For those of you that don’t know me, I am fortunate enough to be a Fujifilm X-Photographer and have been using the X-Series for almost two years now. However until now I have been using a hybrid set up, where I had a Canon SLR kit to cover what the Fujifilm cameras couldn’t. This sale has been on the cards for about a year; the two things stopping me were 1. access to a good TTL (through the lens metering) flash for event photography and 2. a 70-200mm F2.8 equivalent lens for the Fujifilm X-Series. Now those two boxes have been filled and the Canon kit has been gathering dust for a long time before this.
I’m not going to sit here and write something against the Canon set up I previously used, as it was a wonderful collection of products. However, for my work I found that the +’s for the X-Series heavily outweighed the -’s.
I tried to come up with an analogy to describe the camera options. As I’m often having to travel great distances to obtain the photos I want, I thought shoes would be a good place to start! Big, heavy boots are (medium format cameras) sturdy, will slow you down but are sure to keep your feet comfy. The latest trainers (DSLRs) are designed for speed, these things will get you there quickly and are often made by a branded label to guarantee good quality. They do everything but might stand out in the process. Pumps (Micro 43rds) though super light, maybe lacking in the support required for serious walking. Boutique leather shoes (Leica cameras) are wonderfully crafted and brilliant at what they do, but you wouldn’t dare take them out of their comfort zone.
Then there is the X-Series, to me these are like walking shoes (not boots), light, designed for many purposes and suitable for a wide variety of situations. A bizarre comparison, but in my scrambled mind it makes sense.
The X-Series has rejuvenated my desire to photograph the world around me. My Canon was wonderful at what it did. BUT I found that I was taking it out less and less, usually reserving it for jobs. Cameras like the X100s can be carried around all day easily and with no worry that it is gaining too much attention. This camera alone has captured a high percentage of my favourite photographs over the past two years. That’s because I carry it everywhere, they are my fav shots because if my Canon 5Diii was still my main camera, I wouldn’t have taken those photographs because the camera would have been left at home.
More than that, the Fujifilm products offered me wonderful film simulations, innovative features and clear product development in current (firmware) and future models. I feel that Fujifilm is a brand moving forward and in the right kind of style.
The advantage of being able to fit so much more in a carry on bag allows me to expand my creativity. Being reassured by the presence of more cameras, plus the luxury of being able to carry a set of exquisite prime lenses, as well as the standard zoom range lenses. Their light weight and relatively small size means that I can carry a lighter, smaller load. Perfect for exploring. This is probably the most important factor for me. Thankfully though the smaller size haven’t compromised the image quality to my eyes. I am very happy with the results I am getting from the X-Series.
Some of you may think I’m mad, a wildlife photographer using Fujifilm, it doesn’t weigh up… Well Fujifilm were one of the few cameras companies that ever interacted with me. Their desire to get photographers of all shapes and sizes involved, expressed their desire to develop the X-Series range louder than any promotional words.
Many may say that I have taken a gamble, “jumped ship too soon, they don’t even have a 400mm”…. I am of the firm belief that Fujifilm is in the midst of a photography revolution and that they are at the forefront. To me, mirrorless is the future, the way it has evolved so rapidly over the past three years, it’s fair to say that the foot on the accelerator isn’t coming off anytime soon.
I’m trying to not come across as too much of a fanboy, but probably failing. There are many many wonderful camera systems out there and I am not lording the X-Series as the best of the best (though it is right up there), instead that it is simply my preferred choice at this moment in time. I’ve not used a set up before which adds so much more to my photographic experience. Isn’t that and the quality of the output the two most important factors to consider? Probably in that order too.