It’s perhaps ironic that it was during our Street Photography trip to New York that we chose Havana, Cuba as our next destination. Ironic because we didn’t know then that the two week period we chose would see the first visit of a sitting U.S. President to the city in 90 years and with it an air of expectancy and change in a country unlike any other. The people of Cuba are extraordinary. Many live with little but are proud of what they have and in the often hostile world of the street photographer we were privileged to be welcomed so warmly and openly into their lives and even into their homes. In a city filled with extraordinary architecture, streets lined with classic 40’s and 50’s cars and an air of faded opulence and a forgotten time, we quickly realised that Havana is not about any of these things, it is about its citizens. So we found a ‘casa particular’ in the heart of the city and explored Havana street by street, with a small Easter weekend excursion to UNESCO world heritage site Trinidad to experience a different side of Cuba…….
Recently I had the pleasure of a couple of days away in Brighton, and couldn’t resist taking my recently acquired Fuji X100T along with me, which I am slowly falling for more and more. It’s the perfect day to day camera, light and easy to use, with sufficient control to give great photos as you want. Having bought the X100T one of the items I really wanted for it was the TCL-X100 – a tele converter lens adapter which takes it from an APSC 35mm to 50mm. Now I love 50mm, I’ve shot more with this focal length than anything else, so when I bought the X100T, this was the one accessory that was required and to be honest, as much as I love the X100T, the TCL-X100 turns it into an almost perfect option for me. It doesn’t appear to negate the quality of the images you get, and of course, with a few quick turns the lens is off and you go back to 35mm without fuss. I’ll be writing up more of my thoughts on both the X100T and TCL-X100 in time as I get to know them better…….
Last week we took a little time out to visit some friends now living in Mallorca and had a fantastic week catching up with old friends and making some new ones. Towards the end of our trip we visited the capital Palma to experience the city and soak in a little more of the culture of the Island and, perhaps inevitably, we couldn’t resist hitting the streets for the day with our trusty Fuji X-T1s. As we roamed this beautiful city and watched the bright morning light gradually fade through to a warm evening dusk this is what we saw…….
Cuba has light. Cuba has shadow. Cuba has decaying colonial grandeur. But what really matters is that Cuba has Cubans. Almost any place in the Caribbean contains the strains of African, Spanish and Anglo tradition that come together on its largest island. But nowhere else do they come together to such effect. Maybe it’s the land—after the Revolution uprooted the capitalists half a century ago, tobacco growers packed up seeds on their way out to plant them in Central America, but it turned out it wasn’t the seeds that made a cigar Cuban. It was the soil of Pinar del Rio, on the island’s western reaches. Apparently there is no place on earth like it…..
Only three days in any major city is not enough – but that’s especially true for Tokyo. This city has always been on my „bucket list“ so I was fortunate that circumstances brought me here, if only for a short time. I limited my gear to my Fuji X-T1 and probably my favorite lens,the excellent Fujifilm XF 23mm f/1.4 R, which is perfect for travel. Tokyo is such an interesting place, it’s almost overwhelming – there was always something interesting to catch my eye. The X-T1, as always, proved to be a worthy camera in some challenging conditions. I will always remember Tokyo as the city I first used my Pano mode! Lol. Here are some of my favorite shots……..
In Mastering Lenses I wrote a piece about the idea of simplicity in lens choice. I asked the question, if you could only own three lenses, which would they be? Of course, you have the freedom to buy as many lenses as you want, but it’s an interesting point to discuss as there are benefits in owning just three. You save money. It’s easy to get caught up in what has become known as gear acquisition syndrome – the desire to buy more gear in the belief that your photography will improve when you do so. Yes, it’s important to have the right tools, but the lenses you own should be determined by your needs rather than your desires. For example, if you take a lot of close-up photos then a macro lens is probably a good investment. But if you only take close-ups every now and then an extension tube or close-up lens is a better choice……..
A love story… As 2015 came to an end, sadly, so did PROJECT 23. It took me out onto the streets of Melbourne, with my trusted Fujifilm X100S for 23 weeks, and gave me the opportunity to collaborate with Fujifilm Australia. I was left with mixed emotions. I always feel great after completing a successful creative project – to see the results, the feedback, and the experience itself is an extremely satisfying feeling. However at the same time, I always feel lost and find myself coming up with all these new ideas for new projects so that I can get myself back out there to begin something new. Whether the project is two weeks or six months, I have a longing and excitement when I’m finished to begin what’s next……..
Welcome to my 2K15 in photographs. I find beauty in everyday trifles. Love nature and people. Less is more. Dedicated to my wife and kids. Life is a wonder! A year in 12 photographs taken with a Fuji X100S or T and edited with VSCOcam. All pictures taken by Markus Fischer in Switzerland…….
My lungs were pumping while I was running through the narrow streets of Naples. A middle aged man dressed in a black hoodie chased me after we had bumped together at a street corner. I had told him I was sorry for that and had continued my walk through Spaccanapoli. But from a distance he had begun shouting at me in an incomprehensible dialect. He had held something I couldn’t recognize up in the air and he had pointed at me with it. People around him had tried to calm him while he was shouting at me. I had begun to walk faster. A peek above my shoulder revealed that he had started to follow me. My walking accelerated to running. He was shouting loudly behind me. Perhaps he didn’t accept my excuse after having bumped together……
The market of San Miguel off the Calle Mayor is a bustling market attracting many tourists but also serving locals alike. The people who earn their living there work very hard and have long hours. At the end of a days work you can easily see the tiredness on their faces. These photographs were shot on a Fuji X 100S or a Fuji XT1 with the 16mm – 55mm lens. Information in exif data for shooting setup for each photograph……..