The Photo Assassin

Even though I'm not a violent person - firmly against murder for any reason - I've always been intrigued by those assassin kits we often see in espionage movies.

You've probably seen the same scenes. Some rough-looking guy opens a violin case with neatly arranged rifle components inside. In just a minute or two, he precisely assembles the parts resulting in a weapon  that can be employed for his evil intentions.

From this point on, I'm pulling for the intended victim. "Please, just quickly step to the left and avoid your demise!" (They only hear me half the time...) 

I was thinking about this today as I devised a grip system for my Olympus Air camera. I wanted a better way to hold the device, so I dug around in my photo junk box and found a flash grip from the late 90s. 

It's a classic "L" bracket that breaks into two pieces for easy transport. I mounted my ikan micro spot LED light in the hot shoe, and used the tripod socket to connect the Olympus Air to the bottom of the bracket. All that was left was to attach the iPhone 6S to the back of the Air.

 My assembled kit includes the 16MP Olympus Air, zoom lens, adjustable LED light, iPhone 6S, and grip.

My assembled kit includes the 16MP Olympus Air, zoom lens, adjustable LED light, iPhone 6S, and grip.

The rig balances extremely well in my hands, is light, and the large Retina Display on the iPhone is a joy to compose with. Originally, I was only using the Olympus Air for  GoPro-like action shots or for hanging off tree branches. But now, it's totally fun to shoot with handheld too. (The only drawback was when my wife called during video recording. I felt odd talking into my camera during the conversation.)

 My disassembled kit ready for packing in my camera bag. (Photos by Derrick Story)

My disassembled kit ready for packing in my camera bag. (Photos by Derrick Story)

But here's the really cool part. When it came time to pack my rig and stash it in my camera bag, the parts took up hardly any space. I could fit the baseplate here, the light there, and slide the grip between those two thingies. 

Yes, I am the photo assassin.

I admit, I shoot people all the time. But I never hurt a soul. And I much prefer my Lowepro FastPack 150 to a violin case. 

But make no doubt about it... my aim is true.

-Derrick