Photography

Cards from Richard

Few days ago I got these beautiful cards from my Flickr contact and friend, Richard Wanderman. Oh boy it was nice to see Richard’s fantastic photos in a printed form. He is a brilliant photographer and he prints his captures a lot by himself. He has provided so much wise advice to me about photography during these many years we have known each other through Flickr. It is funny but you can call some people your friends even if you haven’t seen them in person. Richard is one of those people in my book.

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Tulips in B&W

I really love how these tulips look like in B&W. And high-contrast B&W is even better. Beautiful metallic shine combined with a coarse looks makes it. Why to always shoot flowers in colors?

Beautiful tulips

Fuji X100M

No. I do not have any insider information about next X100 series camera.

But I named my Fuji X100 as X100M. X100 Monochrom (sorry, Leica…). Well, obviously it is not only a name that changed but I put it to shoot B&W JPEGs. I deserve a special B&W camera. And X100 is perfect for that. I have special relationship with this camera, so, it suits well for a special task. X100 is also quite slow camera to work with. This is actually good for my monochrome work. Better not to have all fancy bells and whistles.

I use the following B&W settings:

  • Film simulation: Monochrome + red filter
  • Sharpness: M-Hard
  • Highlight tone: M-Hard
  • Shadow tone: Hard
  • Noise reduction: M-Low

Those settings combined with the use of exposure compensation provide results I like. I may even attach again my TCL-X100 tele converter to test it with my new X100M. 🙂

May the Force be with me.

May the Force be with you

I detached the tele converter

Today I decided to detach the TCL-X100 tele converter from my Fuji X100. Why so? I purchased it to get a 50 mm focal length to make the X100 better portrait camera and to get that FoV in general. The tele converter was working very nicely in outdoor use but I was not so happy with it indoors in poor lighting conditions. My intention was to use my Ricoh GR (28 mm equivalent) with my Fuji X100 with the tele converter (50 mm equivalent) to get two-camera combo which is small in size. Actually the X100 is not any small camera when the TCL-X100 is attached to it. That combination is almost same size (and actually heavier) than my Fuji X-Pro1 with XF 35/1.4 lens attached. And of course the XF 35/1.4 lens is much better than the tele converter. Sharper and faster. So, if I want a 28/50 mm combo the best option would be the GR with X-Pro1.

Actually I have used my Fuji X100 a lot as a portrait camera with its standard 35 mm equivalent lens. And I have been pleased for the results every time. Actually I like more ”environmental” portraits with some visible background. Here are some examples of that kind of portraits shot with X100 in its standard configuration:

Jenni at the Old Town walls

 

Puddle love

Tiitus at the beach

Up and happy

 

Relaxing

Happy pilot

I am so tall!

How about 5 megapixels and through a window?

Well, it seems to work out very nicely. At least if you have a Leica Digilux 2 with its brilliant Vario-Summicron lens. I think the details are incredible for a such low resolution camera. It surely was a magical moment to see the shot below on a computer screen. I actually have thought about to get another Leica someday. Maybe M8. I know it has its quirks but I think it would be fantastic B&W camera with some nice Leica lens. But we’ll see. As usually.

 A view through our library room  window

So nice to have a decent mobile phone camera

I am so happy that my iPhone 6 has a good camera. It was an extremely nice day today and I was able to get few nice shots of trees covered in frost. I absolutely prefer ”real” cameras but my phone is always with me. iPhone 6 is a very capable device to shoot at least in good light.

Trees at University

Trees at Tiitus' pre-school

Fuji TCL-X100 tele converter indoors

In an earlier post I wrote that I like the TCL-X100 in outdoor shooting. And that is very true. Indoors the situation is little bit different. Or at least I have somehow mixed feelings.

50 mm focal length is very nice for portraits indoors. Much better than the 35 mm equivalent lens which X100 series cameras have. What is also very nice is that the tele converter does not have any effect on the widest aperture which remain to be f/2. This really sounds nice but what I have noticed so far the f/2 – 2.8 area will not provide tack sharp shots. Of course this will be the situation also with the X100’s lens anyways, so maybe the tele converter does not make the situation worse.

From f/2.8 the sharpness is acceptable but of course I would have liked to use wider apertures in indoor shooting because of the challenging lighting conditions. Because X100 does not have any image stabilization I have to keep the shutter speed at least in 1/50 s range, preferably faster to provide sharp captures. This will of course mean that ISO will go up. With the X100 ISO 1600 is still acceptable in color captures and ISO 3200 with B&Ws. And if I have to use apertures between 2.8 and 4 the ISO will be almost every time between 1600 and 3200.

All in all, I like the TCL-100 in indoors shooting when taking B&W captures. In monochromes some noise is even beneficial but in color shots noise may make the colors look like little bit mushy.

Kaapo and Tommi

1/40, f/2.8, ISO 3200

I looked up

Sometimes it is good to twist you head upwards when photographing in the nature. I was strolling around in a very cold weather and saw how beautifully the sun rays touched the pine tops. I took my Ricoh GR out of the winter jacket’s pocket and was ready to shoot.

Pines were beautiful

1/200, f/8, ISO 400