The Fujifilm X100 was a real game changer in my photography. I was in need of something small, light and above all else, great in low light. But I got more than I bargained for and the X100 took me on a journey and made me realize the direction I really wanted to go. I still have my original X100, but after including many other X cameras to my kit, I’ve recently came full circle and rekindled my love of the X100 with the addition of an X100S. Although I have five X series cameras and many lenses, I have had an urge lately to carry less….much less. So I’ve limited my personal photography to the X100S (although not exclusively). But although I love the 35mm field of view (full frame wise), Sometimes I can be restricted in zooming with my feet and then have to take another body and lens(s)…..
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……..
I have been a big fan of the Fujifilm X range of cameras ever since I bought my first X100 back in June 2011. It was a big change from my DSLR, and although it had its quirks it was a joy to use. Fast forward a few years on I am literally hooked on the small form factor, versatility, performance and image quality offered by the growing Fujifilm X range of cameras. Two or three times per week I receive emails from photographers asking advice on things like, “Would the X range replace my DSLR?”. They are hard questions to address as, everyone’s needs are different, I only sporadically use my DSLR but when I do it tends to strengthen my draw to the X-range of cameras. For this reason I have decided to list just ten reasons why the Fujifilm X range is my first stop camera system…….
My name is João Marques i`m an amateur photographer living in Lisbon and i would like to tell about my experience, this holidays, in choosing which camera to take. So this year my vacations were on the beautiful greek islands of Santorini and Mykonos. When i was making my bag i had a hard decision to make, wich gear should I take? My options were carrying my heavyweight equipment: canon5d2+zeiss 21 2.8+sigma 35 1.4+ canon 70-200 2.8 IS II+manfrotto tripod+ lee filter set. Or go with my every day camera, the small, beautiful and excellent Fuji X100s. Since I had to take 7 flights in total, the choice was pretty easy, those were not a “photographic” vacations, my plan was to relax and bathing on the warmer mediterranean waters……
Just came back home to L.A. after 3 weeks in Italy and France. Had a fantastic time and loved every moment of the culture, food, architecture and history. Only brought the X100S plus three batteries and could not have been more pleased. Here are a few images from Italy and I’ll post some shots from France when I can go through them. Thanks for looking! Note: The Pompeii tattoo image is on the arm of our tour guide in front of the tattoos location with Mt.Vesuvius in the background. She was born in the area and is an archeologist who has excavated Pompeii. Her knowledge was immense and an incredible guide and I thought it would be fun to capture this image. The image of the large painted flower door with two rusting rings is from Venice. I thought it looked liked John Lennon……
A major impediment most new photographers face is that color is the default mode of expression. Not only are we inundated by color images in every possible medium, but digital cameras presume color as the chosen palette. The tragic fact of these defaults is that it interferes with the development of seeing subjects and places emphasis on the impossible task of trying to capture a color reality which makes little natural sense in two dimensions. The result is a great deal of frustration when the captured image doesn’t match the experience of color. Few cameras are available that address this problem. The Leica Monochrom is one of few. The Monochrom only records in black and white, and only displays its menus and previews in black and white. It’s the gold standard for capturing black and white—after film. However, the Monochrom body alone costs about $8k. That’s a lot of money to get rid of color. There are cheaper ways. The cheapest way to shoot black and white, of course, is to switch to film. Using a film rangefinder is one of the fastest routes to improving the composition and content of your images, and you don’t even need a darkroom…….
We’re almost there: tomorrow at 18h55 we fly to Frankfurt. Then it’s a train to Cologne and the adventure begins. I’d love to say everything’s packed and ready…. Sure… Like that’s how life works with three young kids in the house. But we’re getting there. Below is THE KIT: X100S with the wide and tele converters. I debated taking the X-T1 for a few hours, just enough time to realize I was reverting to exactly the same reflexes the X100 had liberated me from three years ago. Which lens do I take? This? No, that? No. Way. The reason I have the converters is because Fujifilm Canada is loaning them to me along with the X100S itself — I still have the X100 and they were nice enough to let me borrow this one for the duration of our trip. As much as I still love the original X100 there’s been quite a jump in performance since its release and I’m rather used to this by now. The X-T1 does tend to spoil a guy. The old X100 is fine for quick outings but Cologne, Venice and Rome? I might’ve regretted my choice along the way (even though I know the images would’ve been great)…….
It’s hot and humid here in the city this weekend–the summer’s last hard push before giving way to cooler, drier fall weather. The closeness of the buildings, the wide swaths of concrete, the subway–they all concentrate and hold the heat and humidity close to you, like a warm damp blanket wrapped around you. All images were taken with the Fuji X100s and the X-T1. Enjoy……
I really can’t give this camera enough credit for the impact it has had on my photographic life. It has made photography fun again, and the one thing I thought would be the biggest barrier (a single, fixed, 35mm lens) has turned out to be one of its greatest assets. The fixed lens has done two things for me: It has removed one variable from the process of making an image (focal length), and it has forced me to slow down and THINK about my photography more. I think my images are better for it. I also need to thank those who take the time to educate budding photographers like myself. We stand on the shoulders of those who have gone before us, and I am eternally grateful…..