 10,650 kilometres not knowing if the images would be ruined by a light leak or any other failure, but for a mighty price of $15 I guess it was worth the risk.

The colour pallet of Patagonia (Kodak Ektar 100) ~ by Nick Kennedy
The striking beauty of the Cerro Torre Peaks (Kodak Ektar) ~ by Nick Kennedy
Looking back on the Laguna Torre walking Trail (Kodak Ektar) ~ by Nick Kennedy

The weather in Patagonia is almost unpredictable. One moment you could be getting smashed by horizontal rain in 100 km/h winds, then give it 20 minutes and you’ll be basking in sunlight with blue skies. These weather extremes completely grounds you as a human.

Ford Falcon in the humble town of El Chalten had us scratching our heads as to how it got there (Kodak Ektar) ~ by Nick Kennedy
The rugged foliage created a great framing of the imposing peaks of Mt Fitzroy (Kodak Portra 400) ~ by Nick Kennedy

I never previously liked the idea of point and shoot cameras, solely for the fact of not being in control and being able to add variables to create an “art” piece.

The views along the Laguna Torre walking trail leaves an impression that lasts a lifetime (Kodak Ektar) ~ by Nick Kennedy
The cars in El Chalten portray a used and abused lifestyle. Covered in rust and falling apart but still displaying some sweet patina (Kodak Ektar) ~ by Nick Kennedy

The little Olympus out performed my expectations, it was perfect for what I required and that was a pocket sized plastic box with a sharp lens. It amazed me the standard it delivered would be on par with that of an SLR.

No time was wasted arriving in El Chalten that day. It was straight on to the trails (Kodak Portra 400) ~ by Nick Kennedy

About Nick Kennedy

Nick is based in Sydney Australia, photography is his hobby and he is always endeavouring to convey emotions and feelings that are found in nature through the lens.

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