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Well my friends I went and done it! Some of you guys who have been here a while may recall my daughter "borrowed" my X-T1 and my "don't leave home without it lens" the Fuji 18-55. For the last several months I've been photographing using my primes only -- the fabulous 16 f1.4, the 23 1.4, 35 1.4, and 60 2.4 plus the 55-200 zoom. And I loved doing that. I've truly enjoyed making images as I have to be slower, and more thoughtful in the process plus, let's face reality, the primes will always beat a zoom with regards to sharpness, and micro-contrast among other things. However, the 18-55 is a lens I cannot live without! I love it. There I said it. If I loved it any more I'd have to name it and provide it it's own ss number for tax purposes. I do plan on continuing to use primes for most of my images as I really enjoyed using them and have weened myself off the zoom, but I will feel much better knowing my 18-55 is back in my bag just in case I need it! To be completely honest: I looked at the 16-55 2.8. Many of you who "know me" know that I've said I would never purchase this lens, and it's brother the 50-140 2.8 due to 1) the weight and 2) price. I looked at the 16-55 2.8, i thought about it, but I just couldn't bring myself to purchase this heavy, and expensive lens when for a quarter of the price my 18-55 works wonders, is super tack sharp, and has provided me with YEARS of use -- my original 18-55 was the kit lens that came on my Fuji X-E1 I purchased back in February 2013! This image below is one of over 16,000 images I have taken in various locations ranging from Key West, to Prince Edward Island in Northern Canada between mid-July, and early November. I believe I "lost" the 18-55 to my daughter when I returned from the Keys and was prepping to head north -- this image was in fact taken with the 18-55 lens. So, I'm now whole again and I couldn't be happier knowing it's there in case I need it. PS: Here in the Classifieds I'm offering for sale my Zeiss/Touit 12mm F2.8 lens. Check it out if you are in the market for a wide-angle for your Fuji!
Hey everybody! Today, I’d like to share a brief story about a photograph I took two days ago, the joy of having a small, lightweight but high-quality camera equipment and knowing how to use your (limited) resources. It's the same that I already published on my blog. The story started a few days ago when I walked past this spot: It’s the Marienberg Fortress in my current home town, Wuerzburg. I hadn’t realized how good this spot was before, but as you can see, the time of the day and the weather conditions were not too great. So I just kept it in mind. I’m currently pretty damn busy at work, so I don’t really have time to go out and shoot, let alone actually PLAN anything. Nevertheless, I take my “go-to” equipment with me every day, which comprises of: The Fujifilm X100T A Haida 49mm ND 3.0 filter A tiny table tripod (Cullman 50007 digipod short) A cable release I’ve got no dedicated bag for this. I sometimes use a ThinkTank Retro 5, but normally I throw it into whichever bag I have with me (keeping everything organized with the power of the almighty zip-lock-bag… which also serves as a nice protection in case it rains). The whole thing weighs less than your average DSLR body, gives me full control over all relevant settings and yields images of great quality… moreover, I actually TAKE it with me. Anyway, back to yesterday: So I sat in the office, prepared a talk I will give next week and saw that the weather was behaving more or less in the same chaotic way as the days before – promising some nice clouds at sunset. So I just grabbed my bag, rushed out to the spot and set everything up, which more or less looked like that: The combination of the built-in ND filter, my screw-in filter and the great image quality at several apertures and most ISOs allows for a decent amount of freedom in exposure time, so I chose something one-minute-ish (although in the end I chose a 30s picture as the “keeper” thanks to a boat driving through) to nicely blur out the water but keep the clouds visible (they moved in the wrong direction for nice cloud-trails). Of course the whole thing wasn’t too stable on the tiny tripod and the surprisingly shaky bridge, but it sufficed to get a sharp picture. Thanks to the built-in WiFi, doing a rough edit on my smartphone was a breeze. So there you go: The point here is: It’s not about the equipment you have with you – it’s about knowing what you want, what you need, how to get it out of the things you have with you and how to work around the limitations. Whatever this means for you depends tremendously on your style of shooting, your own expectations and which compromises you’re willing to make. And you will have to make them. But this is something that you have to figure out for yourself, so don’t believe anybody who tells you about “that prefect camera” or whatnot. However, for ME, my current “small” setup is pretty close in terms of a daily companion and a whole lot of fun! To conclude, here’s the final Lightroom edit and another one I took later in a moody b&w edit: