I am pretty stoked to be preparing to head off to Colorado to shoot the USA Cyclocross Nationals. I've been fortunate to shoot a few cross events this year.  I have grown to love cyclocros as an event. It has everything I like including bikes, great people, atmosphere and if you are lucky mud!  Here's a quick visual of a few of the events. 

Cross Vegas 2013 in Las Vegas, NV - I shot that image with the Olympus OMD EM5 with 75 f1.8

Cross Vegas 2013 in Las Vegas, NV - I shot that image with the Olympus OMD EM5 with 75 f1.8

All-City Bandit Cross here in Minneapolis, MN - I shot that image with my old Nikon D700 that has since been replaced with the Oly EM1!

All-City Bandit Cross here in Minneapolis, MN - I shot that image with my old Nikon D700 that has since been replaced with the Oly EM1!

MN State CX Championships - Brrrrrr!  Below Zero temps and my first event with the OMD EM1

MN State CX Championships - Brrrrrr!  Below Zero temps and my first event with the OMD EM1

So tonight I sit here getting ready to go to Boulder for the 2014 CX Nats and plan my gear.  I have grown in confidence with the EM1 and I learned quite a bit shooting a couple of events. I am expecting cold again so I am anticipating having to shoot with gloves. I've programed all my external controls the way I want them. The last thing I will do is set the Mysets. I will set one for slow panning with shutter speed at around 1/30th to 1/40th, IS OFF, auto ISO,  and the other set up for shooting motion with a higher shutter speed (will depend on my final lens choices - see below), IS on, ISO set depending on the light. I will of course shoot RAW.  

The tough part of me is choosing final lens selection for the trip. The 12-40 Pro is an easy choice, but I am struggling with the long lens choice now that I have given myself options. I am going back and forth between the 50-200 SWD and the 35-100 F2.  Tough choice I know.  My heart wants to bring the 35-100 because it such an amazing lens. It's heavy though and a bit slower to focus than the significantly lighter and quite a bit longer 50-200.  That said, I am leaning toward the 35-100 as it such a stunning lens.  I also plan to pack the 75mm f1.8 just because it is such a stunning lens and I like the way the camera handles with that on, meaning the EM1 is so light and powerful with that combination.  

Since I am shooting just for fun, I have a few goals for my shots at the events. 

  • 1 shot showing the intensity of the race
  • 1 shot showing the atmosphere
  • 1 really good portrait of one of the racers
  • Shoot one of the daily races on film

My back up camera for this whole event is my Contax G2. I am shooting film again with this incredible film camera.  With so many photographers shooting the same events with the same lens combinations; a wide angle short zoom and a 70-200 equivalent zoom) all the images are starting to look the same. I am attempting to find a different look and plan to shoot one of the races entirely on film to experiment.  Should be fun.

So....It looks like my gear list is as follows.

  • Olympus EM1 w/battery grip
  • Olympus 12-40 f2.8 Pro
  • Olympus 35-100 f2 SHG
  • Olympus 75 f1.8
  • 4-6 extra batteries
  • Every memory card I own
  • Contax G2 with 28, 45 and 90mm lenses
  • 5 rolls of Neopan 400 Professional
  • 5 rolls of Portra 400 Professional

Wish me luck. Be back next week to share some images, stories and experiences.

 

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