Olympus OM-D review and come to lunch with me!

This post is brought to you by Olympus

It is exciting to be writing about the camera brand that I’ve been using since my early days in blogging. I’ve mentioned it before but my Dad has always been the Olympus man in the family and has traditionally bought all of my cameras for me and so this post was easy to write because we are such fans in my family.

Once I started taking photos in manual last year I made the switch from a traditional DSLR (I was using an Olympus E-620) to an Olympus OM-D. It was mainly because the picture quality was so fab on my dad’s photos. I did all of my research and decided on the E-M5 which at the time was the only OM-D model out. Olympus kindly gave me a demo model and I’ve been happily taking all of my photos with it since then. My dad upgraded to the E-M1 earlier this year which is the top of the line in the OM-D range and I’m excited to be telling you today about the E-M10 which is the latest in the OMD range and which I think makes a great camera for mums, dads, bloggers, tourists and everyone.

One of the things I loved when I made the switch from a traditional DSLR to the OM-D was the size, easy enough to pop my camera in my handbag without taking a separate camera bag with me. Both the camera and the lenses are smaller which make life so much easier but as you can see from the photos there is no compromise in quality.

For me taking photos is both work and play. There are photos that need to be taken for blog posts and events and then there are the photos I take to capture special moments and just the every day moments around here. I am always taking photos of my family and will keep taking photos long after the blog is gone.

The past few weeks I have been taking all of my photos on the E-M10 and having a new camera and a new house has been lots of fun as there have been so many moments to capture.  Now for those who like to get technical then there are a few features worth mentioning – tilting touch display screen, Wi-Fi to your smart device which will be fabulous for travelling or sharing photos straight away which of course we all like to do, twin control dials which you’ll find on the top of the camera, built in flash, built in electric viewfinder that also adjusts to the light conditions and maximum ISO of 25,600.

The differences between what my current camera the E-M5 and the E-M10 can do aren’t that huge. The memory card is accessed in a different spot, the E-M10 doesn’t have the weather sealing that the E-M5 does and the E-M10 is less expensive. But the E-M10 actually has some of  the latest technology that my camera doesn’t have like Wi-Fi and a few more art filters. The Wi-fi can be used through an app (android and iPhone) and you can remotely control your camera using your smart device. And if you’re not used to using art filters then they are fun and a great way to make your photos special,  especially if you’re taking your photos in auto. My favourite art filter that I’ve been using for a few years is the pin hole filter which I used for the next couple of photos.

The E-M10 can be purchased as the body alone (RRP $799) or in a kit with the 14-42 lens electronic zoom lens (RRP $999) which is a tiny but powerful lens. The great thing about compact cameras like the OM-D range is that the lenses are smaller. Now I could get all technical about micro four thirds technology but basically the lenses might look smaller than what you are used to but it’s all in the technology and you don’t compromise on picture quality in any way. All of these photos were taken in manual using the 14-42 lens……and I like the focus ring which my Pro lens has so that once you’ve zoomed in or out you can then adjust the ring which is towards the end of the lens to focus and really helps you take a better photo.

And since we’re talking photography and cameras here are my top tips for taking great photos

– always try to use natural light. I love early morning at our new house and late afternoon when the sun isn’t too bright and the light is just right.

– take your photos from different angles. Look down, look up, get more of the sky, hide behind a tree or wall. It’s fun to experiment and you can capture something special.

– follow the rule of thirds and try not to centre your subjects but have them off to one side (in a third). This also works well for nature with your ground in the bottom third and sky in the top two thirds

– get to know your light meter as that is when I had my a-ha moment when I could adjust the light in manual and it made a huge difference to my photos

– just take pics of your little ones naturally rather than posing. I have some real posers in my little family so I just get them to play and snap away.

– a prime lens like the 45mm which I use on my E-M5 is great for portraits and food shots and is one of my favourite lenses.

So all in all I’ll be a bit sad to give this camera back to Olympus. It’s been fun to use, it was super easy for me as it was so similar to my current camera, the picture quality is fabulous and as a blogger that is something that is really important to me. The lens was fun to use and made the camera really tiny and easy to pop in my handbag. The price is very attractive if you’re looking to take fabulous photos or get a bit more serious with your photography and I think it makes a great camera and addition to the OM-D range.

And now for the best bit I have 10 spots for my readers to join me for a workshop and lovely lunch in Sydney (Otto in Woolloomooloo) where we’ll learn how to take photos with the OM-D. The event is being held at noon on Monday 26th May and you will need to get yourself there. To be chosen to attend just let me know what your top photography tip is or perhaps you don’t have a tip and that’s why you need to attend so let me know why YOU need to attend. I’ll select 10 readers next Friday 9 th May and you can then mark the date in your diary. 

p.s don’t worry if you don’t live in or near Sydney you haven’t been forgotten. After the event I have an Olympus OM-D E-M10 to give away to one lucky reader so there is something to look forward to. 


  1. Jillian Holt says:

    Download the manual of your camera to an Ipad, so that you can always read up on the settings. Those menus can be confusing

  2. Corrie, Would the camera be suitable for a complete novice?
    May your blog be around for a very long time to come!!
    Cheers, Trish

    • oh absolutely! that’s what I love about it is that it is suitable for the beginner who wants to take great photos to the more advanced person who wants to use manual and flashier lenses:) I love my OM-D and wouldn’t use anything else.

  3. Emilie Hexton says:

    I purchased a Nikon SLR a couple of years ago which I love using for holidays, the family and special moments at home to capture. But I still don’t really know all the in’s and outs of photography and how to use it to it’s full capacity. I would love to see how the Olympus works!

    I’ve been looking for something new to focus my attention on and as a little
    Hobby so maybe this might be a great starting point? Plus I would get to spend time with the wonderful retro mummy and other fellow readers!

  4. Aw… I will be away then but going to make sure to share this wonderful opportunity on Facebook with my fans. (My tip would be to invest in sturdy tripod, you can take photos all the way to sundown) :-) Have a lovely lunch!

  5. omg – would love to come along. I am a sad photographer – only use my iPhone and keep saying we need to get a decent camera as we are forever taking photos of our wild garden and its treasures in the country. Have said that this year the only bday pressie I want is a camera and some lessons – the child’s go-pro does not cut the mustard at all!!!! Lunch sounds like fun – and what a perfect venue – the wharf is full of greta, bubbly energy.

  6. Hi Corrie,

    I need to attend because my only photography skilk is to take lots of pictures and hope there will be one good one in about fifty :) Statistically speaking this theory is flawed right from the start but it’s all I’ve got and I’m sticking to it…unless I win an inspiring lunch hint hint :)

  7. I am a complete novice photographer and hate that I miss the opportunity to capture the precious memories of a young family. Would love the opportunity to learn more!!

  8. Ummm can I be completely honest and say that I have never had a digital camera and have only relied on my smart phone to take photos :/ I need all the help I can get!

  9. Would absolutely love a chance to improve on my very average photography skills and I couldn’t think of a more perfect destination than at Otto, an absolute fav! Have been getting to know my camera a bit better since starting PeekyMe a year ago but I have so much to learn yet! Would love the chance to meet you as well and a fun lunch out with like minded creatives sounds divine!

  10. Cecilia says:

    Im just starting to get a hold on getting off the auto-setting and embracing the manual mode but I think the thing I’ve found best for top family shots (and I see you do too!) is a 50mm lense – getting up close and catching the beauty of those curious expressions each of the kids have that really reveal their personality. The only other tip is, leave the camera on the kitchen bench! You can grab it quickly when you need to and remember its there to catch wonderful moments.

  11. brenda Deguara says:

    I was told a long time ago to get up close when taking a photo of your kids This could relate to anything really, and by the way my kids hate when I do that. But I am starting a business and would love great tips for beautiful images of my work.
    x Brenda

  12. Thouraya Battye says:

    My favourite tip is to use natural light as much as possible as the play of light in nature is amazing. I would love to learn more about the current digital range as I am hoping to find a camera that maximises light and can capture it as cleanly and adjust as well the human eye.

  13. Melissa Ware says:

    I definately need all the tips i can get. I love to photograph my children but most the time i just cheat and use my iphone or use the auto mode on the camera! Would lov e to be able to capture all the beauty of everyday with the right tips and techniques to do so!

  14. Hi Corrie! I love shooting my dslr in manual and my best tips are to 1) find repetitive backgrounds or areas without lots of clutter 2) shoot with a higher shutter speed so the kids aren’t fuzzy and 3) unless you absolutely have to don’t go back to auto because learning comes with doing!

  15. Hi Corrie, I would love to come and learn some photography tips, maybe then I would have something to share!! I need a hobby and I’ve been thinking of taking a course in photography, so this giveaway is great timing. Spending some time with you and your readers sounds lovely and Otto – well that would be the icing on the cake!

  16. Caroline Egan says:

    Hi Corrie, I have been wanting to do a photography course for many years now but like so many have not been able to find the time with my three little boys keeping me busy! They are now 5, 3 & 9 months so I can almost see a window of opportunity to learn a new skill! I’ve always enjoyed taking photos on my travels pre-children and chosen the special ones to be framed and hung at home. During my teaching years (Kindergarten/5 & 6 year olds) I always loved taking photos of the children at work, play and just ‘being’ (my favourite!) and shared them with the parents which they enjoyed. I’d love to join you and learn with others in such a serene setting…..perfect for photo opportunities with all those beautiful boats! Best wishes!

  17. I love taking photos and have a large DSLR. I do often drag it around, and I love the picture quality, but I’d love to learn about these smaller models! I usually take photos of my children, or for friends at birthday parties etc. Any excuse will do :)

  18. Sounds like bliss, love playing with cameras, but I do have to say that I have been slack and only use my iphone at present, perhaps this is what i need to get me back behind a proper lens.

  19. Narelle Green says:

    I love to take shots along items or partial items. I find that it is more artistic.

  20. TURN OFF THE FLASH! is the best tip I ever received. I used to overindulge in awful flash photography… I’d LOVE to come to lunch x

  21. Salley Govey says:

    2 tips : (1) take photos of kids on a cloudy day…as it prevents strong shadows on their faces.
    (2) Take portrait shots of faces facing the sun as it is setting (late afternoon) because it gives a gorgeous glow to the skin…..especially kind to older (wrinklier) people!

    Thats about it… I’d love to learn more! Thankyou.

  22. Melissa Powell says:

    I need some tips!!! I have an 8 month old baby and most of her photos have been taken on my iPhone :( So I am in desperate need of tips to use my DSLR so I can have some gorgeous high quality pics of her.

  23. Samantha says:

    I like to add bokeh to my shots on my point and shoot by extending the lens as far as it will go, then making sure the distance between me and the subject is closer than the distance between the subject and the background. Makes the background beautifully bloomy for portraits.

  24. I need tips as all photos of my last bub are on an iPhone ( grainy and bad).. Be great to spend time with you too

  25. Katrina says:

    I need all the help that I can get with taking photos. When we only have 1 bub I could take the million shots hoping that something would work. Now with 4 boys, sadly #4 life is seen through the school photos and the Santa shots that I still insist on to prove his existence. HELP!!!
    (plus a lovely lunch would be such a fabulous treat)

  26. ainslie gaffney says:

    Corrie, I was so excited when I read about this giveaway. Your Retromummy photos truly were the inspiration behind our purchase of the OM-D EM5 back in August 2013! You might remember my comment on your post back way then… probably not but it’s there!! At the time I showed my husband your beautiful family shots and we agreed that we needed to invest in a good camera to capture our little ones before time got away from us. We have certainly been appreciative of your shared knowledge and have been most impressed with the lovely shots the camera takes time and time again. Now, I do have a little confession to make.. I haven’t taken the camera off automatic… as yet! I know it is capable of so much more & I would LOVE LOVE LOVE to come along to Otto, both to learn more about the camera I already own & spend time with you, the lady behind the blog post I always look forward to reading. My photo tip is… The time is now.. don’t think about taking more photos.. DO! Following a photo a day challenge on social media also helps to get you clicking away. Fingers crossed I see you in May x

  27. Belinda says:

    The only tip I have was passed down from my Opa (the photographer of the family and the person who investigated which camera I should buy as my first). It was to hold your breathe as you press down the shutter. Opa has passed away now so all the knowledge has gone with him. I wonder what he would think of all these new fancy cameras these days. I just remembered, he bought my mum’s first camera for her too… an Olympus. Lasted mum over 25 years too!

  28. MelindaB says:

    Where do I start! I wish I had some tips, but nope not me. I have had a BIG DSLR camera for quite a few years now and have been saying to myself for a looooooooong time I’ll get off auto and start using my camera to its full advantage, but here I am still stuck on auto. I even find I’m using my camera less and less, partly due to size so a smaller camera with all the features sounds awesome and going to manual continutes to sound so daunting. Having lunch with you & learning some tricks to enhance my photography skills sounds just like the opportunity I need to give me the kick up the butt to get off auto. :)

  29. We have just purchased a DSLR and I can take really lovely photos on auto but I really want to learn to use it in manual mode. Having little ones means I don’t get much time to read up on how to use it with all of the other tasks to do. My tip is to really take your time with taking the photo rather than snap and to use natural light.

  30. Hi Corrie

    I’m always photographing my 11 month old and I’d love to learn how to do this better at your workshop. I’m always trying to capture her new adventures especially with food but I’m not always fast enough and often end up with half a baby in the shot! My tip might seem a bit obvious but I’ve learnt to take a lot of photos of my daughter in a particular moment. I’ve been able to get more natural photos of her this way.

  31. I would love to come!
    My tip would be to take close up photos of the kids. Some of my best photos of the kids are of just their faces.

  32. Bianca says:

    I would love to have lunch with you and learn how to use my camera properly as I am missing out on all these amazing moments to capture of my kiddies as I still have lots to learn about how to use a digital camera :-)

  33. I would love to attend. One of my goals during my maternity leave was to learn how to use my camera in auto mode. It has been 6 months and I have been so busy with toddler and baby wrangling that I have not had a chance. I have also been following your blog avidly and would love to meet you!

  34. Nicole says:

    I don’t have a tip but my favourite shot if a close up of my son’s face. I especially like the blurring of the background in photos. I would love to attend the lunch and learn more about photography

  35. Nicole Hester says:

    My first camera was a black & white Kodak instamatic back in the 70s. I progressed through to SLR cameras over time but for the last few years I have only been using my iphone to take photos. I would love to try a DSLR and get plenty of practice taking photos of our puppy before the grandkids arrive (in a few years time).

  36. Oh Corrie, I have no tips but I desperately need them! I have a blog and one of the reasons I blog so infrequently is because in embarrassed about the quality (or lack thereof) of my photos! I’d love to learn! Jules xx

  37. georgia says:

    It has probably been said before but I guess my top tip would be to always have your camera with you and charged! I would love to update my camera to something smaller I currently have a cannon DSLR but it is an oldie and a bit cumbersome to have in your handbag. If you can’t have your camera with you make time each day to take a photo or at least on the weekend….. Would love to brush up on my photographic skills……

  38. I’m not in Sydney, but would love the camera! The reason being I’ve become so lazy i take all my images on my ipad at the moment.

  39. My tip when taking photos, would be get down low to where the action is, where the kids are especially when you have little ones.

  40. I need to attend as my photos always look a bit flat, however my 6 year old has a natural flair for taking photos.

  41. Alison says:

    Hi Corrie,
    I have no tips as I have no talent in taking photos. Actually I lie. I am an expert in red eye, eyes shut, faced blurred and random pocket photos. I have a 10 month old son whose entire life is only documented on my iPhone. It would be nice to get some tips but even nicer to have lunch without food flying everywhere!

  42. Hello Corrie, I’d love to learn about photography. I’m not sure if you’ve looked at my blog but the terrible photos say it all! I really admire a beautifully taken photograph. Besides, I’d love to meet you in person and what better place than Otto!

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