I’ve been a loyal Canon user since I’ve started photography, and I have nothing but praise for its cameras. I shall still retain my Canon 5DII and a bunch of lenses for as long as I can. However, I realized that my style of photography has evolved during the past few years…prompting me to splurge big time on a Leica M9, and not too long ago on a Fuji X-Pro1. The evolution of my way of seeing, the lightness of these two cameras and the quality of their images laid the foundation for my being ready and very receptive for a DSLR replacement. Traveling to photograph Holi in India earlier this year, and having to hold the 5DII at shoulder-length to photograph inside temples and avoid color powder/water bequeathed me a short-lived tennis-elbow like pain, but it made me realize that DSLRs are really heavy computers with lenses attached to them……
After the official workshop ended, as often, we offered an extension on the trip. The planned extension was to Srinagar Kashmir and the surrounding valley But as you might know the Kashmir region was faced with unprecedented flooding and there was no way we would be able to lead a workshop in such surroundings. So Piet, Alou and I had to put our heads together in a hurry and come up with an alternative for Kashmir. The obvious choice became the one we went with: the amazing Nubra Valley. The Nubra Valley is located Northeast of Leh over the Khardung La (Khardung Pass). The Khardung La is touted as being the highest motorable road in the world at 5,602 m (18,379 ft). Frankly I doubt that. Our GPSs all came in closer to 5,334 m (17,500 ft). Nevertheless, it is high! So much so there is a sign posted in all caps that reads, “STAYING FOR MORE THAN 20-25 mins CAN BE HARMFUL TO YOUR HEALTH”……
At the start of September, I headed to the Puglia region in Italy to shoot Mali and Bram’s wedding. Mali is my niece (although we are the same age; the family tree is complicated), and living continents apart as we do, we don’t get to participate in the big moments in each other’s lives much. So their big day was a special day for me too. The wedding itself was a weekend long affair. The bride and groom had arranged for an small group of their closest friends and family to celebrate their big day, by enjoying a relaxed time together in the idyllic Italian rural setting that is Masseria Montenapoleone. My good old X-Pro 1 was showing signs of imminent failure after the last 2 years of rough handling – files were randomly getting corrupted, and a quick look into this by Fuji’s service department suggested that it could be a sensor issue. Luckily, Fuji Nordic had lent me an X-E2 for the summer, so my gear for this event consisted of……..
Third Kozara MTB marathon took place yesterday organized by Austronet-procycling club from Prijedor who commissioned me to cover it. I was a bit nervous knowing the limitations of my equipment and on edge to borrow some different camera just in case. But… I didn’t. I decided to try out my Fuji and to find out how big are my own limitations. Anybody who ever tried to shoot with Fuji X-Pro 1 had to notice it’s superb quality but in the same time it’s lame AF performance. Fuji did a great thing by upgrading camera firmware constantly but still… X-Pro1 isn’t made for action and sports photography. Or maybe it is…? I’m quite satisfied with the final result. I relied on a well known recipe: scout a few locations few hours before the start, calculate your time well, get out of the way, set some lights, make test shots, PREFOCUS (this was the most important part), and wait……..
…. its been nearly 8 months since I got my hands on the X-T1 and I have used this camera under all possible conditions. I’ve shot weddings, baptisms, concerts, fashion, babies, street, wildlife with a 300mm Nikkor and a Kiwi adapter, lightning strikes under rain and wind, landscapes, long exposures and the list goes on. The Fuji X-T1 for my needs is the perfect tool. It may at times find it hard to grab focus when being pushed to its limits under some extreme lighting conditions such as very low light or bright light directly behind the subject but this is a very rare situation, in the last 8 months i only remember a couple of times when this has happened. Would a DSLR have done better – maybe, but overall, the X-T1’s performance has left me more than satisfied. The future is looking bright for the Fuji X series of cameras.
9 time Grammy award winner John Legend, performed at the recent Singapore Grandprix 2014. We were fortunate to catch his one hour live performance. Fantastic piano play, amazing band and fabulous singing! I brought my Xpro-1 to the concert as well, but given my longest XF lens is the 35mm 1.4, I decided to bring my old Minolta MD 135mm F2.8 lens mounted via an adapter. My trusty Ricoh GR covered the wide angle shots……
Earlier this month I took a trip down to Exmoor and Dartmoor, two landscapes that I’ve often wanted to explore, both are uniquely different and yet share a certain wildness and beauty. Exmoor is the master of variety with its hills, heather and the moorland sweeping towards a pebbled coastline beyond. Dartmoor is rugged, with it’s tors and sparse, expansive terrain. Both have wild ponies roaming the moorland, adding to the mystery and atmosphere, but my images of them I’m saving for a separate post. This photo set is all about the landscapes, captured on my Fujifilm X-T1 with my newly acquired 10-24mm. I hadn’t realised how much I missed an ultra wide until I buckled and purchased this lens, and I’m so glad I did. The 14mm was sharp and beautiful, a prime to it’s very soul, but the 10-24mm has a versatility that cannot be denied, and I really need that when I’m in the field. The weather was ideal, with the autumnal combination of mist and sunshine in the mornings at sunrise with the transitional colours of the moorland turning purple to orange. The evenings brought great light, but really, for me it’s always about the mornings. I hope you enjoy……
In the summer of 1982 I was stationed in Okinawa, Japan, as a U.S. Marine. My unit trained in mainland a couple times per year, giving me the opportunity to visit Tokyo. It was this point in my life that I discovered photography, and purchased my first 35mm SLR camera, a Yashica if I remember right. The city was a never ending playground for photography, and I went through many rolls of film, learning to use my new toy. Looking back now I wish that I had taken more photos……..