BoingBoing has an article on what one particular blogger packs to cover a war zone Being a fan of Gear Lists and blogging, of course I was interested to see what he was carrying. It was this statement, however, that really caught my eye:
I used to have redundant everything, but my gear weighed 60-70 pounds.
Now instead of carrying two of everyting, I carry duct tape to fix things and have descending redundancy--if my Canon goes down I can shoot video on the Nikon DSLR, if the DSLR goes down--I can shoot pix and video on my iPhone--when all else fails there's my the GoPro (but then the whole world is wide angle.)
On my last trip I noticed myself taking a similar inventory. My plan was to shoot photos mainly with my Canon T3i DSLR, I'd have my cell phone as a backup, and Shira's cell phone as a backup to that. If all else failed, I'd take notes/sketch in my notepad and buy post cards.
Things weren't always this way. I can recall one trip to a zoo in Australia where the batteries in camera went kaput. I had a very unhappy wife at the time. We probably improvised with a camera phone, but the results I'm sure were far from high quality (certainly not printable).
What's more, this trip I found that there were a number of times when my cell phone got more use than my DSLR. On the plane and train, for example, I found it much more convenient to stow my DSLR and take snapshots with my cell phone.
In the evenings while traveling, I normally copy over photos from my camera's SD card to my netbook and blog the results. This last trip I went out of my way to also copy over photos I'd snapped with my cell phone, too. The result was one big collection of photos, rather than having my camera ones ready for blogging and my cell phone ones living just on my handset.
I mention all this because I'm appreciating more and more that my cell phone isn't purely a backup, but is at times a camera more useful than my DSLR.