I saw that a lot of guys here went to Morocco or Africa and I'm planning my first trip there, so I'm quite enthuziastic about it. Actually this is my first big trip, so I have a lot of reading to do in these remaining months.
I will be there in March 2010 and as far as I read, it's a good time to be in Morocco.
I want to make the best photos I can, but I am bit puzzled with the gear I need to take. So far my photography experience is quite limitted and I have never taken photographs of things similar to what I will find there.
I currently have a Nikon D80 + 10-20 wide sigma lens + 35mm f2 fixed lens and a good tripod.
My questions for the ones of you that carried photographic gear are these:
1. Is it worth to take my tripod? It's a Manfrotto and it's not that light (but not too heavy either). In the last trip I made, the nightshots were the best ones from the whole trip and I did not have the tripod with me, so I would say it's better to take it this time.
2. What choice of lens is the best? I can buy one especially for this trip, but don't really know what to choose. Should a go for a "normal zoom", or a telephoto zoom? Do I need a 2.8 (bigger, heavier) or I can do just fine with a normal zoom? I was looking at photos on the web and I think a zoom is a must, especially in the desert and in the wild, but maybe i'm wrong? Of course I want to be as light as possible, but still have *almost* everything I need in terms of focal lenght.
3. How did you carry your gear on the bike? I will be riding on a XT600 with an Acerbis tank and I can only fit a small tankbag (wolfman enduro) (the d80 + 10-20 + 35 just fit)
4. How did you carry your gear when in big cities and crowded places? I've read that they steal a lot, so care should be taken I suppose
5. How about the desert? What did you do to protect your gear from excessive sand/dust, especially when switching lenses? I am usually not worried about this and never had problems with changing lenses if it's a bit raining or dusty outside, but desert and tons of sand is a different story.
6. Did you do both photos and movies? I am talking about having a DSLR and a movie camera, so having to deal with both. Is it a bit of a strech? I really want to document this trip as good as I can and I would like to have both photos and movies, but I am afraid that if I will want to do both, I will fail to do either of them to an acceptable level.
7. How do the local ppl react when you take a picture with them? Are they angry, happy, indiferent? What is the best approach to deal with people if you want to take pictures with them? Take the picture first and then see what happens or tell them before? Their culture is very different from mine so I don't really now what to expect.
8. How about the owners of buildings/animals? Is is ok to take pictures with their belongings?
9. Are there any special issues or things related to muslim religion that are somehow connected to photography that I should be aware of?
10. Pfu, I think you are already bored now ... but the last question is about general tips and tricks you might have about things not to miss, maybe better angles for common objects, or general advice you might share about photography in Morocco
(e.g. a camel looks better if you take a picture from a 45degree angle then from the side)
Thanks for reading and hope to get some advice from you.
Adrian from Cluj Napoca, Romania