Honolulu 2017 … no DSLR or laptop … only iPhone and iPad Pro … how did it go?

In the past whenever I have gone on a trip to Hawaii I always took my Pentax DSLR plus telephoto lenses plus my MacBook Pro, as well as my iPhone and iPad. This year, after upgrading to the iPad Pro last May, I decided to see if I could travel without my large camera or laptop.

One of my first questions was did I need my DSLR. For Waikiki the answer was a definite no … I have taken it for past trips but saw no need for this year. By not taking this camera I “lost” the ability to use long telephoto lenses but that is not really needed for where I would be going this year. And, I no longer had to carry 3-4 pounds of gear in my backpack!

The second question was could I “survive” (at least in my mind) with only an iPhone 6 and a smaller Ricoh GR II. The answer was I thought I could, which was partially predicated on my intention to upgrade my iPhone in the Fall.

The third question was how would I edit any photos I took on the trip. While the Photos app on the iPhone and iPad is fairly good, it is no where as good as desktop photo editing programs. But then, at the launch announcement for this year’s upgrade to the iPad Pro, Affinity Photo was demonstrated on the iPad … for the first time a tablet had a photo editor which was equivalent to a desktop editor. As soon as I upgraded to the iPad Pro I bought Affinity … reality lived up to the demo.

After reviewing every other program I normally used I determined that a trip without a laptop was very feasible for me. The one other purchase I made before my trip was to upgrade my older Garmin 910XT running watch which required a USB connection to download run information. But it was time for me to upgrade and I found a Garmin 920XT on sale and it connects directly to my iPhone.

During September and October I tried to use my iPad for almost everything I did and was successful. The last piece of the puzzle was to upgrade my 3 year old iPhone 6 to a new iPhone 8Plus which has a much better camera than the 6. I was now ready to vacation to the land of sunshine and warm temperatures.

I have now been in Waikiki for just over 3 weeks and haven’t missed my DSLR or laptop at all. All of the normal day-to-day email, Twitter, Facebook, etc uses are no problem on an iPad and with Affinity plus the iPad Pro plus the Apple Pencil photo editing has been easy and I am very pleased with the results. All of the following photos were taken with my iPhone 8Plus and edited in Affinity.

Overall, I am very pleased with my decision not to take my larger camera/lenses or my MacBook Pro plus all of the assorted charging cables, etc. My backpack was over 7 pounds lighter without all of this gear and I haven’t missed it all. Any future trips where I don’t see a need for a telephoto type lens will be done like this trip.

Now time to return to my beer and free pizza at Giovanni Pastrami in Waikiki … only 6 more days until I return to Vancouver and reality! But, once I return, I am really looking forward to more snowshoeing on Grouse Mountain! Transition from 25C tempertures to 0C temperatures!

Ps. This is my first post using the new Photo Blog Theme in WordPress. Really like what I am seeing so far.

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