Thursday, July 25, 2013

New Shooting "Eye" & Silver Efex Pro

Started looking at the images I am shooting with the new camera. I knew that I would require some adjustment to my shooting "eye" with a fixed lens camera. The new Fuji has a 23mm f2 fixed lens (approximately 35mm in full frame terms) and I have shot with f2.8 zooms for most of my photographic life of over 35 years. The last wide angle zoom I used was of the 12-24mm variety so I had the capability of shooting at the 35mm field of view but I usually went wider to add to the effect. But this lens is forcing me to "see" differently. It is not a better "seeing" just a different "seeing". In some ways, it has been a liberating experience as other photographers have noted but is also frustrating in the early going as I wish I had a wider or longer focal length. But, like I said, it is not better or worse just different and challenging. I think of someone like Henri Cartier-Bresson who used a 50mm almost exclusively and wondered if I could do the same. I still have times that I wish for a little more focal length and am planning on adding a second Fuji body with its 35mm prime lens to give me the approximate 50mm FOV. Since I have been carrying two camera bodies for almost as long as I have owned a SLR or DSLR, I have a love for carrying two bodies with two different focal lengths so I can switch back and forth as I see images. Sometimes it makes me less inconspicuous but that is the price I pay. With each of the Fuji cameras about half the size of my now-sold Nikons and less than half the weight with the Nikon and a wide or telephoto zoom, it is a small price to pay.
I picked this image to show the difference in some of my shooting. If one looks at my website, my shooting style is a little more "fill the frame" with a particular subject or person. This image shows more of the surroundings and was something I usually reserved for my wideangle zoom. As I am adjusting to the fixed focal length, I find myself closing in a little and believe this trend will continue even with the 50mm equivalent. While this camera provides a live view on the LCD which my Nikons did not have, I still prefer to look through a viewfinder as it seems to put me in touch more with the image. This is a simple "life on the banks" type of shot at our local grocery that I have entitled "Boar's Head". I spent some time in Nik's Silver Efex Pro 2 with this image to make the final rendition you see here. It is one piece of software that has really improved and sped up my workflow for black&white images. And, as anyone can tell, I love black&white over color any day of the week!

As always, make a comment!! Let me know what you think! Until next time, keep on shooting.....

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