Today was a bit rainy, but I decided to not let that stop me. So my friend and I headed to the Ecotarium in Worcester. I've been there a few times so I knew there were some nice exhibits indoors as well. I headed there equipped with my X-T1 and 60mm macro. This is the slowest lens to focus in the Fuji line-up, but I was curious to see how the new X-T1 would handle it.
I must say I was very pleased. It did hunt from time to time, but it was not as hesitant as I was used to. Actually I even bumped into my cousin and daughter there. Its super family friendly place and I can't think of many other places in Worcester that fun to go to on a rainy day.
This is a Red Fronted Macaw. He was very friendly and kept walking around.
This little guy was just hanging out on a stick.
This guy looks awesome, but I'm glad there is glass between us.
I was lucky enough to be there when they did a presentation/introduction of this little guy.
Ha. He looks like he's ready to go for a stroll.
And of course I had to look around for some details. There really is a lot to see at the Ecotarium. So wandering around I saw some interesting things. There are lots of educational stations as well as interactive stations to learn hands on. Often you will find dozes of children walking around having a blast. So of course I didn't want to interfere with their fun. But I did find some details to capture. Here are a few.
This goes to show that you can hand me a camera and a macro lens and I'll be happy for hours. I'm really happy with these results and am very pleased with the Fuji system. Today was a shorter visit to the Ecotarium, but I will be back as there is so much more to see.
If you know me personally you'll probably agree that I love food. I enjoy all kinds of cuisines and I don't shy away from visiting new places. Also, you probably already know about my passion for photography. So in those occasions that I can blend the two I'm quite happy.
One of my goals for the future is to do more food photography for me as well as for clients. I've always been very big on details, but also making things look good.
Today I had the opportunity of visiting The Loving Hut in Worcester. This is a Vegan restaurant. I've lived here over a decade and have never been there. Fantastic food, very tasty and well priced as well. But, I could not control myself in taking a few photos.
Please note that I did move things around a little, but this was all taken with available light and just for fun to see how my camera would do.
I'm going to make it a point of photographing more food on my photo walks. I love food!
Earlier today I decided to head out with the new X-T1 and walk around a little. I'd only used it about the house previously and although it seemed nice I knew it wasn't the best way to break it in.
So I headed to West Boylston to the Old Stone Church. I've gone there several times before so I know what to expect. I really couldn't have asked for a better day. It was warm, but not too hot out and there were only a few clouds here and there. So I walked around the Church and tried to get a few different angles.
Things I noticed:
- The viewfinder is huge and very easy to see even in bright sunlight!
- I used the tilting screen a couple times to shoot from the waist. For this location I didn't really use it much, but for some street photography I can already see how well that will work.
- The exposure compensation dial is really nice to use. I am always checking and adjusting it so its important that its easy to grip. Its designed much better than on the X-E2.
- The directional pad on the back, as many have already commented online, is very fiddly. I prefer the X-E2 design.
- I really like the grip on the camera. Although its almost the same size to the X-E2 it feels larger because of the grip. This in turn gives it a more premium feel if that makes sense.
- I like how the information rotates in the viewfinder when you rotate the camera to portrait view.
Overall I really like this camera and it truly feels like the X-E2's bigger brother.
These two photos are taken from the Rt 110 overpass of the Wachusett Reservoir.
You then walk up a little further and then turn to the left to find the path entrance to get to the Church. This sign is at the entrance.
As you walk down the path you see the Church ahead of you.
I headed over to the bushes to the left to get this angle.
As you walk closer to the Church you see this nice tree to your right.
This informative guide is located near the entrance to the Church.
Once inside you see that it is basically all walls and ceiling with the middle area covered with sand.
I just really like the textures and lines found in the Church.
Next I went back outside to go around the building.
Behind me is the Reservoir. In this photo I'm about a ft from the water.
Behind the Church this is what you see when you look across the way.
On the other side of the Church you see this large flag. If you look back to the first two photos you'll see this flag which nearly covers the whole side of the building.
I took more photos of course, but these give you a good idea of this landmark. So after some more photos I started making my way back up the path. To the right of the path you see another set of pretty trees.
I was/am very pleased with the handling of the X-T1. Pretty much everything feels right, in the right places and the viewfinder is just a treat. I'm thinking of heading out to a new spot this Thursday so check back to see where I end up.
I give the X-T1 a big thumbs up!!
Yesterday I got in my Fujifilm X-T1. If you recall from a previous post I had tried it out, but ended up returning it as my budget would not allow it. I had and still have my X-E2 which I am really enjoying. Given the newest firmware update the X-E2 is coming closer and closer to the X-T1 in performance. So why did I pick up the X-T1?
Since having the X-T1 my business has improved and I can now afford the X-T1. With more work comes more use and that is where I found the X-T1 would be a great investment. It offers a few key benefits to the X-E2.
- Weather sealed body: I don't often find myself in inclement weather, but with weddings you never know what you'll be faced with so its good to be well prepared and not have to worry too much about your gear.
- Large EVF. I had seen it before and it was very nice to use, but wasn't sure at the time if it was worth it. Having shot events recently without this sized screen I can see just how beneficial this is.
- Tilting LCD screen. When I was trying it out last time this was not something I really cared about at all. Since then I've been doing photo walks everywhere and there have been times I wish I could put the camera over my head or to "shoot from the hip". I know that I'll be using this LCD more often.
- It uses the same batteries. I already knew this, but whenever you upgrade a camera its always good to check. Luckily I already have some spares.
- More controls on the camera exterior. It looks like Fuji has listened to its customers and placed more options and settings on the camera body itself to minimize the need to dive into the menus. Not that I went in there often, but over time I'm sure this will become extremely convenient.
I'm really excited to use this camera and make full use of it. Not worrying about whether I can or can't afford it is awesome, but purchasing a top of the line product is even more rewarding. With some use I'll decide if I'll get a second one as I use my cameras in tandem for weddings and events.
Please enjoy a few photos of the new X-T1!
This camera is the big brother to the X-E2. It has a larger grip and the traditional viewfinder hump as well. It looks a tad large until you see the large viewfinder housed within. I prefer the rangefinder styling of the X-E2, but to be honest these are both very different cameras.
One of the major additions to the X-T1 to the X-E2 is the dedicated ISO dial on the top left. On the X-E2 you could access it via a menu using one of the function buttons. Although I tend to stay on the auto ISO settings I can see that studio work and other situations how convenient it is to have the dial right on top.
This is a view from behind the camera. You can see the ISO dial and the different shooting modes underneath as well. One less thing to go menu diving for. Nice!
As you move to the right you have the large viewfinder and the tillable LCD screen below.
To the right you'll see the other dials. These are in similar positions to where they are in the X-E2. You have the large shutter dial, the on off switch and the exposure compensation dial. I really like that dial on the X-T1 as its raised and very easy to grip. For my style of shooting I am constantly adjusting that dial so making it easier to grip is phenomenal. You can also see one of the function buttons there that you can customize. And you have the video record button as well, which I believe you can customize as well.
This is a different angle so you can the backside of the camera.
I'm really excited to use this camera more. I put a few lenses on it already and that viewfinder is just awesome. Also, I felt like some of the lenses focused faster as well.
I'm sure to post more about the X-T1 as I get bonded to it.
If you are looking for the full package in a mirrorless body this one is high on the list. It has been winning awards and causing many photographers to dump their gear and start looking at Fuji.
Good job Fuji!
Fujifilm continues to impress me. I've only been using their gear for a few months, but they continue to improve and enhance their systems. I was impressed with the X-E1, but more so by the X-E2 and feel like I made a fantastic choice. Its quick, takes great photos and really makes me want to go out and shoot more.
So of course I've been out and about on a variety of photo walks taking photos and having fun. Then, a couple days ago Kevin Mullins, one of my favorite Fuji photographers, posts that the newest firmware update for the X-E2 is finally here.
I'd heard rumors of some of the things they were going to introduce (which is why I held off of getting the X-T1) and went immediately to his post to find out more.
Some of the improvements:
- The big one for me is an improved Electronic Viewfinder. The refresh rate of the X-E2 viewfinder was improved to match the quickness of the X-T1 viewfinder. Even more impressive it keeps this high refresh rate in low light! On all previous models the refresh rate would slow down to almost half the speed in low light and took some getting used to. Not anymore. Hurray for Fujifilm
- The view mode is re-introduced. A lot of people were really bugged by the view mode being removed from the X-E2. It bugged me at first, but I enjoy reviewing quickly in the viewfinder. I only really noticed it when I wanted to show someone a photo I had taken. The average person finds it strange reviewing a photo in the viewfinder. But, now they don't have to.
- Focus peeking highlights color option. This is something I haven't really used much, but the standard color is white. In very bright scenes or low contrast scenes the white is hard to see. They have now added red and blue which is really helpful in those situations.
These are the major improvements, but all are significant. So if you have the X-E2 I highly recommend updating your firmware. You can download it here.
No its not dejavu, but I did own an X100s temporarily about a month ago. I tried it out and enjoyed it, but I was hesitant about the lens focal length. As the lens is fixed I really have no option and that worried me at the time. But, now that I have my two "for work" cameras I feel really good about getting to know the X100s better and I know it will serve quite useful during wedding ceremonies as well as times where I need to be discrete.
Reasons why I know I'm going to really enjoy this camera:
- The built in lens is very small which adds to the discreteness when out shooting. It also keeps the camera very light.
- The silent shutter. From more than three feet away you can't hear it. No joke.
- At times I will need this wider field of view and this is a very sharp lens.
- The close up capability of this camera/lens combination is really good. To the point where I can do semi closeups of things without any problems.
- It has an optical and electronic viewfinder. Although I use the electronic viewfinder primarily I can see how street photographer and landscapes could benefit from the optical view.
- This will become my primary photo walk camera for street, landscape and city photography.
- A very easy pick up and go type camera. No fumbling around trying to decide what lens to use.
Please enjoy a few photos of my new black X100s. I highly recommend this camera as a companion camera to your current system, or a do-it-all travel camera, or the perfect street photography camera. If you have a chance rent or try one out. You will be very pleased!
The Fuji 60mm lens is one of the three original lenses to come out for Fuji. The lens line-up began with the 18mm 2.0, 35mm 1.4 and the 60mm 2.4 macro. This gave us photographers a wide lens, a normal lens and a portrait/macro lens.
I must admit that my first lens purchase was the 35mm 1.4 lens as it is a great focal length, but was priced really well for being a 1.4 lens. Previously, with Nikon, a comparable lens was over $1,000 which meant I had to be super sure I'd make good use out of it. I did own the 1.8 version and was very happy with it, but being able to afford a 1.4 lens meant I could use it in lower light and hopefully a sharp piece of equipment. I was not disappointed. At the time of purchase I already had the standard zoom lens 18-55mm 2.8-4, which I was also very happy with.
My next purchase was the 60mm lens. My style of photography is very candid and I also enjoy doing some macro work. I had read a lot online that the 60mm was not a true 1 to 1 macro as my previous macro lenses, but without trying it out I wasn't quite sure what that meant. So, I purchased it and knew that it wouldn't focus as closely as I was used to, but I felt I'd be ok with that.
First Impressions (recap):
- Given that its longer than the 35mm it was still very light weight and of good build quality.
- The hood that comes with it is a tad long as it almost doubles the length of the lens, but I like my lenses to be protected.
- The AF is clearly slower than all the other Fuji lenses I owned at the time and it was discouraging at first.
- It was very well balanced on my X-E2 and very easy to carry.
- The macro abilities were very good. I could get as close as I wanted to without wishing I could get closer. I shoot all my macro work without tripod and almost never shoot at full macro as it is very hard to keep the camera steady. So, I was quite pleased.
- The manual focusing took a little getting used to as I had to turn the focus ring much more than I have had in the past, but it only takes a little practice to get used to.
- THE LENS IS SHARP! Of course most of us look for this aspect immediately and I never had to question the optical performance of this lens. Colors look contrasty and it is sharp even at F2.4.
Now, by the time of my purchases there were other lenses in the Fuji line-up as well. One lens was about to be released that had me very curious. The Fuji 56mm 1.2! Now, if you are a gear head just hearing the word 1.2 makes you do a double take. Like, where, what, how much?! 1.2 lenses are generally pretty rare as they tend to be large, specialty lenses and really expensive. In this case the 56mm lens was twice as expensive as the 60mm lens, was a 1.2 (means its better in low light) and was supposed to have very fast AF. But, the focal lengths were just so similar.
Like many of you it was time to decide whether to keep my macro lens, which I loved, or to sell my 60mm lens to be able to purchase the 56mm lens. On paper the 56mm lens looked like the perfect portrait and wedding lens for me. But, I also loved doing macro work for personal work and for detail photos.
Fast forward a little and I did end up picking up the 56mm lens and I absolutely love it! But, I also decided to keep my 60mm lens. You can't fake a macro lens. Sure you can buy extension tubes and adapters, but having a dedicated macro lens is just a must, for me. I have learned to live with the slightly slower AF speed of the 60mm, but I know sharpness and close up photos are so my style that I had to keep them both. Each is used for different situations, but my 60mm has a permanent place in my kit.
So if you are deciding whether to purchase one or the other, or if you should replace your 60mm lens with the new 56mm figure out what's important to you. For some macro work isn't important and bought the 60mm because it was the longest lens initially offered. Not to worry there are many eager photographers willing to take it off your hands. But for some, like myself, it makes a lot of sense to own both.
Please enjoy a few photos I took using the 60mm lens.
Please note that this cup is about 3 1/2 inches tall. And this next photos shows you the close-up capabilities of the lens.
These are some small plant branches.
This is another macro shot which shows you shallow the depth of field can get when you are that close to your subject.
Thanks for visiting. Please let me know about your experience with your 60mm lens in the comments section.
I noticed recently that most of my blog posts are associated in one way or another to my new Fuji gear. It has been really exciting migrating from a DSLR system to a mirrorless system. I'm really enjoying the smaller footprint, fantastic image quality and renewed inspiration to want to head out and photograph everything.
Also, I acknowledge the fact that a lot of my readers are potential clients as well as a whole other viewer base which are photographers. So, I decided to start this separate blog to focus on all things Fuji related.
I'm excited to be along for the ride and hope to share information about some of the gear, some outings, examples and general topics surrounding the new Fuji gear.
Please feel free to follow and to comment.