Back to April 2012, When I first purchased the variable ND filter (Vivitar Series 1) from Ebay. I desperate wanted to try out the newly acquired filter. Thus then, my bosses, colleagues and I went for a short trip in Kuantan’s Teluk Cempedak Beach and I couldn’t wait to shoot it with my X-Pro1 and 35mm. I got my first long exposure picture since then and these are the photos I uploaded to internet and felt proud about it. However, as I go through at the photos by the time I posting this. They just don’t look nice at all (Not afraid to show them). These pictures are over sharpening (probably due to filter glass quality so I did the harsh sharpening), color casting (overturned the variable ND filter and tried to have Big Stopper effect but epic failed), over exposure at the top part and composition are out……
All photos were taken by Fujifilm X-Pro1 and XE-2 with Samyang 8mm, 23mm, 35mm and 56mm
I haven’t put very large dent in my travel bucket list, but Havana, Cuba was most definitely on it. Living in Miami for the last 8 years, I went in with expectations in my head, most of which didn’t align with what I experienced in my short stay.Finally after a few false alarms myself, Dillon Hearns, Conall Keenan, John Mahoney and Matt Sosna joined a group from Amigo Skate. We loaded up our bikes, snorks and heavy bags of parts to help keep BMX and skateboarding alive in Cuba. All of the travel details of how this trip came to be are confusing and long winded. Travel to Cuba is somehow simple and complicated. Weight limits on all luggage. Exchanging money – US Dollars -> Euro -> Cuban Convertible Currency (CUC) to avoid the additional taxes. Having no phones once there. Questions from the TSA, German Shepherds before getting on the plane…The hours before takeoff were intense, I didn’t really believe I was going to Cuba directly from Miami until the plane was in the air.Somehow a 30 minute flight became spending half the day in both MIA and HAV airports. Finally we made through the excruciating moments of waiting for our bikes and the damage they may have incurred. Finally we made it to the exterior of José Martí International Airport, I was hit with what I could only described and some kind of sensory overload. Typically when I land at an airport I scatter to a tram or my motorcycle and I’m off. In Havana we were greeted by a few hundred locals, taxi drivers and assorted characters. It was surreal…..
Here are the 5 sets of images I made in Gran Canaria, Valencia and Barcelona this summer. All images were made with a Fujifilm X-T1 and mainly with the 18-55mm lens. I’ve been very, very pleased with the camera, it does everything I want with the minimum of fuss. It lets me get on with photography. It just works! Jpegs straight out the camera are first rate and RAW files have a lot of latitude for processing. I had some slight worries before about digital viewfinders, the X-E1 felt a bit like peering at a TV in someone else’s house from across the street. Not that I’ve ever done that….um… But the X-T1 viewfinder is massive – very bright and clear with very little lag . I was shooting in very bright sunlight and didn’t have any problems with either the viewfinder, or the screen. My last camera was a Canon 5Dmk2 and lugging it around for a day in the city (with associated lenses) was a pain in the arse. With the X-T1, the 18-55mm lens plus a spare battery (or three) I am set for a days shooting in the city…….
I’ve had the pleasure of owning my Fuji X-Pro1 for just over 2 years now (unfortunately I bought it when it was still ridiculously expensive) and although lots of people have talked of switching entirely from Nikon and Canon, I still have plenty of use for my 5D iii. I prefer the Canon for the odd wedding I shoot (I do use the X-Pro1 as a 2nd camera/back up) and I also use it for the odd freelance camera operating gig. The reason I bought the Fuji was pretty much the same as everyone else. I really couldn’t be bothered dragging round a massive DSLR to family things, holidays, weekends away etc but still wanted something that could shoot great quality images. When I decided to head off on a 6 week trip round the United States with 3 other people, taking the X-Pro1 and leaving the 5D was a no brainer. As well as taking plenty of pictures, I was also editing the images, updating Tumblr and creating Steller stories as I went, all without my trusty laptop. I think I had an almost perfect balance of kit and functionality for traveling so I thought I’d outline my process and the gear I took…….
It all started in July 2013 when I bought a Fuji X100s. Apart from being a gorgeous camera, it has amazing image quality and portability. I’ve been babbling on about it on these pages for a while. For what I shoot, when I shoot, it does a fantastic job. I recently printed the final image from this post on fine art paper at 13″ x 19″ and it is gorgeous! So I was reviewing the pictures I’d taken through the last 6 months of the 2013, and I realized that I hardly touched the D800E. It was a rapidly depreciating asset that I almost never used. With the addition of the teleconverters for the X100s, The only thing I needed the Nikon for was long lens work or super wide angle stuff. I also came to realize that 36MP is overkill for my needs. I decided to take to leap and sell the Nikon and most of the glass. Because of my experience with the little Fuji, I wanted to replace it with a small, light CSC that could go super wide and long to cover what I needed the Nikon for, but in a smaller package. I was going to stay with Fuji because I now knew it and was comfortable with the processing workflow, which is a very important consideration. I also want a viewfinder. I will always want a viewfinder. Always. So, given the extensive range of interchangeable compact cameras they do, how do I decide…….
Living in Alberta one could say that the flat prairies are kind of boring. They can be, yet at the same time they can be quite exciting. The prairies are not that flat, and depending which direction you go from Edmonton the landscape varies. If you go east, you will encounter typical flat prairies with huge skies. Go west and the landscape becomes hills and valleys, with lakes and streams. This time my a wife and me, decided to wonder east. There were several storms passing by as the sun was setting. We needed big skies. It was a little bit urgent, since we left late, and did not have a destination in mind. At the last moment we found a spot that looked half decent from the road, and since we were running out of time, we had to do with what we got. I shoot primarily with Fuji X cameras now. After ditching my Canons a few years back, I haven’t looked back. The Fuji 10-24mm F4 lens that was used to capture these images, is one of the best lenses I have used to create landscape photos….
Having owned my X100s for just a little over a week now and more or less taken it everywhere, I thought it would be an idea to talk about my initial impressions of it against my X-Pro1 which through 12 months of ownership I’ve had a bit of a love/hate relationship with. At times I feel the X-Pro1 is the best camera I’ve ever owned and at times I’ve felt I should sell up and start over with a completely different system. Coming from a pretty simple DSLR system of a Canon 5D Mark1 and a couple of primes to the Fuji X-Pro1 was certainly an eye opener for sure. Having always had that nagging feeling in the back of my mind that the X100 was the camera I really should own, I had the option to pick one up recently. I could have added another lens, or maybe even two to my X-Pro1 but felt now was the time to finally buy into the X100. I picked up a soon to be replaced almost new X100s which is perfect for everyday carrying around and with the 23mm fixed focal length is ideal for just about, well everything…….
Having had more than a week to mull over what worked and what didn’t on The People of Tay Bac Photo Expedition-Workshop, I come to the conclusion that it earns a B….not a B+, not a B-…just a plain B. However, the trip’s logistics and accommodations were faultless, and all the credit goes to the travel agent I work with in Hà Nội. They were responsive and on the ball at all times. I think the prevailing extraordinary high humidity levels we faced all through the trip played a significant role in dampening our energy levels (certainly mine were), especially in the streets of Hà Nội. That said, and set aside…here’s what I thought were home runs (or third base hits)…….
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……..
This is a short blog about Lee Filters, 3 Legged Thing and Fuji, and how these companies changed the way I shoot. I run a company called Ideas & Images. We provide both images and ideas to who ever wishes or wants them. Mostly we work within the Fashion world, the slow world of the landscape photographer seemed so far away……. A while ago, I had a lovely e-mail from a lovely company who make Filters. Lee Filters popped down to see me and left me with a set filters specifically designed for CSC cameras. The Seven5 System filters are smaller than the normal 100mm system. The Filter Holder is designed for the compact system cameras and can hold the Lee Seven5 75x90mm filters. Lee also have a range of adapters for all the Fuji & Zeiss lenses. (The Zeiss pictured below is 52mm where as the 18 -55 lens is 58mm. Most of the lenses have different filter sizes). Being a more from the fashion world, I had NEVER used a filter in my life that was a not a screw on style ND, a Polariser or generic camera filter…….