Well its been a long while since my last post, about seven months. Since then a bunch has happened Iv bought a new camera (5dmkii) new backpack (lowepro flipside 400aw) new tripod (manfrotto 190xprob & manfrotto 460mg magnesium head) and quite a few accessories. Iv also been lucky enough to borrow and try out some great lenses that I cant at the moment afford ( 24-105 F4L , 70-200 F4L , and a 400 F5.6L ). Over the months iv been taking a ton of photos some good... quite a few not so good, but learning and growing with every shutter actuation. Well thats all for now... more updates to come.
The Fujifilm Finepix X100 was the second "non" point-and-shoot camera that I have owned. My first real camera was the Canon T3i DSLR and I loved that camera because of its versatility and performance. Shooting with a DSLR caused me to stumble upon a fact about photography that I had never known before, people notice a big camera with a big lens pointed at them and don't like it! Who would have guessed? Well, living in a country like Kuwait most likely doesn't help as most people don't like camera's in general pointed at them.
As I started to like photography more, I went out to shoot more often. Of course, the more I went out the greater the chance of running into people who didn't like or understand photography; so I was kicked out of a few places and began to get discouraged. During many youtube and web browsing sessions I started to piece together bits of information and tips. One of the things I had realized was the way some photographers get around attracting too much attention when shooting in the streets, they change their camera! Sure, shooting an event or doing studio work is a great place for a DSLR, but street photography and well, any photography here in Kuwait calls for something else; Something discreet. Thus, after more youtube and web sessions I decided on the Fujifilm X100 as my small, light, discreet, street shooter!
When one sees me shoot with my X100, I imagine they think I'm just a hobbyist photographer who is shooting on a old film rangefinder. That can be non threatening to some people compared to the pro-looking DSLR. My first real world experiences with the X100 were while I was on vacation back in California. I shot at my sister's wedding, around some wildlife areas, and indoors. I knew all the specs about the camera and how the large APS-C sensor combined with the fast f2.0 Fujinon lens was a winning combination, though my results didn't excite me. I had more blurry and out of focus shots then I had liked and I felt that even at f2.0, the low light capabilities were not all that great. At f2.0 I would have to set the shutter so slow that it was causing blurry photos due to camera shake. All of those things made shooting on the X100 no fun for me and I took other camera's out with me in its place.
It was not until my new found enjoyment of shooting on real film rangefinder's that I came to understand the unique qualities (and limitations) that make the X100 something to appreciate. Yes, I admit I knew it had limitations before I bought it but I didn't really understand them or know how to deal with them. Combining my use of all manual SLR's and rangefinder's I had become more comfortable with setting the shutter, aperture, and then focusing all at a faster rate of speed, which is needed when walking the streets. Also, my fear of turning the ISO up had started to diminish and I was able to keep a fast enough shutter to not blur my shots!
This new found confidence and understanding of the X100 and the camera's it has taken its traits from, has lead me to once again take the X100 out as a primary street shooting tool. Just as you may have guessed, I loved it. Below are some photos I took that night with the X100, only doing some slight tweaks to the RAW files like brightening up a little (one photo) and converting to JPEG.
Below: American sized mannequin! LOL
The other photos are posted in my personal photos page Cody's Photos/Street Photography - Kuwait. Feel free to check them out!
John and I went to Fahaheel the other night so he could test out his new camera. He bought a Sony Nex7 and had his 50mm f1.8 lens mounted. Since we were doing some street photography, I took my Nikon FM10 with a 50mm f1.4 and my Canon G1 X just for fun. We had a lot of crazy looks from the Kuwaiti folks but everyone else didn't seem to mind us cramming camera's into their faces.
More photo's in my Kuwait street photography page.