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For the next 30 days or so, I am challenging myself to better understand black and white photography. I have always shied away from shooting B&W images on both film and digital unless it was for a client, for a photowalk, or so I could learn sink developing. It was even more rare that I share a B&W image. As this is a giant hole in my photography, I am challenging myself to shoot only B&W the next 30 days with the hopes of being able to visualize a B&W photo before I take it and to learn to appreciate light and shadow in a B&W world.
OK, I know that’s the oddest sounding title for a post, but let me explain. I posted a while back about moving my workflow off my PC and onto my iPad and hinted at some of the tools I have been using in the process. I also just posted about my current use of the Fuji X-Pro2 as another piece of streamlining what I do. So, this post is to discuss bringing it all together with a consistent look and to share some recent shots from Portsmouth!
Released in March of 2016, the Fuji X-Pro2 has been a pretty solid performer for over 3 years now, though I was late to the game with it. I had been watching this series since the release of the X-Pro1 back in 2012, but didn’t pull the trigger until last November when the timing just seemed right. I had sold my Sony A7R II kit in October because I thought I wanted to shoot exclusively film on the Voigtlander and keep the true one camera, one lens philosophy going. I quickly realized I was missing playing with digital.
I know, funny title for a guy that changes gear as often as his underwear. Although I do adore so many cameras, I have realized over the years that my favorite images have almost nothing to do with the gear choice and have more to do with capturing the story in the right light. I’ve shot with $5 cameras, $15,000 cameras, and everything in-between and they have all produced images I am proud of.
Today I’d like to talk a little on my new workflow using the 2018 11” iPad Pro. I’ve migrated from using my desktop and laptops for editing and posting photos to now using just the iPad. I had been hesitant in the past as the previous iPad’s did not feel like a laptop or desktop replacement. Today, Lightroom CC Mobile and the iPad Pro have become what they need to be in order to fully accomplish my workflow on them…
Since early summer, I have been shooting exclusively with the new Voitlander Nokton Aspherical f/1.2 40mm lens on my Voigtlander Bessa R3M. I’ve always been either a 35mm or 50mm man, but have grown to really love this 40mm width over the last 6 or so months…
This month I got a hold of my first roll of slide film. Well, that’s an utter lie. Three years ago someone gave me a roll of E6 120 which I had no idea how to shoot - and ended up doing 10 shots at 3 stops over. Needless to say, I had nothing to show for my effort. E6 hates that. So, I’ll correct my opening statement and say this is my first roll of slide where I knew how to expose it properly.
Finally, I can talk about this. It’s so hard to keep this secret for so many months! Today, Zeiss announced the full frame fixed lens ZX1. Some of you saw me testing a blacked out camera over the summer, and this was it. So I have official hands-on experience with it! I really feel this is a great idea: a minimal design with no SD slots and an internal 512 GB SSD drive.
So, six months into my One Camera, One Lens, One Preset adventure, I am already turning it on its head with a gear change. I really thought I wanted to focus on the digital side, but each time I head out the door, I grab a film camera. I continue to love the experience and results so much more than the digital side. The latest gem has been the 2006 Voigtlander Bessa R3M "250 Jahre" …
Concluding the three part series of my journey through middle earth (read part I and part II here) I take you through an adventure through Cromwell and Dunedin, then up to the north island for Hobbiton, Rotorua (home of Whakarewarewa, the Living Māori Village), and Auckland. I last left you off in Wanaka, as Linda and I were headed to a couple nights in Cromwell on our journey to see Ashley in Dunedin for a week.
This spring, I got my hands on a Fuifilm X-T2 for a week. I did not get a chance to dig too deep, but I did get to see and feel how it handled. It's a very capable APS-C camera sporting the Fujifilm X-Mount which offers a fantastic line-up of glass. I ended doing some compares to my Sony A7R II for another review, but it gave me a good idea of how an APS-C camera goes head to head with a full-frame one.
Continuing from part I (read here if you have not already) of my journey through middle earth, where I left you off on the south coast at the end of my first 10 solo days, part II continues through the next couple weeks where I met up with Linda to continue exploring the south island from Queenstown and Glenorchy to Milford Sound (again) and up to Fox Glacier and Wanaka (again).