A few captures from the still fairly new season. Bit of a change so far this season as I'm using only an 85mm, which is nowhere near long enough for soccer. Waiting on an updated 70-300mm from Nikon which I'm hearing is due soon. The D500 is another interesting option for the future as well. High ISO ability of the new camera looks amazing for a APS-C sensor!
There's something interesting about being a photographer on vacation. Inevitably, you want gear with you but you don't want, or need, for it to be your 'focus' at all during vacation. I tend to keep the gear to a minimum and keep it on my shoulder for fun moments as they come up. All natural light and take things as they come. Also, there is the post processing that comes after you return. With my current gear (Fuji) there's a real alternative here: In camera processed Jpg. I ended up shooting RAW... and I'll explain why.
First, a bit on what gear I decided to bring along. I chose the X-T10 camera as it's smaller and 90% as capable as the X-T1; Easy decision. Also, it has a threaded shutter release which can come in handy for fireworks. The lens options were where I had to take a bit to ponder the pluses and minuses. Ultimately, I decided to go 16mm (24mm), 35mm (50mm) and the 56mm (85mm). I did miss the reach of the 50-140mm but there was no way I was toting that around the entire vacation. If I owned the 23mm 1.4 (35mm) I might have just taken that and the 56mm but I haven't picked that up yet. I'm glad that I chose to take the 16mm however.
So, why not save space and processing time with using jpg? I wrote earlier on not making the photography the focus and when you are just capturing moments as they come you won't always have the best light or angles. Inevitably, the extra latitude in post becomes essential.
We had an amazing time. This trip was a long time coming and it was worth it! We filled every day with a new adventure and came back happy and exhausted :)
Had a portrait shoot in Wildwood, NJ over the weekend. Took my family along and headed out early to enjoy the day. I haven't been there in quite a few years. I might say it is possibly not how I remember it but then again I was 18 when I was last there.
I stuck with one lens for the day (except for the photo shoot). The Fuji 16mm F1.4 is quickly becoming my goto for family adventures. I love how it takes in just a bit more of the scene from the 35mm but also gives some creative DOF capabilities. The focus clutch manual focusing override is drawing me into the 'zone focus' technique as well. All in all, a heck of a lens and a worthy edition to my bag.
Though mostly cloudy and a few drops here and there, it turned out to be a great day. Temps were pretty much perfect with a slight breeze. We decided to head south for some park activities and small town fun.
This isn't the first test as I've had it for a week now but so far this 'baby X-T1' is more pro than it's small size would have you initially believe. The below series was all shot on continuous focus using a combination of single AF point and zone. My kids were NOT still here. Some subtle distance changes and some drastic and fast. Swinging at or away from me erratically. A true test for the new firmware 4.0 (in the case of the X-T10 it's the native firmware). I purposely shot these wide-open at F1.4 and at close distance to keep the DOF fairly narrow.
AF Performance Thoughts
As I mentioned earlier, this wasn't my first test of the X-T10 or the new firmware 4.0 on the X-T1. I have tested with tracking people running at me and away, experimented when to best use zone or single AF with continuous as well as compare with one of the current DSLR AF kings, the Nikon D750.
I'm not going to say the X-T10 or X-T1 can compete on a 1:1 but the beauty is they don't have to. It does take some getting used to to see what trips up this system but once you start getting a hang of it, it's truly impressive.
Wow, what can I say here? The X-T10 in combination with the 35 F1.4 just became my favorite family option. Yes, it's small and of a slightly lesser build... but that comes with some really awesome advantages!
First, the buttons on the camera are quite a bit nicer in use; not as mushy as the X-T1 due to it's weather seals. Next, the smaller size really does help it fade away on your shoulder when not needed. Also of note, your not scaring anyone with this camera (Unless of course you decide to mount the 50-140mm on it... not sure why you would!). You just won't draw DSLR or even bigger mirrorless camera attention.
One of my favorite subjects to shoot. It's such a departure from what I normally do (tripod!) which makes it something I look forward to doing every year. Hoping we don't get rain tonight but luckily there was a great local show yesterday.
Shot with the new Fuji X-T10 camera and 16mm F1.4 lens. I LOVE the threaded release on the X-T10! I'll have more to say on the X-T10, X-T1 and some lenses soon. Also, the new firmware is in and it's pretty much what I was hoping it would be. I'll write more on this soon as well.
Have a fun 4th!
Picked up a couple new fuji gears before the next wedding. Adding to the Fuji system was inevitable after its excellent showing a couple weeks ago. I'm at the stage of trying to balance both systems to take advantage of each's strengths. I initially thought the wider lenses would make more sense on the Nikon but I am now limiting that to the 35mm (workhorse lens). Ultra wide and tele will be handled on the Fuji to take advantage of the lower weight of the extreme focal lengths (and lower cost!).
I debated whether to grab the 14mm F2.8 or the 16. The extra 2mm really does make a significant difference in view. Ultimately, I knew how versatile this 16mm could potentially be. To start with, Fuji's build quality is top notch. Adding in the distance scale and manual focusing clutch really make this lens that much better. Finally, the close focus capability basically turns this lens into a two-in-one (I'll definitely be using this for ring shots!)
The Nissin i40 (Fuji)
I also picked up this great little flash for reception bounce work. I had already had some hands-on at my local shop (great place to cover your gear needs!), so I knew I needed to pick this up. Exceptionally well built and thought out. Super easy to exposure comp and is much more powerful than it looks!
Another school year is ending. It's hard to believe we made it through the winter and there isn't another snow storm looming. What does this summer season have in store for us?
For starters, wedding season #2 is in full swing for Love Ever More. The business is still in the early stages of growth but we will be quite busy between now and the end of the year.
A vacation will cap off the summer! The family will be heading south to Disney World for a week and everyone is counting the days.
I've added a long desired piece of equipment to my bag as well. The Fuji X-T1 will primarily serve as my go-to for portraiture and family / lifestyle shooting. I will definitely be taking it along for weddings as well but I'm uncertain as to what role it will play. So far it is proving capable of just about anything I've tried to throw at it; albeit sans many pro functions. I'll have more to say about the camera and lenses soon.
"He's not really dead. As long as we remember him." Leonard H. "Bones" McCoy