When I first went freelance I treated myself to some new gear. I bought a laptop – a necessary business expense – and a new camera, the Fuji X-Pro1, which at the time was on a special deal whereby you bought the body and an 18mm F2 lens for £999, and got a free lens from a choice of 27mm, 35mm or 60mm by redemption. I went for the 35mm F1.4. Financially, it wasn’t perhaps the best idea – I hadn’t completely got my head around how long it takes to get paid when you’re self-employed – but I don’t regret it. The weight, size, understated appearance and image quality of the X-Pro1 have made it feel like a great investment……..
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There are lots of benefits of using the tiny and silent Fuji X100S to photograph a wedding. Although I mainly use Canon cameras through the wedding day, there are many great opportunities when this little camera is a better option for me. That’s usually when I want to get in close to my subjects without affecting their behaviour. Its small size, and silence is what’s most important here. But there have been small and quiet compact cameras around for a while now – what makes the Fuji different is the amazing clarity and image quality. These images fit in perfectly with those shot on the larger Canon SLR’s, and it’s pretty hard to distinguish between them in the finished set. To prove this point, all of these images were shot on the Fuji X100S. I’ve used the camera during the preparations as well as when doing the portrait session with the bride and groom. Also over the last year, I’ve been trying to put my heavy DSLR’s in the bag for an hour or so, and just mingle with the guests. The camera and sensor are versatile enough to be able to use it in more or less any lighting conditions, so I can concentrate on recognising great moments and the composition……
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Maybe you have noticed on Facebook or elsewhere that I have sold my complete Nikon photo equipment and switched to mirrorless Fuji X in November 2013. I promised to write this article, explain the reasons that led me to the change and share my first impressions with the new camera. I know, there are tons of articles about Fuji X around the internet, but I hope also this information may help someone in his/her decision making…….
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A 5 story building transformed into a 360 degree panoramic stage of sound and video. A metro train converted into a moving spectacle of live music, loaded with speakers. An underground grotto-like former water cistern became the Mines of Moria from Lord of the Rings, complete with Balrog. And the final party featured thousands of ravers in a park, a big stage, DJ school for kids, oh and a sauna and a hot tub. What is this madness? This is Strøm. Strøm (Danish for power and current) festival is Scandinavia’s premier electronic music festival and features a wide and innovative selection of events, workshops and raves held all over Copenhagen. There is no festival like Strøm, it is a pleasure shooting for them and the events are often original. I shot for them in 2012, and in 2013 Charlene and I had an amazing week covering up to 4 events a day…..
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As I’ve mentioned in the past, the X100S is the camera I turn to whenever I want to keep things simple. Without having to worry about zooming or changing lenses, I’m left to focus on creating images. By concentrating on what I see in the viewfinder, I find that I’m not only more creative with my compositions, but more able to find a narrative in the images I bring home. Here is a series of images from my latest exercise in simplicity…..
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Finally I got time to put together a small set of B&W still life images inspired by a visit to friend’s rustic cottage and taken with my favourite camera and legacy lens: Enjoy! All images : Fuji X-Pro1+MC ROKKOR-PG 58/1.2+Iridient Developer+NIK Silver Efex Pro …..
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I’ll obviously have much more in the weeks to come but I thought I’d post these as an introduction. Yes, the viewfinder is something to behold… More to come.
Shot with the X-T1 and Fujinon XF 18-55mm F2.8-4 R LM OIS
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Over the weekend, my friend Haru came over from Westchester to help me out. As some of you know, Bob at Bergen County Camera was nice enough to lend me a Leica 75 Summarit, and I wanted to test it out on a person. Luckily I have a very patient and understanding friend. So far, the lens is fantastic. Best of all, it’s not much bigger than a 50mm lens. I’m writing up a review on it using my M 240 but I will also be writing up my experience with it on my X-E2. The lens actually works superbly on Fuji, and since the lens isn’t that heavy, it still feels very balance on the X-E2. I had some time left over, and I thought I would take out my Zeiss Touit 12mm F2.8. I thought the 18mm equivalent of the Zeiss would offer a unique perspective, and more importantly, we had a blast with it. Plus, we were in very tight quarters, so a wide angle definitely came in handy. If you’re a frequent visitor to my blog, you probably already know that this is one of my favorite lenses for the Fuji X Series system. Other than it being big (especially with the hood), it’s a pretty handy lens, and excellent optically. When I bought it, I didn’t know I was going to use it so much but it turns out that this is one of my most used lenses. In fact, a lot of times, this is the only lens that I carry with me………
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It’s been raining non-stop for more than a week. You were hoping for a sunny weekend to go out and take some colourful landscapes, but you are now torn between curling up by the fire or wrapping yourself up in the warmth of the bed covers. You are thinking that there isn’t any light worth chasing. It’s grey, it’s cloudy, and it’s miserable. Yet, can you really be so sure that there is nothing out there worth shooting? It might sound odd to you but I’ve never minded the rain. I’ve always liked the sound of it, always appreciated rain sequences in films and always looked with curiosity at photographs that feature it. I think that rain or very cloudy days (if we want to talk about light) is always the ideal time for a training session. The reason is simple: you have to force your eye to look for less obvious things. You train yourself to look for details. You avoid classic wide-angle scenes that might have looked interesting bathed in an interesting light, but are clearly banal without……
A foggy and snowy day spent with my homies shredding together and snapping a couple pictures along the way with my pocket camera. Once again the Fuji X-E1 and XF 23mm f/1.4R proved to be a great combo despite the dumping snow and cold conditions. Check the whole series here……
See on www.francoismarclay.com
Fujifilm Fujinon XF 23mm F1.4
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