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1 month, 1 week ago 6
Posted in: Uncategorized

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In the film photography era.  Leica had a wonderful series of lenses for their M series rangefinder cameras, maybe the most loved were the Sumicrons, and they were all equipped with a maximum aperture of f 2.  They were small, very well built and exceedingly sharp!

 

When the X PRO 1 was released many users wished for similiar series of lenses for this marvelous, updated rangefinder styled camera.  It took a while and in the meantime Fuji updated the original X PRO 1 with the much imporved X PRO 2.  Now we have three supurb f 2 lenses that are great focal lengths for the rangefinder type camera.  I’ve now had the chance to use all three and have some editorial comments on each.

 

XF23mm f 2 R WR   The 23mm (35mm full frame equivilent) is the most useful focal length.  The 35mm is a classic lens that can serve many purposes.  It is the perfect lens for travel, envirnonmental portraits, and general street photography. The Fujifilm  f 2 version is a spectaculalry sharp lens and it a joy to use.  For those of us that like to manually focus, the focusing ring, as it is, in all the rest of the Fujicrons, is silky smooth and joy to focus with.  The aperture ring has satisfying solid click stops.

 

 

XF35mm f 2 R WR   The 35mm (53mm full frame equivilent) is the second useful focal length.  The 53mm is what has often been called a normal lens.  I guess all lenses are normal, but that term referred to the normal perspectrive of the human eye, the area of visual concentation.  For that reason teh 50mm equivalent lenses give a very natural appearance to images.  Just as with the 23mm, this lens is super sharp, and the physical properties are the same, first class.  The big bonus for all of these lenses is theri very compact size, once again a perfect fit for the smaller Fujifilm bodies.

 

 

XF50mm f 2 R WR   The 50mm (75mm full frame equivilent) gives the shooter a moderate telephoto.   I would have much preferred a 60mm (90mm equiv. ) or a 70mm (105mm equivilent). Maybe that will come later!?  The 50mm is very useful when you want to move in closer, optically.  The images from this lens are bitingly sharp and once again the lens is such a great size.

 

What’s next:  If Fujifilm is listening, and I hope they are, let’s  complete this series with two more lenses!!??  How about a 16mm f 2  (24mm) and either the 60mm or 70mm.  That would give you 24mm to 90mm/105mm in five fast single focal length lenses.  Both 90mm and 105mm wpould ahve it’s benefitys, I think for the rangefinder X PRO 2, the 90mm might be beste, butr I would be thrilled with either one.

 

Here are a few images from these lenses!

 

KFC VERT

50mm

 

Dixie

50mm

 

ss_bill2

23mm

 

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23mm

 

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35mm

 

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35mm

 

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35mm

 

If you have a Fuji body, especially the X PRO Series, this is a wonderful trio of Fujicrons!!  Life is so simple with small and compact gear like this.

 

Blessings,

 

the pilgrim

1 month, 1 week ago 5
Posted in: Uncategorized

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The joy of Acros on the Fuji X PRO 2

 

 

One of my favorite shooters of all time and fellow Nikon Tech Rep was, and is, Sam Garcia.  Sam has a great eye, impeccable technical skills and  vast knowledge of the photo industry.  When Sam speaks, I listen.  I got this from Sam today and I wanted to share it and make my own additional comments.  Sam’s original post is in blue my comments in red!

 

 

I simply love shooting mirrorless cameras. They’ve made photography a genuine delight again.  Me too!  
For those who have asked, no, I don’t consider using another company’s gear as disloyal to Nikon.   Me either.
When and if they get a professional mirrorless on the market I will be the first to get on board if it measures up to their (currently) significant competition.
 
Nikon’s seeming inability to recognize the sea-change aspect of this technology is especially frustrating since my personal involvement with mirrorless goes back over ten years to the Coolpix cameras. Shooting such ‘pocket’ cameras seriously when most photographers considered them to be essentially toys taught me there was another way.
Nikon assignments allowed me to start shooting–and liking–mirrorless cameras.
The Nikon 1 showed me where might go. (The “1” series should have been APS sized sensor driven, at the least. That it was not doomed it before the first box was opened in the US.  He is one of the best Coolpix shooters you will ever see!!!!
The company should have shot the whole series in the head by year two in the US, and moved along. The series was more successful in other parts of the World. It goes like that sometimes.)
Cell phones showed the industry that customers were willing to accept ‘cameras’ in any number of different enclosures.  So true!
 
Nikon CAN make a competitive answer to both Sony and Fuji. But they got scared, and fear has cost them a good five year lag getting into the game.
Yes, their current models are good and sell well.
But
Eastman Kodak, back in the 90’s: ‘Yeah, yeah, yeah…digital is interesting. But have you looked at the sales numbers?! You know, my friend, we sell one HELL of a lot of film…!
And believe me, that market’s not going anywhere anytime soon.’
 
Just my personal opinion: the failure in the US market of the Nikon 1 system (sales nowhere near what was originally desired) made the company gun-shy about introducing yet again, another system which would require years of support, and an entirely reconfigured lens line. The financial ‘bet’ would have been enormous. I think that is an excellent analysis!
 
Or rather, will be, since, reluctant or not, everything I know about the industry says the company must get on this track if it wishes to generate future success comparable to past success.
Conventional dslr cameras aren’t going away in the immediate future, but their days are clearly numbered.  Most people do not want to hear this, but it’s true!!!
All quibbles about this or that being different on a mirrorless are simply distractions from a larger certainty:
 
Conventional dslr cameras are the, “dead man walking”, of photography.
A one eyed blind guy with a bag over his head can see that.
 
The Sony and Fuji cameras I have been using have changed the way I shoot. And the cameras have been delightful to use.
(Well, with the exception of the Sony menu system which was clearly laid out by a Sony engineer who suffers from dyslexia, and was coming down from an LSD high when he laid them out.
Unquestionably all Sony A7 menu series meeting were held under the influence of hallucinogens & saki.)  Both hilarious and true!!!!
 
[Oh, and what moron put the on-off switch on the Leica SL on the back, left hand side…? Idiot.]
 
But I digress.
All I really meant to say when getting this shot set up to go out was: mirrorless makes black and white fun again.  Amen!!!
It makes experimenting fun again.    Amen!!!
 
I’m guessing nobody at Nikon is having a great deal of fun lately and that saddens me more than you would believe.   Me too Sam!
Now, I think that answers almost all the questions from the last 4 years.
Actually I still have a few, but this was a wonderful article!
 
Sam
Excellent food for thought Sam!
Blessings,
the pilgrim
1 month, 2 weeks ago 1
Posted in: Uncategorized

Burger

 

Wow, I never saw this one coming!!  I took Wes out for a burger after his last chemo treatment of the week and we tried a new spot in Corbin called John Evan Jack’s Pizza – Burgers & Wings  The

 

They had a great selection of burgers with stacks of patties of up to 12 thick!!!!!  No thanks, couldn’t do tht but I got a doubole and wow was it a w inner, 5 pickles good!!!!  Nathan Brown and his crew do it right!  They have a companion restaurant in Williamsburg just south of Corbin on I-75 called Cols. Market and Grill.

 

I’ll have to try that one out soon, but for now if you happen to be traveling north or south on I-75, take exit 25 and find their place, it’s only a few hundred feet from the exits. to the right if you are traveling south, obviously to the left if going north. Trust me it will be worth a stop!  5 big pickles!!!!  Please don’t try the 12 patty one, that’s down right dangerous!!!!

 

Blessings,

 

the pilgrim

 

1 month, 2 weeks ago 34
Posted in: Uncategorized

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I’m very thankful to be able to give you guys an update on Wes!!!  This week he started his fourth round of chemo and met with his oncologist/cancer specialist and they reviewed his most recent scan and blood work.  Her response was, “I’m tickled pink!”  She told Wes that if you wrote the story of how you wanted this to go, his story would be better than what you would have written.  She encouraged him to stick with it and that he was well on his way to winning this battle!!!!!  I’m thrilled to share this with all of you because this is your victory too!  Your prayers, your care, your concerns, gifts, cards, emails of encouragement have all moved God’s heart and we give all the credit to Him!

 

Wes has two more rounds of chemo after this week, then he will rest for a couple of weeks before going to Markey Cancer Center in Lexington for a bone marrow transplant, that is the final step and it is to assure him that he is cancer free and his own blood can rebuild itself.  That will be toughest part of the battle but we believe we are heading for a great outcome!  Please continue your prayers and when we finally celebrate a final victory you’re going to be a big part of it!

 

I could never tell you how deeply I have been touched by all of your responses, Wes has been moved to tears on several occasions just knowing what an army has been praying for him.  Our family will never, ever be able to repay you for your joining us in this fight!

 

Wealth comes in many forms, but true wealth is friends and brothers and sister like you!

 

Jim and Sue

 

Now I have a giant additional request!!!!  My dear brother and sister Jim and Sue Haverstock are facing cancer themselves.  Sue has been diagnosed with and is being treated for cancer.  She has had three chemo rounds and is preparing for her fourth.  She is doing well, but, as all you all know, chemo is not an easy path and some days are better than others.  You will be heartened to know that their faith is strong and that they are going through this like the champions that they are, but please lift them in your prayers.  Pray for great progress for Sue, for strength to face the day to day fight and for Jim as he steadfastly supports her.  I know of no finer couple and they have been constantly in my prayers, please join me!!  Let’s win this battle together!!  My prayer is that God has this and we can rest in Him.

 

Blessings and thankfulness,

 

the pilgrim