February 10, 2015

Why the Fujifilm X100 T?

First and foremost—quality of the images coming from the Fujifilm X100 T is outstanding.  They are sharp and crisp and have little noise.  The color rendering is outstanding and the gradation from highlights to shadows to blacks is smooth. I believe all of this is due to the quality of the lens, sensor and the lack of low-pass filter.  The dynamic range of the sensor is more than adequate for most shooting.
The image below was shot in JPEG using the camera settings for Velvia, which is considered to be rich, bold and colors with high contrast.  I often shot Velvia film when shooting landscapes.
As I looked at the scene in the image below, I thought that it had very interesting contrast—the reflection of the buildings in the glass looked like a 4K image shown on a very high definition television and the muted colors of the pillars, plants and sidewalk as presented on a print on watercolor paper.
I think that the camera handled both extremely well.  

Camera settings:  Fujifilm X100 T, ISO 1250, f/8 at 1/400th of a second, JPEG shot with Velvia film profile.
Post Processing:
Lightroom 5—lightened shadow area.

January 29, 2015

Why I Got the Fujifilm X100 T

No, I am not giving up shooting with my Nikons.

Why did I get the Fujifilm X100 T? 

I have been interested in the newer mirrorless cameras from some time.  Then why recouping from my knee replacement, one of my friends went out with me to do a little street photography—probably my favorite form of photography.  I was armed with my normal equipment—Nikon D4 with Nikon 28-300mm lens attached.  Within a few blocks, I was feeling a little discomfort because of the weight.  At this point, he handed me his Leica M240 with a 50mm f/2 lens attached.  I immediately had more bounce in my step.  I fought with the manual focusing the rest of the day, but did enjoy the more relaxed pace of the shooting with the Leica, and of course, the reduced weight of the equipment.

Although I thoroughly enjoyed shooting with the Leica M240, I was not and am not prepared to drop $10,050 (body $7,950 and lens $2,100) to duplicate this experience.  I started doing some research and soon discovered that the Fujifilm X100 (which is a autofocus, fixed lens camera) is a reasonable substitute for the Leica.

The picture below was taken with Fujifilm X100 T in downtown Houston.  It is a JPEG image that was shot in black and white.  I really liked the crispness and sharpness of the image.  Reminds me of my film shooting days.

Camera settings:  Fujifilm X100 T, ISO 200, f/2 at 1/1000th of a second.
Post Processing:
Lightroom 5—added contrast and clarity and cropped image to 4:5 ratio.

January 13, 2015

Looking Back to 2014 and Forward to 2015

Like a bad penny, I am back!

2014 was a year in which I started to do bigger and more complex commercial photographic work.  It was fun, but most time-consuming.  The year ended with me devoting almost all of time to rehabbing my knee from a total knee replacement.

Guess what I got for Christmas?

Yep, you guessed it.  I got a Fujifilm X100 t. 

In the coming weeks, I hope to give you some idea as to what it is like to shoot with this camera and the adjustment from my Nikon D4 and D800.

Hope you enjoy the posts on the Fujifilm X100 t.

Camera settings:  Nikon D800, 50mm f/1.8 lens, ISO 200, f/4 at 1/125th of a second with Nikon SB800 snooted and pointed at camera.
Post Processing:
Lightroom 5—applied Nikon standard preset, set white and black points.

January 22, 2014

Cate—No. 3

Today’s photo uses the same lighting and camera settings as the one last week.
In this photo, I wanted to bring –out the green in Cate’s eyes so I had her change into a green blouse and very bright red lipstick.  The complementary colors work well and get the job done. 
Camera settings:  Nikon D800, 50mm f/1.8 lens, ISO 200, f/6.7 at 1/125th of a second. 
Post Processing: 
Lightroom 5—applied Nikon portrait preset, set white and black points.

January 15, 2014

Cate—No. 2


First, let’s get the technical stuff out of the way.  The background was simply a sheet on the wall and was lighted with two Elinchrom Quadra set at f/11 (about 1½ stops over the setting for Cate).  Cate was lighted with a single Elinchrom Quadra shot through a white umbrella at about eye level and to her left—I wanted a slight shadow on the right side of her face.   I used my Nikon D800 and 50mm f/1.8 lens at f/6.7.  The Nikon 50mm f/1.8 is especially sharp at f/5.6 through f/13; this f-stop also makes sure that when I focus on her eye, her entire face will be in focus. 
To me, Cate’s best features are her eyes and her mouth—and that is what I tried to emphasize in the photo.  I wanted this image to be straight-on to show off those features. 
Camera settings:  Nikon D800, 50mm f/1.8 lens, ISO 200, f/6.7 at 1/125th of a second. 
Post Processing: 
Lightroom 5—applied Nikon portrait preset, set white and black points, added vibrance.