ERIC KIM

Review of the Fujifilm x100s for Street Photography | Eric Kim

I remember when the Fujifilm x100 first came out. It was quite the commotion– it seemed like the best camera for street photography. It was designed like a rangefinder, but didn’t have the sticker price of a digital Leica. It sported a compact body, fixed 35mm f/2 lens, and an optical viewfinder. It seemed like the perfect camera for street photography. Early adopters of the camera either really loved the camera or were very frustrated with it. Common complaints I heard was the slow autofocusing speed, complicated menus, and difficulty to use manual focusing with the camera. But for those who stuck with the x100– they learned to work around the quirks of the camera and really made some superb images from it (like Rinzi Ruiz, Jack Simon, Brian Day, and many more). When the x100s came out, it solved a lot of the issues from the original x100. The menus were simpler, the autofocusing speeds were drastically improved, and the sensor was also given an upgrade………

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Debunking the „Myth of the Decisive Moment“ | Eric Kim

When I started off in street photography, I believed in the “myth of the decisive moment”. What do I mean by that? Well, when I first heard of “The Decisive Moment” by Henri Cartier Bresson, I had the wrong impression that he only took one photo of a scene. I imagined Henri Cartier Bresson waltzing into a street scene, carefully aiming his Leica, and taking only one shot and creating masterpieces. I thought he was a demigod– a photographer who somehow had this magic behind his lens. However if we look at his contact sheets, it is a different story. He (and almost all great photographers) never only take one photo of a great potential scene. Out of Henri Cartier Bresson’s contact sheets, you can see that almost all of his great images required him “working the scene”– taking multiple photos of the same scene at different angles, moments, and perspectives. He hustled hard to get the shots he wanted– and would spend considerable time with his contact sheets, determining which photos he decided were his “best”…….

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Working on Layers: Manila Street Photography GoPro POV with the
Fujifilm x100s | Eric Kim

 
In this video I shot with the Fujifilm x100s and pre-focused my lens to around 5-10 meters (manual focus), shot at f/8, ISO 800, aperture-priority mode, optical viewfinder, and worked on trying to get more layers in the shot. The technique I used here was trying to get someone in the extreme foreground in the photo, and the subject in the background sharp. You can read more about this approach in my “Multiple Subjects” composition lesson. In addition, I also made a conscious effort to stick around and “work the scene” — by taking multiple shots of the same scene, rather than just taking one shot and moving on…….

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Capturing the Emotional Connection to People, Places, and
Objects: Interview with Christophe Agou from In-Public | Eric Kim

Christophe Agou is a street photographer from France, currently based in New York. He is a part of In-Public, and his published works include „Life Below: The New York Subway“ and his newest book: „LES FAITS SECONDAIRES” (SECONDARY FACTS)…….

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How to Post-Process Your Street Photography into Black & White
in Lightroom 5 and Silver Efex Pro 2 | Eric Kim

My good friend and talented photographer Gary Tyson from F8 Photography in Hong Kong has recently put together a very helpful video on how to convert Fujifilm X-T1 RAW files into black & white with Lightroom 5.4 and Silver Efex Pro 2. If you are unfamiliar with post-processing your street photography into black & white, the instructions is a great starting point for any camera. You can also download my black & white Neopan 1600 for Lightroom here. You can download all my Lightroom presets for free here…….

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Real-World Review of the Fujfilm X-T1 for Street Photography |
Eric Kim

X-T1 vs x100s?

Fuji has been quite prolific with their X-series cameras. There are so many models out there now, it might be difficult to choose an “ideal” camera for street photography. I’d say the only 2 “real” competitors for street photography are the X-T1 and the x100s. Why not the X-Pro 1? Well, it is pretty much like an older version of the X-T1 and has really slow autofocus. I’m going to try to list the pros/cons of the X-T1 and the x100s to help you make a better decision when deciding which one to get:

X-T1 Pros:

  •     Interchangeable lens options
  •     Dedicated ISO dial
  •     Faster / more accurate AF

X-T1 Cons:

  •     No optical viewfinder (if you prefer an optical finder)

x100s Pros:

  •     Smaller form factor
  •     Lighter
  •     Optical viewfinder

x100s Cons:

  •     Slower and less accurate AF
  •     Lack of interchangeable lens (if you like a 35mm focal length, then this isn’t a con)

So pretty much at the end of the day this is how I would make my decision: If you absolutely need an optical viewfinder, get the x100s. Otherwise, I’d get the X-T1. Why? The X-T1 is the newer, slicker, more capable, and powerful camera. Not only that, but the AF is far better in the X-T1 than the x100s. Also you can use different lenses (even manual M-mount lenses), and quickly change the ISO with the top dial…….

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Review of the Fujifilm X-T1 for Street Photography | Eric Kim

When I was here in Dubai for Gulf Photo Plus, the guys from Fujifilm were generous enough to give me a new Fujifilm X-T1, the Fujifilm 23mm f/1.4 (35mm full-frame equivalent), as well as the Fujifilm 27mm f/2.8 Lens (~40mm full-frame equivalent). I shot with it everyday for around a week. Overall I like the camera a lot and would highly recommend it (superb image quality, great form factor, and responsive). Some downsides are that the AF isn’t as accurate and quick as other cameras (like the Olympus OMD)– although it is a huge improvement from the X-Pro 1 and x100s. Hope this improves with future firmware updates…..

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On Failure and Street Photography | Eric Kim

Street photography is all about failure. The failure to have the courage to take that one shot. The failure to capture “the decisive moment.” The failure to get a clean background. The failure to have your subject make eye contact. The failure to move your feet to get a better frame. The failure to get recognition for your work. The failure to have your photo get “explored” on Flickr. Failures upon failures upon failures. I think one of the things that initially drew me to street photography is just how damn hard it is. It was unlike any other form of photography out there. It was so unpredictable. Whereas when I shot landscape, macro, or architecture– I could take however long I wanted, and I had so much in my control. But with street photography, I had to learn to relinquish control to simply “go with the flow.” I couldn’t control the light, control how people looked, the background– all I could control is how well I could move my feet, and click the shutter at what I thought would be the “right” moment…..

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103 Things I’ve Learned About Street Photography | Eric Kim

Over the years, I have learned a lot of lessons about street photography. Below is a compilation of some quotes, thoughts, and philosophies which have influenced me and my street photography. None of my ideas are original – some are based on personal experiences and others are based on ideas I heard from books, lectures, and on the internet. And of course, this is not a definitive list of what you “have to do” in street photography – rather it is some of my personal thoughts ….

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14 Lessons Elliott Erwitt Has Taught Me About Street Photography |
Eric Kim

USA. New York. 2000. © Elliott Erwitt / Magnum Photos

If you are not familiar with the work of Elliott Erwitt, you have definitely seen many of Elliott Erwitt’s iconic work all around the globe. As one of the original Magnum members and former president, he has one of the longest spanning photography careers- spanning over 50 years. What I most appreciate about Elliott Erwitt is his wry sense of humor when looking at the world– as well as his straightforward and nonsensical philosophies about photography. When sharing his thoughts and advice, I think he is one of the most practical and helpful- especially based on his decades of experience. I share some things I personally have learned from him in the article below…..

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