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The Randal
  • Robert Ito1
  • Robert Ito
  • Robert Ito
  • Robert Ito
  • Robert Ito



Self discovery, to me, is the most pleasurable form of adventure travel.  Consequently, I generally avoid “herded sheep” type of tours which are often the norm.  I have only taken escorted tours where safety, logistics and regulations make it difficult to travel to certain areas and even then, my primary criteria are opportunities for explorations and unique, meaningful photographs.   Bhutan is one of these rare destinations.

Robin’s tour is relatively unique amongst tours.  A participant gets nearly all the benefits of a private tour, but also the pleasure of meeting others in a small group and the possibility of new friendships.  There’s also the wonderful opportunity to get to know the Bhutanese people; we spent a lot of time with the different drivers and guides as these were rotated each day, and of course we met, interacted with and photographed many other Bhutanese people.

In addition, the drivers and guides were most helpful in carrying our gear and otherwise watching out for us.  This was particularly useful for me as I am still recovering from a back injury resulting from carrying a lot of photographic gear on a trip to Alaska last year. 

I highly recommend Robin’s tours – the tours represent excellent value for adventurous people!

Photographically, on this trip I wanted to try to capture the intangible, ethereal and metaphysical qualities of Bhutan,   To this end I used camera and subject motion and occasional computer processing to abstract and create a transcendental feeling of place through visual means, rather than to just capture reality or to freeze a moment in time.   

Viewers may wonder “Doesn’t he have any needle sharp images?”.  Actually about 4000 of the 6000 of the images taken on the trip are in this latter category, but there are already lots of such images already on Robin’s website and elsewhere on the web.

Robert Ito, FCAPA, FEC, PhD
Director of Photographic Imaging
Canadian Association for Photographic Art

Carolyn Angus Camera Bag


  • Canon 5D Mk II and Canon 7D bodies with RRS L brackets
  • Canon lenses: 17-40, 24-105, 70-300 L, 70-200 f:2.8 Mk II, 85 f:1.8
  • Canon 550 EX flash
  • Gitzo G2228 carbon fibre tripod with RRS BH-40LR Ballhead
  •  Acratech leveling base, Jobu “sidekick” adapter
  • UN 8508 LCD loupe (very useful for checking images on location)
  • Memory cards: 272 GB in CF cards , 236 GB in SDHC cards
  • 1 TB USB 3.0 Western Digital pocket hard drive for image back-ups
  • 500 GB Hyperdrive Colorspace UDMA stand-alone back up storage unit
  • Laptop computer with 500 GB disk and USB 3.0 ports, Lightroom 3, CS5, ACDSee Pro 3, Allway Sync and other photo software
  • Lexar  USB 3.0 memory card reader
  • Panasonic GH1 camera with 14-140 lens
  • Casio EX-H20G pocket camera for geo-tagging locations
  • Polarizing and Variable neutral density filters
  • X-Rite camera color chart
  • Camera rain covers
  • Polaroid POGO portable photographic printer


  • Ouch! - this bag is heavy - good thing that we had help in carrying our gear!
  • My original intention was to use the 5D as my primary camera, but to avoid frequent lens changes I ended us using two cameras, the 5D with the 24 to 105 lens, and the 7D with the 70-300 lens or the 70-200 f:2.8 Mk II lens
  • Acratech levelling base and Jobu “sidekick” converts the RRS BH-40  ballhead into a free movement, 2 axis gimbal system for video shooting and action still photography
  • Variable neutral density(2 to 8 stops)  filters allow slow exposures for subject motion or camera motion photography
  • Least used equipment:  85 mm and 17-40mm lenses, 550 EX flash
  • Panasonic GH1camera primarily used for video but also as a still camera back-up
  • POGO printer was useful for producing on-location,  hard-copy gift photos for the Bhutanese people that  we met and photographed
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