I thought I’d put this post together with these inspiring Charlie Waite videos in celebration of compact cameras, and to announce that I may be mostly departing from Canon compacts (my G11 and G10) in favor of the just-released Panasonic Lumix LX5.

Yesterday, I discovered this beautiful video in which Charlie Waite, one of the many photographers whom I’ve learned from, demonstrating what a joy it is to shoot this little gem; though, he says it won’t replace his Hasselblad, just like it won’t replace my Canon 5D Mark II.

“While it will never replace my other cameras,
I’ll certainly always have a space for a compact camera
at the ready in my  pocket.”

– Charlie Waite, master of composition and light

Transcribed by myself from the last video, below

This is a promo that doesn’t feel like a promo, opening the eyes of the heart!

In 2022, the video is still up at Panasonic Middle East & Africa


Lumix LX5 getestet von Charlie Waite

panasonic | August 30, 2010

And here is Charlie shooting with a variety of compact cameras, including the LX3 (the LX5’s predecessor):

Charlie Waite ‘Travelling Light’ Trailer

environmentfilms | March 22, 2010

Were pleased to announce that Travelling Light, our brand new DVD presented by leading landscape photographer, Charlie Waite is now available and, not only that, but friends of Environment Films can enjoy a special discounted rate of £12.00.

The one-hour film documents Charlie as he explores some of Southern Englands most charming locations, celebrating the landscape through his lens. Experimenting with a selection of popular digital cameras, Charlie proves that stunning images neednt be exclusive to larger cameras and that creativity and seeing is the key to successful photography.

Travelling Light is the first in a new series brought to you by Environment Films and Light and Land Publishing. Two more films, featuring different photographers will be available later this year.

Here are what seem to be more portions of this film:

Compact digital travel photography: colour and angles

Compact digital travel photography: choosing your subject

Compact digital travel photography: composition

Compact digital travel photography: portraits and perspective

Compact digital travel photography: editing and presentation

I was really hoping to fully stay with Canon, but the G12 doesn’t look like it’s going to be what I was looking for. I’ll really dread losing some of the long end reach, but the LX5 (Panasonic’s description) has a wider and faster lens, and is smaller.

It also has an aspect mode switch which isn’t at all a deal breaker for me, but will be great fun! This is a wonderful educational tool in which its unique sensor encourages shooters to choose the aspect ratio during shooting, instead of later, in the digital darkroom.

[Tech stuff, if you’re interested: the center of the sensor is actually wider than others, which results in 3:2 and 16:9 images that have more pixels. More of the lens is being used, so the field of view is also wider.

Here is a diagram of how the LX3 and now LX5 do it. I’m hoping that this new Leica lens doesn’t need as much barrel correction in software that the LX3’s lens needed, which actually lost 2MP in the process, which Panny actually lied about [we have to be so careful in these ‘wild world’ days]. I’m really hoping this new lens design corrected this problem, but I haven’t found a definitive answer so far.]

If there aren’t any disheartening surprises after it arrives in a few days, I’ll still be shooting the majority of my fine-art images (to be printed big) with the Canon 5D2, but I absolutely love shooting compact cameras, which can be so easily carried. Probably more than half of the images on this site were shot with the G10 and G11.

I’m also looking closely at the micro 4/3rds system. Such a camera would allow even wider angle and longer telephoto shooting, while having a bigger sensor that has bigger pixels. Perhaps someday….

Jeff : )


First major LX5 review published … if you’re looking to buy a high quality compact camera: Group test: Canon Powershot S95, Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX5, Nikon Coolpix P7000