You used to take the kids or Grannie on holiday at the seaside. Now you leave them home and take the phone, tablet, and camera and give them an outing. Which is fair enough, because most photo enthusiasts think more of their equipment than they do of their family anyway. Get your priorities right...

The daughter has just returned from a trip to Japan. It was a short visit, but as she speaks a little of the language, an enjoyable one for her. As it was a quick decision affair, I grabbed one of the spare cameras to send her off with - a dear old Fujifilm X10 that has been serving since 2012. You've seen weblog pictures taken with it years ago here on your screen. My first worry as I sent her off with it was the battery supply - the camera batteries were small in those days and these have aged. But the Fujifilm charger could be configured for the Japanese 117V system and I figured out of five of them, at least two should work. As it happened, they all did, and there was never a time when electricity wasn't available. The second concern was the settings that the camera would shoot with. I dialled up RAW and jpeg initially and then saw that it would eat up a great deal of memory. So I opted for large fine jpeg and then...

And some of us have them in colour. Instax cameras from Fujifilm are often in some pretty fashionable colours - they are primarily sold in Japan and the Japanese people have a surprisingly bright taste in colour. Witness the Shinkansen train in Tokyo station a few years ago as a heading image. And that's just a conservative one - recent pictures my daughter brought home of the Japanese trains shows even brighter and more sylish ones. They're gearing up to make the Olympics look very good. They also gear up with colourful ensembles - cameras and bags to carry them in - and they never forget that you need to tkae a number of Spare Instax film packs as well. You can have your dark moments...

I say clambake, because that is essentially what these little gems are - mollusc shells for your photographic gear. You get to keep your pearls safe. The Hardside CS 60 was the one I first picked up and I was immediately impressed with the rigidity of the nylon shell - not stiff and crackable but not floppy either. No idea what it's made of but it looks like it would provide a great deal of shock resistance. The inside would be perfect for the Fujifilm X-100F that is their current premium compact camera - the back-to-front dimension of this camera's 23mm pancake lens lets it lie in there with plenty of room. The new Fujifilm X-100V coming out next year is rumoured to be getting a new lens, so we'll have to see whether or not it will fit. Privately, I think Fujifilm would be very wise to update the close-focusing capability of the lens on this iconic camera, but I really hope they don't change the focal length or the external dimension. If they do fiddle with the focal length let's...

The Camera Electronic Emporium Of Imagination has struck again. I gathered an armload of Lowepro camera cases off the racks this morning and started to think hard about them. Hard is the operative word, as these are a departure from the normal floppy cases and bags that we see. Of course Lowepro make literelally dozens of styles of bags at any one time, and I would be willing to bet that in the 11 years since I started on the CE shop floor, there have been hundreds of designs pass through. And thousands of Lowepro bags are out there in Australia right now protecting camera gear. I've got two very old Nova 1's that trot out at intervals to carry specific camera combinations on trips. Okay - I've got two  1990's Lowepro's...

The upcoming holidays are expensive affairs - food, drink, decorations, housecleaning, etc. Whether you do it with a few people or a great many, you spend a lot of money, time, and effort to entertain and visit. If you are trying to fly somewhere the local baggage handlers, airline pilots, or ground staff generally commence industrial action. This is also expensive in terms of bookings, accommodation, and nervous stress. But where would Australia be without a holiday tradition like this...

There are several well-documented ways of curing a hardened heart: Read Emily Dickenson poems and weep silently. Read " The Pickwick Papers " by Dickens and laugh out loud. Triple bypass surgery. Buy a colourful camera. This last may not show up in the literary or medical world, but I can assure you it's real down at Camera Electronic. For some reason, the Nikon Corporation has its moments of whimsy and tends to translate them into photographic machinery. They are not all intended for the young, either...