Walking down Fell’s Point in Baltimore (USA), I stumbled upon this extraordinary man smoking a cigarette outside of The Preservation Society & Fell’s Point Visitor Center which was closed down for the day. After exchanging a few words he offered me to step in to discover and share thoughts about a passion he has been pursuing since turning 9 years old. For the last 51 years, Mr. Jim has been building ship models as a selftaught. As a Vermont native, there is no doubt that wood carving has always been in his very own blood. Never short of fascinating stories, he kept telling me about his personal life experiences and long years serving in the US Marine Corps. At some point he got lucky enough not to land on the Vietnamese coast as his battle ship withdrew from its mission at the very last moment. The war had just ended. As Mr. Jim was working on a boat replica ordered by a famous historian, his sailor stories and life philosophy brought an almost mystical atmosphere to the room……
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The old barn is only a stone’s throw from where I live. This morning we woke up to hoar frost and the trees and fields were covered in a thick layer of frost. I have used the old barn as a back drop for several photo shoots over the years so I was disappointed to find it almost completely caved in on itself this morning. Once I am sure a beautiful structure sitting there at the foot of the hills with a great view of the valley. I was ill prepared to shoot this morning as I had driven off without gloves and my toque. With finger numb I came away with a few frames. All images are captured with the Fujifilm X-Pro1 with the XF 35 1.4R lens….
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The Fuji XF 35mm f/1.4 R is a very impressive lens in Fuji’s current X-mount lenses. Being the first to launch with the X-Pro1, it does have a couple of annoyances like aperture chatter, loose aperture ring and an awkward, easy to lose rubber lens cap. However, it makes up for those flaws optically, being a fast f/1.4 lens with excellent sharpness, as demonstrated in the “Optical Features” and “Lens Comparisons” pages of this review. Thanks to Fuji’s smart lens corrections capabilities, the lens performance is boosted to incredible levels, where the sharpness at f/1.4 is about the same as when stopped down to f/5.6 in the center. So if you shoot in JPEG format, or shoot in RAW and use post-processing software like Lightroom (which automatically applies lens corrections to all Fuji RAW files), you will be amazed by the results from this lens. The 35mm focal length is ideal for APS-C sensors, because it provides an equivalent angle of view as a 50mm lens on a full-frame camera. Such “standard” or “normal” focal length is suitable for many genres of photography such as street, travel, event and nature. And having a fast f/1.4 aperture, it is also suitable for low-light photography and even astrophotography. As such, I would recommend the Fuji XF 35mm f/1.4 to be among the first lenses to be considered, if you are planning to purchase a Fuji X-series camera…..
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Lately I’ve somewhat veered away from the technical aspects of photography in the blog, mostly posting short essays in between new Fuji gear reviews. But there is a point at which it might become too self-involved. I do realize that. So today I thought I’d break away from this and do a kind of anatomical review of one of those client shoots I never talk about, tech notes et al. I always ask permission to do it but I usually tend to shy away from posting client assignments. And since I’m usually knee deep in the immediacy of what I’m shooting, after a few months have passed it feels somehow irrelevant; I have a fetish for the here and now… Or maybe the two days ago ;) Last Spring I got a message via Facebook from Aida; she’d apparently been searching for a photographer for quite a long time, had just stumbled on my work and wanted to know if I’d be interested in doing a portrait session with her. We did a back and forth and I proposed that we meet to discuss what she had in mind. I don’t do cold sessions, ever — learned that one a long time ago. We had a wonderful time and settled on doing an exterior/interior shoot… But it was March: awful weather, crappy light and not a whole lot of it. Of course, when you don’t have a choice you deal with it, you make the best of what’s there; but if you can afford to wait, why bother? So we waited. And late April, the Gods of Light rewarded our decision……
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It was a typical Wednesday morning until I received that call. About 10:43am my iPhone rang. It was my mother calling to notify me that that my father had to stay at the hospital and have a neurosurgery consult. I was instantly shocked with disbelief as my father is as healthy as a horse. He’s 69 years old but he’s the kind of man that hasn’t slowed despite having been retired since 65. It turns out my father had been having some slight headaches on the right side of his head for the last few months and really didn’t much of them. As a family, we were all going through a trying time as my uncle, my father’s younger brother, had been battling cancer for about a year already and he simply attributed the headaches to stress. But my mother, always one to be top of things had requested a doctor’s appointment so that my father would go and get an MRI. To the surprise of everyone, the radiologist that interpreted the MRI said my father couldn’t go home and he must go see Neurosurgery immediately. My father had been diagnosed with a “subdural hematoma”. I suppose we need to define subdural hematoma. A subdural hematoma is bleeding between the space that divides the cranium and the actual brain…….
For my recent job – a shooting at the Filmcasino Munich – I decided to take the Fuji X-Pro1 as my only camera. No DSLR back up, so I was a little nervous how the camera will perform. I knew that the conditions would be very challenging, so I only took my fast primes (the FUJINON XF 35mm 1.4 and the XF 60mm 2.4) with me. As the show begun, pretty soon it was clear that there was no chance to shoot much lower than ISO 2500. For this kind of job flash is no really a opportunity because it will ruin most of the low light atmosphere. So let´s have a look at the pictures. You must click on them to enlarge. One last word to focusing: Most of the pictures were taken using autofocus. And yes, sometimes it was hard to focus at all – especially with the XF 60mm. But the XF 35mm lens really was a joy to use (make sure you get the latest firmware for camera end lens!)……
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Skyvandrer [Danish: Cloud- or Skywalker]. Walk on clouds. Free. To Live a creative live feeling free. Chasing the dreams of a 10 year old. My time spent in New Mexico is unique in this aspect. Mad mix of unfiltered emotions, freedom, making pictures, filming a documentary. Mad and Magic New Mexico. A long term work-in-progress collection of images from New Mexico and the American South West.
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We were at Corton beach for the weekend as Nicola had to check out a hotel for work. We went for a walk along the sea front this morning and i got to take a few shots with my Fuji. It was the first time I was able to test out my b+w 10 stop filter, although I didn’t have a remote release so had to keep my finger pressed down. Not an ideal way of taking the shots but a couple turned out ok. The weather wasn’t too good, but it made for some moody skies and interesting light. All shots taken with the Fuji X-Pro1 and XF 35mm Lens. Processed with VSCO film and Rebecca Lily presets…..
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Italy has a way of becoming part of you. I feel that I carry little pieces of it with me everywhere I go, and undoubtedly, I am spoiled forever when it comes to pizza, pasta, and a good latte macchiato. These images were all shot on my trusty little digital, the Fuji X-E1 with the Fujinon 35mm f/1.4 lens. I experimented a bit here with a black and white post process. I was never much of a black and white person, but it grows on me lately. This Sunday Johnny and I leave for a week in Paris, and we plan to shoot a lot of film – both black and white, and color. I can’t believe that this little Indiana girl will be photographing the Eiffel Tower soon, and sipping café by the Seine …..
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