Patrick La Roque

Lightroom CC & the Ghosts of Aperture | Patrick La Roque

So Lightroom CC is out. Yes, CC not 6; although there is or will be a 6. Which will be the same… I think. Frankly, it’s confusing as hell and I’m pretty sure it’s Adobe’s way of slowly getting folks psychologically ready for the inevitable total cloud switch. But, having hopped on board the Photography Plan last year I guess I can’t really bitch about it anymore. And unless the prices change, I still believe the arguments that made me decide to subscribe still hold true. I’ll be honest with you, I’m ambivalent about this release. Not because there aren’t nice additions and fixes but because I can’t help but find it lacking in imagination, given Adobe’s immense ressources. And because even at version 6, the reality is that it still trails behind the now defunct Aperture in way too many departments, even as it adds “new” Aperture inspired features. So while I started writing this post as a short overview of what was new in CC, it devolved into a re-examination of the application as a whole—something I haven’t done publicly in a long time……

Source: www.laroquephoto.com
 


Lightroom CC

Do you love my work and want to support me? If you’re planning on buying camera gear, you can check out above-noted links. Prices remain the same for you, but a small percentage of your purchase value is valued back to me. Thank you!


 

Hands-on: X-T1 and Lightroom Tethered Plugin. Yessss |
Patrick La Roque

Back in those halcyon days of Photokina, I stood on stage and shot two wonderful models with an X-T1, my images freely flowing through the miracle of USB, tethered to a PC laptop with… Beta software; there were hiccups. The hiccups were eventually fixed. I eventually got rid of those cold sweats and had a wonderful time. All of it was dependent on a PC-only application that was officially released a few months later. Good stuff. But I’m a Mac guy and I was still chomping at the bits… Until yesterday when Fujfilm announced what many of us had been waiting for with bated breath: Lightroom tethering plugins. Yes plural, as in Mac and PC. Folks, for the past 45 minutes I’ve been playing with a beta version of that plugin and I’m just giddy. I mean, I’d tried everything: Eye-Fi cards with Ad-Hoc network (shudder), the wonderful but limited (for this) Remote app, Lightroom Mobile (nope)… None of these could to the job properly and I had resigned myself to waiting, fingers crossed. I can tell you this: it may be in beta, but it just works. The plugin is installed like any other plugin, the easiest way being to open Plug-In Manager, click Add and navigate to the plugin file. Lightroom will install and enable the plugin right away, no restart required……..

Source: www.laroquephoto.com
 


Fuji X-T1

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The X100T: a review in five pieces | Patrick La Roque

That was me, waxing poetic during the intro of the X100S review almost two years ago. It may have seemed strange to some that a camera, a simple capture device, could elicit such a high level of emotion; but I believe objects can become more than the sum of their parts. These tools can become an extension of ourselves and when they do, something else happens: they inspire us. To this day when I see an X100 I have an almost Pavlovian response, something I can only describe as photographic withdrawal syndrome: it makes me need to shoot. Anything. It also infects me with a serious case of wanderlust, which I imagine is a byproduct of these cameras being my constant travel companions since the very first version hit the scene; I still own that original model with all its beautiful infuriating faults. The X100S was a no-brainer in terms of upgrades: miles ahead in almost every single aspect but form factor which, let’s face it, Fuji nailed on day one. But as great as it was, my close association with Fujifilm Canada as an X Photographer had a strange side effect: I never bought one. I had a review unit for a good while, then I wanted to buy my own but there was no stock available so they graciously sent me another loaner… Then the X-T1 came into the picture … Long story short: eventually it only made sense to wait for the next version which I knew was on the table……..

Source: www.laroquephoto.com
 


Fuji X100T

Do you love my work and want to support me? If you’re planning on buying camera gear, you can check out above-noted links. Prices remain the same for you, but a small percentage of your purchase value is valued back to me. Thank you!


 

48 hours. New York Stories | Patrick La Roque

Its 10:15 AM when we land at Laguardia — wait… I shouldn’t start like that. Hic et nunc, here and now; My french lit teacher used to hate this: too obvious, an “expected stratagem” he’d say. Good ‘ole Monsieur Godart… He’d repeat it over and over, sometimes taking a shoe off and banging it on someone’s desk to make his point. Crazy mofo… Good crazy — the kind that makes an impression. Still, it IS 10:15 AM. The last time I was in New York the towers were standing. That’s a whole other reality right there, a whole other reality away from this one. Sometimes life isn’t linear. Sometimes it jumps sideways and we’re left struggling in its wake. There’s a new theory out, something published and serious. According to this article our entire universe could be a holographic projection. Apparently it explains a whole big bunch of discrepancies in our understanding of the laws of physics at the quantum level. I guess Plato was right all along: we’re just the shadows projected by some far away world. Everything we know is a mirage. Makes you think doesn’t it? That science is now slowly proving the chemically induced fantasies of a million teenage kids, or every bad Hollywood ending ever shot — turns out it was allll aaaa dreeeaaammmm… Damn. If this is the reflection, you have to wonder what the hell kind of insane reality is out there…….

Source: www.laroquephoto.com
 


Fuji X-T1

Do you love my work and want to support me? If you’re planning on buying camera gear, you can check out above-noted links. Prices remain the same for you, but a small percentage of your purchase value is valued back to me. Thank you!


 

Announcements galore and a fix of Classic Chrome |
Patrick La Roque

The other feature I’ve been itching to get my hands on might seem almost silly to some: Classic Chrome. I should finally be getting to shoot the X100T next week and I’ll most likely be using that film simulation pretty much exclusively. I’ll talk more about film simulations in general in that review but for the time being, if you’re interested in using this today and you’re a raw shooter… Get Lightroom 5.7. I downloaded the update yesterday and I’m at long last getting my fix of Chrome. A few updates ago Adobe introduced Fujifilm Camera Calibration profiles that emulate the film simulations available in-camera. I first reviewed these here. I’m still not entirely sold on how LR5 decodes raf files but I do think they’re doing a great job on this particular feature. With yesterday’s update, they’ve added Classic Chrome to cameras that support it — in my case, the X-T1. I can’t wait to use the in-camera engine but in the meantime I can already predict this is going to become my default preset on raw files……

Source: www.laroquephoto.com
 


Fuji X-T1 Graphite Silver

Do you love my work and want to support me? If you’re planning on buying camera gear, you can check out above-noted links. Prices remain the same for you, but a small percentage of your purchase value is valued back to me. Thank you!


 

T-Minus Cologne | Patrick La Roque

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)…….
 
Source: www.laroquephoto.com

La Ferme | XF 56mm APD | Patrick La Roque

These are tentative steps, her first away from us; away from home. We spend a few hours moving in, exploring every nook and cranny, sharing her joy and excitement. But when the time comes for us leave… All that freedom becomes harder to bear. We walk away through tears and it’s hard but we know it’ll pass. A week from now, when we come back, she’ll barely say hello — too busy with her newfound friends. Letting go is the toughest necessary thing we do……
 
Source: www.laroquephoto.com
 


Fujifilm Fujinon XF 56mm F1.2 APD

Do you love my work and want to support me? If you’re planning on buying camera gear, you can check out above-noted links. Prices remain the same for you, but a small percentage of your purchase value is valued back to me. Thank you!


 

Blood Brothers: the Fujifilm XF 56mm f/1.2 R APD | Patrick La Roque

So yes, the rumours were true: Fujifilm has announced a new, different version of their stellar XF 56mm f/1.2 R lens — the XF 56mm f/1.2 R APD. I’m stressing the word different as opposed to better and I’ll explain why in a bit. APD stands for apodized. This is a process by which an optical filter is introduced inside the lens assembly to modify the way it renders out of focus areas — specifically, to make them smoother. And because this filter gets gradually darker at the edges, it also adds a slight vignetting effect. And I do mean slight: light falloff more than any real darkening. I was fortunate to again be hired by Fuji to shoot samples for this version as I had done for the previous model last winter, along with my Canadian colleague Nathan Elson from Calgary (his stunning images are here; very cool shoot). But the deadline and turnaround were a lot tighter this time and I barely had a few days with it. The lens Tokyo sent in was a prototype with nothing but a yellow sticker to distinguish it from my own “normal” 56mm. Since it wasn’t anywhere near a production model, this isn’t a review at all — just a look at the photo shoot and a few personal notes. And btw, these images aren’t the same versions you’ll find on the official product page: we send in unprocessed raw files for sample use. No retouching, no sharpening. Nada. It’s a humbling experience if there ever was one. The photos here were processed in LR5 with my usual methods (although Capture One was used as well for some of these; more on that eventually)……..

Source: www.laroquephoto.com
 


Fujifilm Fujinon XF 56mm F1.2 APD

Do you love my work and want to support me? If you’re planning on buying camera gear, you can check out above-noted links. Prices remain the same for you, but a small percentage of your purchase value is valued back to me. Thank you!


 

Eight hours, windswept | An X-T1 time-lapse experiment |
Patrick La Roque

As most of you know I’ve been using the X-T1 extensively — it’s become my main camera. Any minor gripes I had have effectively been swept away by daily use and rewiring most of my reflexes to this new body. I’ve even stopped hitting the dedicated video button by mistake… Although on that front I still have my fingers crossed for a customization update ;) I’d been meaning to do something with the new Interval Timer Shooting function for some time now, but while I’m often impressed by conceptual photography and projects involving tons of preparation and forethought, in my case it’s not the type of work that comes naturally. I also needed a subtext, a reason to do it beyond “Look Ma! Time-lapse!”… I’m not going to claim this is the most impressive example of time-lapse photography ever produced — we’re talking baby steps here, a first attempt. But on the whole I’m happy with the results and I think it fits in with what I usually do. So, before we dive into the BTS stuff, here it is (if you click on the HD icon you can see the 1080P version on Vimeo – well, a compressed version of it.) ……

See on www.laroquephoto.com

Snow days | a second look at the X-T1 | Patrick La Roque

Final Notes

I’ve been asked several times if the X-T1 is better than the X-Pro1. In certain ways it certainly is. But when you look at the X100S and the X-Pro1… Which one is better? There’s no answer to that. What’s exciting about Fuji’s lineup is that the differentiation doesn’t lie in cheaper bodies or artificial tech limitations for the sake of promoting the higher end. Beyond the natural evolution of the products, these are simply different cameras for different needs. There’s no good or bad here. The X-T1 is obviously the latest and greatest Fuji has to offer and it shows. After this weekend I’m over the moon about this camera. But the truth is we are absolutely spoiled for choice these days……

See more pictures on www.laroquephoto.com

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