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Gear & Apps

The Smallest Photo Office In the World | Jens Lennartsson

By Kishore Sawh on May 29th 2016

What do you need to run a photography business? A certain level of business acumen? Doesn’t hurt. How about a studio? That depends. Certainly you need a camera, a stable of lenses and lights and back-ups of them all? Maybe not. And that’s just it, really, photography and everything to do with it is entirely contextually dependent.

Flying in the face of the photography world’s common opinion is Jens Lennartsson, perhaps better known as *The Zen Photographer*. Jens, is a self-admitted evolving form, freeing himself from the constructs of calling himself strictly a photographer or writer, he prefers ‘storyteller’. A quick look at his Instagram, or his less superficial work on Medium, and you’ll see that’s a pretty accurate description. And when you look at the breadth of work he has created, the volume and the quality, you might expect the tools of his craft to be contained in an office, rather than a satchel, but it’s the latter where it actually lies.

Jens has recently put together a short video breaking down the tools with which he works, and put in a pile they’re no bigger, as he says, than a hamburger. It’s quite remarkable actually, and even enviable. That he should be able to create the images he creates and the written pieces he publishes is a reminder of one extremely important thing which I will continue to echo throughout the year: Self-imposed restrictions force good storytelling.

Here’s the sum total of all Lens uses to do what he does:

Camera: Fuji X100T
Notebook: Leuchturm 1917 Softcover Pocket Blank
Phone: iPhone 6 64GB
Keyboard: Flyshark Foldable

E-reader: Kindle Paperwhite 2
Power Source: EC Technology 22400mAh 3 USB
iA Writer

*Two of these items are currently on sale, and two of the best. The Fuji X100T is hundreds lower than list right now, and iA writer is currently 50% off. On a personal note, iA Writer is just magic if you write to publish, for a blog, magazine, emails, whatever, and it’s what I use…

Outside Rosignano Solvay, Italy.

A photo posted by Indiana Jens (@jenslennartsson) on

Best asian food in Williamsburgh! At Yebisu Raben.

A photo posted by Indiana Jens (@jenslennartsson) on

[REWIND: Review: Fuji X-E2 | The Mistress]

That’s it…

Of course, some of you will scoff at this, immediately refuting the idea that a wedding photographer or any working photographer can endure without a large ThinkTank of gear, but perhaps you might be better served to pause and reflect and see if there’s anywhere in your photography life you can reduce and restrict – you may be able to de-clutter and focus, and be better off for it. Remember, no one reading/viewing a story gives a damn what was used to make it, if it’s compelling.

Check out Jens’ work on Instagram by clicking here or any of the images above, and his site here, and his work on Medium.

Via: ISO1200

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A photographer and writer based in Miami, he can often be found at dog parks, and airports in London and Toronto. He is also a tremendous fan of flossing and the happiest guy around when the company’s good.

Q&A Discussions

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  1. Paul Wynn

    I’ve now got my first mirrorless camera with WiFi capability, as my next step to becoming more connected and productive on the move.

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  2. Steven Pellegrino

    This article has been posted on a couple of other photography blogs this past week and you should understand, looking at all of his work, it wasn’t all created with the X100t. He also does shoot with a full frame Nikon. His entire professional workflow isn’t what you’re seeing here.

    That being said it’s an inspiring concept worthy of exploration. My work as a photojournalist could benefit from this. Right now I don’t have the ability to transmit photos from my camera to my phone, but am looking at the new Nikon DL 24-85 to replace the bulk of my digital gear. I never have to do heavy editing and SnapSeed can take care of all of those needs. There is an app for everything and it’s now easy to add IPTC data and ftp to the wire all from my phone.

    Expanding this kit to include a small, lightweight LED lighting panel or ring light wouldn’t add much bulk. For me the goal isn’t to have everything in my pockets, but reduce it down to fit into a small Domke bag. Eliminate 2 DSLR’s, heavy lenses and a laptop has me saving a lot of wear and tear on my body.

    I’ve already ordered and have received a folding keyboard, which is perfect for me since I was never proficient typing on a phone.

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  3. Brian Pendley

    I’m left wondering about his image work flow from the x100t to the iPhone.

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  4. Paul Wynn

    Okay so this approach will not work for everyone, but it does make you think. I believe you would need some kind of portable lighting though. Anyway just ordered myself a wireless foldable keyboard and external battery, which I have been meaning to do for sometime. Thanks for the prompt.

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    • Kishore Sawh

      You know, that foldable keyboard looks brilliant, and I’m left wanting. I have a keyboard for my iPad, but not a folding one, and with as much writing as I’m accustomed to… I think it’ll be my next purchase. Cheers Paul

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    • Paul Wynn

      I got the EC Technology keyboard this week, just brilliant and will probably be my favourite gear of the year. I also got myself the supporting EC Technology Power Bank, so starting to feel liberated.

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    • Kishore Sawh

      Dammit Paul, off to the shop I go thanks to you! ;-) Enjoy

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