Introducing Stocksy Photographer Jacqui Miller

Since the start of February, we are featuring eight Stocksy photographers who use Fujifilm X Series cameras to capture their images for commercial use. Discover what they like about their kit and how they utilise the equipment to obtain the best results.

 

Our second interview is with Perth based photographer, Jacqui Miller.

Can you tell us about yourself and what you love most about photography?

 

Hi there! I live in Perth, Western Australia with my husband and two daughters. Growing up, I always had a desire to create art, but I was hopeless at drawing and painting. When I finally found photography, I found an art form that fit. I fell in love with slow shutter motion blur when I got my first DSLR in 2010.

 

You use a Fujifilm X100S to capture commercial images, how do you find the camera performs when compared to your digital SLR?

 

There are certain images I like to create where the X100S is my go to camera. For example, I find its lighter weight and compact size easier to handle when panning. I like playing with seascape and landscape motion images, and the X100S never disappoints.

 

What do you think are the most important things to look for when capturing an image?

 

For me, it’s content and mood. I love seeing images that evoke a strong emotional response in me. Those images stay with me for ages, and I revisit them often. To give you an example of images that have really moved me, I’ve created a gallery on Stocksy with some of my favourites from fellow Stocksy photographers.

What has been your favourite shot you have captured using the X100S? Can you tell us the story behind the image and let us know why you decided to take it that way?

 

My favourites are probably the abstract images. I love the whirling details in human movement, the way the colours blend together in seascapes and landscapes, and the intense colours and sharp lines when shooting lights at night. I have to remind myself to shoot the authentic scene as well because it’s too easy for me to get caught up in the abstract. Having said that, I love all of the images from my last holiday. I challenged myself to travel light, to leave my heavy camera gear at home and only take the X100S. It was amazing and utterly freeing.

 

Are there any photographers who have inspired your photography? Have their images pushed you to explore new techniques or to photograph new genres?

 

I’m inspired by so many photographers and by a whole range of styles and techniques. I feel like I should be able to reel off a list of the most influential photographers of all time but, to be honest, it’s current, everyday photographers who inspire me the most.

 

 

What has been your most successful commercial image taken with the X100S? Why do you think this picture has sold so well?

 

I’ve sold quite a few of my images taken with the X100S. I can’t think of any standouts, many of them are still relatively new to my online portfolio. I have had the pleasure of selling some of my abstract movement images. It’s always a thrill for me when I sell an image I enjoyed making.

 

 

From your experience, what should photographers be aware of when constructing online galleries for commercial sale? Are there any particular elements or genres that should be included?

 

I haven’t been in stock photography for long, and my knowledge/experience is limited. However, I do think it’s essential to be aware of the current trends (themes/colours) when shooting for commercial sale. I’m lucky to be a part of a company (Stocksy United) that has a dedicated editor team with high curatorial standards. In my experience, if I follow the current trends, those images are more likely to make it into the collection.

 

What advice can you give to someone who wishes to make their start as a photographer and why did you choose Stocksy to represent your work?

 

The best advice I ever received was ‘shoot what you love’, and that’s the first piece of advice I give to others. I also recommend uploading your best/favourite work to an online platform and get involved. I signed up to Flickr in 2010 when I received my first digital SLR. I joined groups, met loads of amazing people, learnt heaps and had loads of fun.

Eventually, it was an online contact which led me to Stocksy. I wasn’t actively looking for a stock agency at the time, but I loved everything I was reading/hearing about Stocksy. I was thrilled when they accepted my application.

 

 

X-Thusiast Featured Photographer – Billy Thompson

This month, Irish native Billy Thompson brightens our palette with some dazzling seascapes and nature photography. Learn why he loves the X-T2 and how he finds opportunity in everyday places.

Blue Moon – XF18-55mmF2.8-4 – F8 – 0.9 sec – ISO 200 

 

Can you tell us a bit about yourself and where you are from?

 

Hi everyone! I am Billy Thompson and I am a keen amateur photographer. I was born in Northern Ireland, and spent most of my childhood and early adult life living and working in County Antrim. In 2007, my work brought my family and I to South Australia where we now live. Our home is in the north western suburb of North Haven, about 22 km out of Adelaide. North Haven offers a relaxed beachside lifestyle, and it is the perfect base for getting to fantastic photography locations in and around Adelaide. Adelaide arguably has the best sunsets in the world!

 

 

How did you develop an interest in photography using Fujifilm equipment?

 

Growing up in Ireland, I was fascinated by the changes that each season brought. In particular I loved the coming of spring, the new growth, and the feeling of renewal and warmth. As a boy I started to play around with an old film camera and tried hard to capture the moments of rejuvenation that spring brought each year. Many years later, having moved to Australia I again fell in love with photography. It was a perfect means of capturing life in a new country. Fujifilm equipment provides me with a camera and lens system that meets my needs, creates crystal clear images, and has a lightweight setup tough enough to take anywhere. My X-T2 brings back fond memories of that old film camera I used as a boy.

Largs Jetty – XF 10-24mmF4 – F8 – 2.6 sec – ISO 200

 

How would you describe your photography style and strategy?

 

At heart, I’m a landscape photographer. I love nature, getting out with my camera exploring new locations, or revisiting familiar ones hoping to find a perfect composition. My preferred time of day to shoot is definitely around sunset; the change in light provides so much opportunity to nail a great shot. My strategy is all about taking photographs that make people stop and really look at what I have captured. I always aim to create images that will allow people to see just what I saw in that moment.

 

 

What inspires your photography?

 

I’m inspired by the beauty that is around us, not only the beauty found at iconic locations, but also the beauty that is right at our fingertips, in our backyards, on a local beach, or in the streets we walk everyday. Photography makes me look at and see the world in a different way. My brother-in-law Martin was an avid photographer and had the uncanny knack of being able to capture a shot that made you stop and look into the scene. Martin’s work and influence inspires me to take better shots.

The Bay – XF10-24mmF4 – F11 – 1 sec – ISO 100

 

Where are your favourite places to take photos and do you prefer a certain type of light to photograph in?

 

My favourite shots almost always contain a water element — river and oceanside locations are prominently featured in my work. Living close to the beach and the Port Adelaide River makes it easy to get out, and more often than not a seascape or riverscape shot is what catches my eye. The light at the end of the day is my preferred option, not just for the sunsets but also for that soft golden light that comes just before and after the sunset. After sunset, I will often hang around to watch the light slowly melt into blue hour.

 

 

What is your favourite memory from a photography session?

 

I have lots of fond memories from photo sessions, but if I had to pick a favourite it would have to be from a recent trip to Innes National Park in South Australia. Innes is a special place and the beauty of the area is just jaw dropping. To be honest, I don’t think my shots did it justice, but I loved the experience of being there and trying to capture it. It’s going to be a regular photography location for me in the future.

 

 

Can you tell us what your favourite Fujifilm camera to use is and why?

 

I shoot with the Fujifilm X-T2 and what impresses me most is the image quality. The images are just awesome straight out of the camera. Another joy is how lightweight and easy it is to use. The controls are very intuitive and give me the personalised options that I want right at my fingertips.

The Old Port – XF10-24mmF4 – 26 sec – F11 – ISO 200

 

Which Fujinon lens or lenses do you prefer to use with your Fujifilm camera and why?

 

I currently own three Fujinon lenses; the XF18-55mmF2.8-4 R LM OIS stays on my camera 90% of the time. It’s a great general purpose lens that produces exceptionally sharp images. When I’m in full landscape mode and want to get that big foreground element, I reach for my XF10-24mmF4 R OIS. This lens is amazing, I love the results I get from it. When I need that little bit of extra low light capability, I opt for the super sharp XF14mmF2.8 R. This little lens is a joy to use and when travelling it is my go-to wide angle lens.

 

 

What sort of workflow do you use in your photography? Do you shoot in RAW or JPEG?

 

I always shoot in RAW. I like to have total control of the post creative aspect of my work, and shooting in RAW allows me to do that. My typical workflow is copy the RAW file to Lightroom and convert it to DNG via Irident X-Transformer and then I post process in Lightroom. Occasionally I will use Photoshop to help with cleanup, removing unwanted objects, or for photo-stacking to help get total front to back sharpness.

 

 

Do you have any technical tips you’d like to share? Perhaps suggestions on the best lighting, shutter speed, white balance, aperture, ISO, etc? Other preferences?

 

As I mentioned earlier, my preferred time of day to shoot is without a doubt in the late evening around sunset. I like to slow the shutter speed down and to do that I use neutral density filters. I find that aperture priority mode is my default setting. It allows me to shoot at F8 to F13 which results in front to back sharp images and the ability to control my shutter speed to get that long-exposure look. ISO is almost always at 100 or 200, although in low light I will use ISO as a means of controlling my shutter speed to perfection. The X-T2 has fantastic dynamic range and bumping up the ISO can be done with absolute confidence.

 

 

Do you have advice for new photographers or the next potential X-Thusiast?

 

For me, there are three elements: composition, light and opportunity. Taking the opportunity to be out there as often as you can will allow you to hone your framing and composition skills and then just maybe when you get that perfect light you will be ready to nail your magic shot.

Haven – XF18-55mmF2.8-4 – F8 – 7 sec – ISO 100

 

To see more of Billy’s work visit his 500px portfolio or follow him on Instagram – @BTAdelaide.

 

If you or someone you know in Australia is interested in joining our X-Thusiast community, check out the full X-Thusiast Gallery and submission details here.

 

 

 

 

 

Introducing Stocksy Photographer Rowena Naylor

Over the next eight weeks, we will be featuring eight Stocksy photographers who use Fujifilm X Series cameras to capture their images for commercial use. Discover what they like about their kit and how they utilise the equipment to obtain the best results.

 

Our first interview is with Melbourne based photographer, Rowena Naylor.

 

Can you tell us about yourself and what you most love about photography?

 

I had my first camera at the age of 12, my father was the classic 1970s wedding photographer. I shudder when I look at his work now but being exposed to taking photos, developing, darkrooms and classic film cameras of the day apparently affected me as I haven’t put a camera down since. I eventually ‘gave up my day job’ to pursue a photography career in 2008, and have never looked back. I love my job!

 

Alongside shooting professionally for clients, I also have a healthy and expensive obsession with film and film cameras. I have even been experimenting with some of the old analogue lenses on the Fujifilm X-T2 recently and have loved the results.

 

You have previously used a Fujifilm X-T1 for your commercial work, how did you find the upgrade to the X-T2? Was there a noticeable difference in performance and quality?

 

I was definitely the classic early adopter of the Fujifilm X Series, I had my name on the waitlist for the very first X100 and can still remember the excitement when the camera store called to say it had arrived!

 

I followed through with purchasing the X-PRO1 followed by the X-T1 and most recently, the X-T2. It was a slow transition in using the X-T1 in my commercial work, but when the X-T2 arrived I put away the huge Digital SLR and used the X-T2 for all commercial and stock shooting.

 

Performance and quality are on par with what I was previously shooting with the Canon 5D MK II

 

When you photograph architectural interiors what are the steps you follow before a shoot? Do you do much preparation to get the scene ready?

 

Yes, quite a bit of prep is needed to get a great interior shot. It always worth checking natural light, sun direction and time of day that the room will look it best.

 

What has been the most challenging photography shoot you have done and how did this experience improve your photography?

 

I had a big energy company client that I worked for during the construction phase of gas drilling rigs. This was challenging work, especially working in tight spaces high up on rig platforms capturing workers and equipment being moved and placed by cranes. Working with the Fujifilm X Series cameras was great in these conditions. The small compact lenses offered easy portability and excellent low-light resolution. I found it easy to change lenses while moving around in tight areas with the camera strapped to my body. The X-T2 improved my work by giving me the confidence that I could take the camera anywhere without feeling it would be an encumbrance.

 

When you travel what Fujinon lenses do you take with you? Is there a mixture of wide angle, portrait and telephoto, or do you just take one lens?

 

I always travel with two Fujifilm bodies, the X-T2 and X-PRO1. I always find it difficult deciding which lens to take and which to leave behind. My favourite picks are always the XF56mmF1.2, XF23mmF1.4, XF16mm1.4 and the XF27mm2.8. I also usually pack the XF50-140mmF2.8 for most shoots too.

 

Can you take us through your workflow? Do you photograph in RAW or capture images in Jpeg? Is there much editing work involved?

 

I always shoot in RAW. The photos captured are imported into Adobe Lightroom, and editing is dependent on the client’s brief. I find I hardly crop images when post processing. I think I put this down to the fact that I shoot with primes, which force you into composing a scene in a particular way.

 

What do you like most about the Fujifilm X-T2, and if you were to add or improve a feature to assist your photography what would it be?

 

I love the weight and handling of the X-T2. When I need it to look like a big camera (for clients) I add the Vertical Battery Power Booster Grip. When I want to roam the streets, to make the camera smaller and lighter, I remove the grip and mount the XF27mmF2.8 pancake lens. Improvement? I am happy right now, but still, do dream of a full frame X-T model.

 

What advice can you give someone who wishes to make their start as a photographer and why did you choose Stocky to represent your work?

 

It seems everyone is a photographer these days, and I encourage that premise. We all need to catalogue and preserve our history and lives.

 

My advice to new photographers would be to work with prime lenses. Drop the zooms and teach yourself to move and frame your shot using one fixed focal length lens. Also if you intend to make it a career, I would say specialise in one area of photography, and be good at it.

I am honoured to have Stocksy present my work. They were introduced to me by a fellow stock photographer before start up, and I eagerly jumped on board. The growth and path they have taken since launch in 2013 has been amazing and empowering and I have definitely grown as a photographer by being part of the Stocksy Co-operative.

X-Thusiast Featured Photographer – David Tan

Our first X-Thusiast of 2018 evokes passion and inspiration with his colourful landscape photography. Learn how Singapore native David Tan uses his Fujifilm X-T1 to capture tranquil waters and sprawling outdoor scenes.

Kirkjufell – Fujifilm X-T1 with XF10-24mmF4 R OIS – 58 sec – F8​ – ISO 200

 

Can you tell us a bit about yourself and where are you from?

 

Hey everyone! My name is David, and I was born and raised in Singapore. I’ve been living on the Gold Coast for the past year and am in the midst of completing my Bachelor of Pharmacology. My photography focus started around weddings and portraiture but has moved purely to travel and landscapes in recent years. I have been in love with the Fujifilm collection for the past three years and am absolutely honoured to be featured by Fujifilm Australia.

 

 

How did you develop an interest in photography using Fujifilm equipment?

 

While hiking up a mountain in Norway with my DSLR and heavy photography gear, I realised I wanted something a lot more compact and light that had the image quality I was looking for. A friend introduced me to the X-T1 and after a bit of research, I made the jump to Fujifilm and have never looked back. The X-T1 produces amazing colours, is intuitive to use and is easy to bring along on my travels, which is important to me.

Vestrahorn – Fujifilm X-T1 with XF10-24mmF4 R OIS – 30 sec – F16 – ISO 200

 

How would you describe your photography style and strategy?

 

Tough question! I think my style is pensive, quiet and to an extent, almost melancholic. I commonly incorporate water movement as it really adds to the depth of the photo. That combined with beautiful geographic formations is what really does it for me. Funny enough, I don’t like having people in my landscapes, though I’m quite a people person. I may possibly explore that in the future.
As for strategy, it is quite straightforward. Find awesome locations, wait till sunset then photograph it!

 

 

What inspires your photography?

 

Nature. Every time I see a mountain, waterfall or lake, I immediately want to photograph it. They seem so peaceful and I could sit there the whole day looking at it. At sunrise and sunset, it’s pure magic.

 

 

Where are your favourite places to take photos and do you prefer a certain type of light to photograph in?

 

Iceland is the definite winner, it has amazing landscapes which change so dramatically within such a short distance and looks almost out of this world. Australia and New Zealand also have really beautiful landscapes and are much closer for me to travel to.

I absolutely love shooting at sunrise and sunset; the light is golden and the sky gets some crazy colours. It’s the best when the light hits from the side and you get such a good depth.

Stokksnes – Fujifilm X-T1 with XF10-24mmF4 R OIS – 125 sec – F16 – ISO 200

 

What is your favourite memory from a photography session?

 

My favourite memory would be photographing Vestrahorn, Iceland. Driving around Iceland for eight days, eating hot dogs and sleeping in the car was an absolute experience. I didn’t know about Vestrahorn but when I drove past, the mountains against the black sand and ocean, I knew I had go back. I remember trying out a technique to stretch the mountains in-camera and was so excited to process the photo when I got back. It ended up being my favourite photo of the trip!

 

 

Can you tell us what your favourite Fujifilm camera to use is and why?

 

I’ve only ever owned and used the Fujifilm X-T1 Silver Graphite. It’s an amazing camera, aesthetically pleasing, shoots great photos and does everything I need it to do. The X-T2 would be an awesome upgrade and maybe the X100F might slip in there too!

Nugget Point – Fujifilm X-T1 with XF10-24mmF4 R OIS – 30 sec – F11 – ISO 200

 

Which Fujinon lens or lenses do you prefer to use with your Fujifilm camera and why?

 

For my landscape work, I exclusively use the XF 10-24mm F4. It’s got the focal range I need and has amazing image quality, much love for this lens. The XF 56mm F1.2 and XF 35mm F1.4 are also amazing lenses that I have used. Very sharp lenses, great colour and flare.

 

 

What sort of workflow do you use in your photography? Do you shoot in RAW or JPEG?

 

I’m a very straightforward workflow kind of guy. 30s shutter speed, ISO 200, f16, manual focus, 10-stop ND filter and tripod. This sets me up for the majority of my shots and really helps to keep me focused with composition rather than worrying about all the settings. I shoot JPEG + RAW which allows me to process multiple exposures of my photos in camera, which I then bring into Photoshop. Simple luminance masking brings back any details lost in shadows, luminance toning, colour toning, selective sharpening and a slight vignette to finish it all off!

 

 

Do you have any technical tips you’d like to share? Perhaps suggestions on the best lighting, shutter speed, white balance, aperture, ISO, etc? Other preferences?

 

Get comfortable with the technical side of it and know which parameters you need to achieve the look you’re going for, everything else is just compensation. A great way to start is aperture or shutter speed control. Once that’s down, your mind is free to explore the creative side of things without having to worry about the technical.
Again, I am a huge advocate of shooting during sunset, the light is golden, colours are vibrant and everything just looks beautiful. I’m also a lot more awake at sunset compared to sunrise. Knowing the location and how you plan on photographing it is also important for landscapes as it will determine if sunrise or sunset will work better for the photo.

 

 

Do you have advice for new photographers or the next potential X-Thusiast?

 

Make memories, not just photos. Too many times have I just gone out just to photograph an amazing location to come back home realising I didn’t soak it all in. Enjoy the view, sit on it and then, take the photo.

Arnarstapi – Fujifilm X-T1 with XF10-24mmF4 R OIS – 30 sec – F16 – ISO 200

 

Would you like to become our next featured X-Thusiast photographer? Check out our full X-Thusiast Gallery and submission details.

 

 

 

 

 

X-Thusiast Featured Photographer – Alessia Francischiello

This month’s featured photographer is Italian-born Alessia Francischiello, a freelance photographer with lots of wisdom to share about getting the right shot and finding the best photos even in the most unlikely places.

 

Can you tell us a bit about yourself and where you are from?

 

Hi to all Fujifilm lovers. I am Alessia Francischiello and come from Italy. I’ve been living in Australia for the last four years and it’s been full of opportunities in the photography field, especially thanks to Fujifilm, which I have been using for the last three years. I am, in fact, honoured to be featured by Fujifilm Australia, which is the greatest company I ever dealt with. I work in a camera store in Sydney and am a freelance photographer. My passion for photography started about seven years ago while living in Rome, mostly interested in street and architectural style. Studying photography for several years in Italy and Australia caused my interest to turn to portraiture, as I am a real people person. My photography now is mostly beauty and fashion, with a few publications done for magazines around the world, but I also enjoy landscape and street photography.

 

 

How did you develop an interest in photography using Fujifilm equipment?

 

I haven’t always been a Fujifilm shooter because when I started there weren’t all the amazing options we have now with this brand. Since I bought my first X-T1 my passion for photography grew more and more, thanks to the excellence of the products and the feeling of comfort using them. I felt so confident in shooting portraits thanks to the discretion of the equipment and its portability. I also enjoy the colours and the old style dials on top of the cameras which are great for people who just shoot manual like I do.

‘Black Soul’ – Fujifilm X-T2 with XF50-140mmF2.8 R LM OIS WR – F5.6 – 1/125 second – ISO 200

 

How would you describe your photography style and strategy?

 

My style is made by anything that communicates effectively and is enjoyable for the viewers. Mostly studio or outdoor fashion and beauty style.

 

I like to keep it natural as much as I can. I like new and original ideas. I take my time to create mood boards and work closely with makeup artists and models to make sure we always have innovative and creative content.

 

 

What inspires your photography?

 

People! I love being around people and making them feel comfortable (models or not), which is an easy task with Fujifilm equipment. How many of you felt like paparazzi when using a big DSLR? Well, I did! I like discretion and not being invasive showing off my equipment to everyone.

‘Simple is Perfect’ – Fujifilm X-T2 with XF56mmF1.2 R – F1.2 – 1/500 second – ISO 200

 

 

Where are your favourite places to take photos and do you prefer a certain type of light to photograph in?

 

Australia is full of places to take stunning shots. I love water and beaches, which are not hard to find here. I love natural light because you have to deal with it and it pushes you to think about it. I am also fascinated by studio lighting because it is editable and you can learn how to control it to make your own ideas come true.

 

 

What is your favourite memory from a photography session?

 

I have many memories and positive experiences. But I can say the best moment I remember is during my last beauty session, shot with studio lights indoor, where this model was so into the role of punk diva that we laughed genuinely for half an hour.

 

 

Can you tell us which is your favourite Fujifilm camera to use and why?

 

I currently use X-T2 and a bunch of XF lenses that all work smooth on it. Its fast performance allows me to shoot in any situation and any weather, because it’s weather-sealed, and I feel comfortable not worrying about it. I shoot in windy and sandy situations, rainy, low light and it never lets me down. The low light capability in this new version is astonishing and I wouldn’t change it. I love its ergonomic grip which makes it easy to balance with any kind of lens, like for example the XF50-140mmF2.8.

 

 

Which Fujinon lens or lenses do you prefer to use with your Fujifilm camera and why?

 

I love my XF56mm1.2 R! The best lens I have ever used and the speed and sharpness allows me to use it in studio or outdoor without limits. Even at F1.2 the sharpness doesn’t look compromised and this is one of the most important characteristics I like about it.

 

My second favourite lens is the XF18mmF2. It’s affordable, small and fast. It’s my first choice when I am on holiday, hiking or with friends in day or nighttime, because it’s discrete and the sharpness is high standard for the price you pay.

 

I have to say, Fujifilm is the only brand with such great quality lenses in any price range, and for any kind of shooters.

‘Natural Beauty’ – Fujifilm X-T2 with XF56mmF1.2 – F2.2 – 1/125 second – ISO 200

 

 

What sort of workflow do you use in your photography? Do you shoot in RAW or JPEG?

 

I am not a big fan of post-processing but when you work with models and fashion products you don’t have much choice. I always try to keep my work as real as possible and help the viewer to recognise the real beauty. I use mostly Lightroom for quick editing and Photoshop for deeper improvements. Both perfectly compatible with Fujifilm files.

 

I always shoot Raw+JPEG. Raw is necessary for me, especially for work, because I want to have the best file I can to work on after. I am fascinated by the quality of JPEGs in this camera: Colours are shiny and real, quality is amazing despite the compression and having the WiFi option, I love to share the JPEGs straight out of the camera, especially when on holiday and have no time to do post-processing.

 

As you can see, these products can be used for really any kind of photography.

‘Innocence’ – Fujifilm X-T2 with XF56mmF1.2 – F2 – 1/5000 second – ISO 200

 

 

Do you have any technical tips you’d like to share? Perhaps suggestions on the best lighting, shutter speed, white balance, aperture, ISO, etc.? Other preferences?

 

Have fun and enjoy your moments with the camera! I never had more fun shooting in my life than now that I am using these products. I feel I can do anything I want with it in my hands. Some people told me this is not the best brand if I wanted to do studio photography. Well, my pictures speak for me.

 

A tip for X-T2 shooters: Get your Power Booster Grip and use it all the time. It’s perfect to balance long telephoto lenses or to get better performance from your camera anywhere, anytime. I always have it with me and it makes the difference.

 

 

Do you have advice for new photographers or the next potential X-Thusiast?

 

Don’t think a portrait is good just when the background is blurred or a landscape is stunning only when it’s all sharp. Be creative, help innovate the way people look at images. Create a story, not only a picture. What remains of them nowadays is just a big file on your computer unless you’re able to push yourself to the limits and try something different. And if you own a Fujifilm camera you’ll understand how good it feels when you’re equipment thinks like you do, responds to your needs and is your loyal friend in any situation.

 

Don’t buy a camera because it looks professional, buy it because when you use it — it makes you feel you’re doing the right thing, learn on it and make mistakes. The best photos are the ones you weren’t meant to take.

‘Simple is Perfect 2’ – Fujifilm X-T2 with XF56mmF1.2 – F7.1 – 1/125 second – ISO 200

 

To see more of Alessia’s photography follow her on Instagram, Facebook or visit alessiafrancischiello.com

 

Interested in becoming our next featured X-Thusiast photographer? Check out our full X-Thusiast Gallery and submission details.

X-Thusiast Featured Photographer – Stephen Vincent-Grace

We caught up with photographer Stephen Vincent-Grace this month to learn more about how to capture the beauty of the world, and find out what inspires him to continue to pursue photography as a hobby.

Can you tell us a bit about yourself and where you are from?

 

My name is Stephen Vincent-Grace, although everyone knows me as SVG. I am originally from Adelaide but have lived in Italy, England and the U.S.A. and have now settled in Melbourne, where I am product manager for a creative online marketplace. Besides photography, I am a crazy soccer fan and love to travel with 37 countries ticked off my bucket list.

 

How did you develop an interest in photography using Fujifilm equipment?

 

My interest in Fujifilm developed when I was on a trip to New York a few years back. I had my DSLR gear and over a three-week period took it out twice due to the pain of carrying it around everywhere. Subsequently after that trip I didn’t take a photo for over a year. I knew then it was time to sell the DSLR and look for something else. The X-Pro2 had just come out and I needed a camera. I instantly fell in love with the rangefinder look and manual dials of the brand. I read reviews and I was sold on Fujifilm and have been in love with it ever since.

Fujifilm X-Pro2 with XF16mmF1.4 R WR – 1.3 seconds – F5 – ISO 200

 

How would you describe your photography style and strategy?

 

Interesting question. I would say my style is still evolving; at the moment it’s about big iconic landscapes and cityscapes with lots of colours but I am also exploring something different from this. I am working on something surrounding the ACROS film simulation with not a landscape in sight. In regards to my strategy, so far it is to research places that inspire me and then plan to see them and share my take on them.

 

What inspires your photography?

 

I get inspired by the the Fujifilm X community, from official X photographers such as Elia Locardi and Jonas Rask (who are my idols) to fellow Fujifilm X enthusiasts. I see what they can create and it inspires me to know that we are all using the same tools and that I can hopefully create beautiful photos like everyone else. It’s nice to know there is a community out there that is passionate and positive.

Fujifilm X-Pro2 with XF10-24mmF4 R OIS – 20 seconds – F10 – ISO 100

 

Where are your favourite places to take photos and do you prefer a certain type of light for photography?

 

I just love diverse and beautiful landscapes, so it has to be Iceland and New Zealand. They are a photographer’s paradise and they are small enough you can see so many different sites in a short period of time. If I am not wanting a landscape, then for the amazing skyline or cool street photos, it has to be New York City. For me, when it comes to light, it’s the tried-and-tested formula of sunrise and sunset. Sunrise is amazing as it’s hard to do, as you have to get up so early but that is why it is so rewarding because you get lovely, soft light and there are usually not many people around. I think the blue hour is magical too, especially at sunset.

Fujifilm X-Pro2 with XF10-24mmF4 R OIS – 1 second – F11 – ISO 100

 

What is your favourite memory from a photography session?

 

My favourite memory is going to Aldeyjarfoss, Iceland. I went to Iceland for five days and hired a tiny campervan and tried to get a few shots in a small amount of time. The magic of Aldeyjarfoss was that I had to drive to a spot in the middle of nowhere, sleep the night at the bottom of a path that could only be accessed via four-wheel drive or on foot. The next morning I got up at 4am, walked 45 minutes with no maps, hoping I was going the right way. When I got there, it was so magical that I got emotional because of how beautiful it was and the adventure of getting there.

 

Can you tell us what’s your favourite Fujifilm camera and why?

 

My favourite camera is the one I own, the Fujifilm X-Pro2. I just love the look and feel of the camera. It can be used as a general purpose camera for travel and landscape or it can be the iconic rangefinder street camera. I probably shouldn’t admit this but it sits on my desk at home and sometimes I just look at it and admire the aesthetic of the camera or just pick it up for no reason.

 

Which Fujinon lens or lenses do you prefer to use with your Fujifilm X-Pro2 and why?

 

My current lens lineup starts with the XF35mmF2, which I use for general walk-around, weddings for friends and family and sometimes for landscapes if my XF10-24mmF4 is too wide. The next is the XF10-24mmF4, which I purely use for landscapes and cityscapes. I absolutely love this lens, although it would be even more amazing if it had weather sealing. The last lens I own is XF56mmF1.2, which I use for portraits and weddings for friends. I intend on getting the XF55-200mm as I need a telephoto for that extra reach on some of my travel adventures. I have also just seen the newly announced XF8-16mmF2.8 WR; if it lives up to expectations and isn’t crazy big then I might have to add that, too!

Fujifilm X-Pro2 with XF10-24mmF4 R OIS – 25 seconds – F9 – ISO 100

 

What sort of workflow do you use in your photography? Do you shoot in RAW or JPEG?

 

I shoot mostly RAW, I import the photos, just copying them over to my computer then use Photo Mechanic for the cull process. I then use Adobe LR and Nik Collection and a touch of Photoshop for sharpening and corrections if needed. I have just become a Capture One Beta tester, so I want to teach myself how to use this software as I have heard it handles the X-Trans raws a lot better than Adobe. I do use JPEG when I shoot in ACROS as I have read the JPEGs are tied so closely to the processor that there is a slight difference when coming straight out of camera.

Do you have any technical tips you’d like to share? Perhaps suggestions on the best lighting, shutter speed, white balance, aperture, ISO, etc.? Other preferences?

 

I don’t think I have specific tips as I feel settings really depend on the lighting conditions you are in or what style of photography you are doing. However, my general tips would be first and foremost read the manual of your camera inside out. I actually bought a tip book for the Fujifilm X-Pro2, which explained in detail some of the functions that helped me get the most of my camera and understand some of the settings and how to best set them. I also follow so many blogs and photography Twitter feeds and always find something new I didn’t know. Finally, just keep practicing and use the camera as much as you can.

Fujifilm X-Pro2 with XF10-24mmF4 R OIS – 9 seconds – F10 – ISO 250

 

Do you have advice for new photographers or the next potential X-Thusiast?

 

Enjoy your Fuji camera, go out and shoot and love the photography journey you are on. It’s a journey that never has to end and can go anywhere you want to take it.

 

To see more of Stephen’s photography follow him on Instagram, PhotoDune or visit his website.

 

Are you interested in becoming our next featured X-Thusiast photographer? Check out our full X-Thusiast Gallery and submission details.

 

FUJIFILM GFX 50S: A Professional’s View

By Steven Hanna

Professional photographer and current PPANI Landscape Photographer of the Year 2017, Steven Hanna is from Northern Ireland and specialises in wedding and landscape photography. The FUJIFILM X-T2 and FUJIFILM X-Pro2 are his usual weapons of choice, however eager to try out the FUJIFILM GFX 50S, Steven recently put the medium format system through its paces. In this interview, we find out how he got on.


Continue reading FUJIFILM GFX 50S: A Professional’s View

TAPE: Series 3 – 10 Photographers Share Their Advice

Over the last ten weeks you would have seen ten interviews forming series three of Through a Photographer’s Eye (TAPE). In each interview, we heard from a handful of Australian photographers and how they use Fujifilm X Series cameras to photograph the world around them.

Before series four of Through a Photographer’s Eye begins next month, let us take a look back at what advice was shared when each photographer was asked the question:

 

If you have some advice for someone starting out in photography what would it be?

 

Johny Spencer

Shoot what you love and love what you shoot. When you’re obsessed with the thing you like, in my case photography, it will keep you shooting even when you get stuck on the technical stuff.

Your passion for the subject will push your creativity and help you overcome any challenge you face in your photography journey. – Read the full interview here.

Fujifilm X-Pro2 – XF10-24mmF4 R OIS – 10mm – 1/60 second – F8 – ISO 200

 

Gavin Host

I believe learning how to work with light is the first step to understanding photography, and the only way to do this is to experiment. Learn how to shoot using manual before you begin automating anything (other than focus). It’s very important to understand the basics of ISO, aperture and shutter speed and how they impact both each other and the final photograph, before leaving it to the camera to decide anything. You’ll make mistakes and take some horrendous photographs (I cringe at some of my earlier work!) but it’s the best way to learn.

Also, find someone that is in the industry that you respect and ask them as many questions as you possibly can. I spent six months on work experience with one of Perth’s top fashion photographers and although it was in an area that I didn’t pursue, the knowledge that I gained from working alongside him on a daily basis formed the foundation for my photographic skills.

Immerse yourself in photography if that’s truly what you want to be doing. I literally never leave the house without a camera (be it film or digital). – Read the full interview here.

Koh Rong Sanloem, Cambodia – Fujifilm X-T1 – XF23mmF1.4 R – F2 – 1/640 second – ISO 400

 

Mike Bell

Photography is obviously a passion and not a job most people would choose if they were not into it, so by having that passion for what you do you are already halfway there. Create a service for clients that is reliable and ALWAYS deliver what you promise.

Taking an interest in your customer’s business, showing them you have done your research always helps. Never stop looking for new clients, self-marketing is key. Your creativity and skill will get you so far, that’s almost the easy bit, creating a customer base and the way you deal with your clients can be the difficult bit. – Read the full interview here.

Fujifilm X-T1 – XF16mmF1.4 R WR – 1/80 second – F2.2 – ISO 320

 

Ryan Cantwell

Don’t worry about the fancy technical side of the gear. Get a cheap camera and work with that. Don’t rely on editing so much. If you’re growing up in a ‘boring’ town that offers a lot of mundane surroundings and you feel like there’s nothing pretty to take photos of then you’re not paying enough attention.

You will learn to find ‘beauty’ and oddities in places rather than just visiting the regular postcard scenes and look outs. Look at art paintings and how they applied technique and composition. Paintings have been around a lot longer than the camera. Be forward with yourself and the people you approach it can be awkward, but your results will be more to the point you have in mind. Sometimes don’t take photos, so you can live in semi regret you didn’t take a photo of a wonderful thing, move on and remind yourself to be more mindful next time. – Read the full interview here.

 

Sarp Soysal

I’d say the biggest piece of advice I’d like to share with young photographers is not to get trapped in the technical side of photography or with camera reviews, equipment choices and stuff.

In my opinion, the most important first step is to get to know the gear that you have, whatever it might be, and understand everything about it so you can learn how to work with it and how to make it work for you. Because at the end of the day, when someone is looking at your photographs, no one cares really about what settings you used or what camera you have. It’s about the story you tell.

As any skill or art form, it requires a lot of practice. So take your camera with you everywhere and use every outing as a learning opportunity. Devote 20 hours a week, every week to making photographs. Get yourself a good pair of walking shoes and hit the streets or parks of your town or city and just shoot. Eventually, you’ll find your voice, and then you can focus on developing your own photographic style to tell your own stories. – Read the full interview here.

 

Harrison Candlin

Just pick up a camera and have a go. A lot of learning comes from mistakes I have realised. Dedication is something you will need to develop over time. It’s a fundamental key in developing your style, your photography quality and most importantly, being there to capture it. I have driven numerous six-hour drives to the same places just to get the shot I want, only to find out I couldn’t get it. However, if you’re dedicated enough, you’ll always want to go back and pursue it. The beauty of photography though is you might not always get your intended shot, but something else will always pop up. To be honest, most of my work has happened this way. Capture it, work the scene, change your angles, get down low or up high and fire away. Improvise and be spontaneous. – Read the full interview here.

 

Geoff Marshall

Learn the basics of exposure such as aperture, shutter, ISO and how to use them in combination to achieve desired outcomes. Consider your composition and just get out there and shoot. Analyse your photos, be self-critical and learn from your mistakes (we all make them) and develop a technique that you are happy with and produces results that you like. Don’t try and please everybody with your photographs, that’s an impossible task to achieve, we are all different, what one person likes the next will not. – Read the full interview here.

Fujifilm X-E1 with XF18-55mmF2.8-4 R LM OIS – 1/60 – F5 – ISO 800

 

Myles Kalus

Looking into gear, I would say to buy a camera that is straightforward to use. A lot of cameras these days have added functionalities that sometimes become a distraction. I’ve personally found that the fewer choices I have, the more concentrated I’ve been with learning and studying the camera and photography. If possible, I’d highly recommend a camera with an electronic viewfinder (EVF) as it allows you to immediately see how the settings affect exposure and depth-of-field. All these factors taken into consideration will speed up your learning process significantly, and improve your technical mastery within a short span.

From a photography perspective, I’ve always advised newcomers to find a few photographers of which their works you like, go through their work obsessively, learn what is it about their work that you admire, and try to replicate their work. This forces you to experiment with your camera and pushes your eye to see what and how they saw and why they photographed it. – Read the full interview here.

Fujifilm X-T2 with XF56mmF1.2 R – 1/1000 second – F1.2 – ISO 640

 

Matt Murray

Learn as much as you can about your camera: read the manual, watch YouTube videos, go to photography meets, ask lots of questions. Although many photographers – including myself – always want the latest and greatest camera gear, some of my favourite photos were taken with my least expensive Fujifilm kit: an X-T10 and either the XF18-55mmF2.8-4 R LM OIS or the XF35mmF1.4 R lenses (approximately $1200 worth of gear).

Learn as much as you can about photography. There are so many good free websites and resources out there these days. Follow photographers on Instagram and study their photos. Join photography related Facebook groups – I’m a member of about a dozen. Post your work in there and ask for constructive criticism. One excellent group I recommend is Fuji X Australia where a dedicated group of admins encourage and support Australian and New Zealand Fujifilm photographers. – Read the full interview here.

Fujifilm X-T1 with XF18-55mmF2.8-4 R LM OIS

 

Marc Busoli

Shoot as much and as often as you can. Do workshops and join photo walks, there are plenty of free options around the place, I think that’s a great path to education around photography. Be open to other styles and ideas. Take feedback well from people whose photography you admire, but always remember that you should only ever shoot to make yourself happy, that is what matters. – Read the full interview here.

Fujifilm X-T1 with XF35mmF1.4 R – 1/140 second – F3.2 – ISO 400

Through a Photographer’s Eye: Marc Busoli

Welcome to the Third Series of Through a Photographer’s Eye. In this series, we continue to learn about Australian photographers and how they use X Series Cameras to photograph their world around them. Our tenth interview in Series Three is with Queensland based photographer, Marc Busoli.

Marc, can you tell us about yourself and why you enjoy photographing people on the street?

 

I started photography in 1992 when I obtained a camera from my sister. I did a three-year diploma in photography five years after that and since then have shot images for commercial use, weddings, portraits and several blogs. I moved to my Fujifilm system after years of shooting with a full frame camera when I bought the original X100 and was blown away by the image quality and design of the camera. I loved it. I enjoy street style photography as it gives me an opportunity to observe and record the interaction of society in a shared space. I particularly like the idea of solitude in a crowded environment, people being on their own when surrounded by a crowd. I try to hide the faces of the people I photograph to accentuate the feeling of solitude and aloneness in a crowded city. I also enjoy the simplicity of simple designs in architecture, so I publish a few photos on my Instagram to mix it up a bit!

Fujifilm X-T1 with XF35mmF1.4 R – 1/500 second – F9 – ISO 400

 

 

You mentioned you use the Fujifilm X-T1 with two primary lenses. What made you choose this camera over other mirrorless bodies and how do you find Fujinon optics for general everyday shooting?

 

I love the design of this camera, I’ve used a ton of cameras after working at Digital Camera Warehouse for seven years, and I can say that this is by far the best camera I’ve used. It just disappears when I’m using it, that’s really important to me as I don’t want the camera slowing me down due to bad design and the Fujifilm just is so natural to use for me.

 

The lenses themselves are just so sharp and not too big to be in the way when the camera is swinging around. The results are very sharp with a lovely bokeh. The two I use are the XF14mmF2.8 and the XF35mmF1.4. The XF35mmF1.4 just lives on the body, and I must admit I hardly ever pull the wide one out. The 35mm perfectly suits my eye and the results are faultless for my style.

Fujifilm X-T1 with XF35mmF1.4 – 1/18 second – F1.4 – ISO 800

 

 

Why do you shoot mainly in black and white? Do you use a Fujifilm Film Simulation to recreate a particular look or do you edit your RAW files in post-processing?

 

I love black and white. I started a hashtag #52weeksofblackandwhite to challenge myself to shoot an entire year of just black and white. That was over two years ago, and I haven’t stopped! I shoot in RAW before converting the photo using the Fujifilm Monochrome+R film simulation in camera. I send it to my iPad and do final edits in Snapseed and/or Lightroom mobile. Then it goes to social media. For more control, I import the RAW straight to my MacBook Pro and edit with Lightroom/Photoshop.

Fujifilm X-T1 with XF35mmF1.4 – 1/420 second – F1.4 – ISO 1250

Fujifilm X-T1 with XF35mmF1.4 R – 1/55 second – F1.4 – ISO 1250

 

 

When using the Fujifilm X-T1 do you ever use the flip out LCD screen for street shooting or do you prefer to use the large electronic viewfinder? Can you explain why you shoot like this?

 

I use either the viewfinder (which is great, beautiful and big) or shoot from the hip without looking at the viewfinder or the LCD. Kind of Lomo style, it can produce some interesting shots, but it is very hit and miss, as you can imagine. Most times it’s using the viewfinder though, less distracting although you need to keep your non-shooting eye open, so you don’t miss any opportunities, this can be hard at the beginning.

Fujifilm X-T1 with XF35mmF1.4 R – 1/60 second – F1.4 – ISO 800

 

 

If you have some advice for someone starting out in photography what would it be?

 

Shoot as much and as often as you can. Do workshops and join photo walks, there are plenty of free options around the place, I think that’s a great path to education around photography. Be open to other styles and ideas. Take feedback well from people whose photography you admire, but always remember that you should only ever shoot to make yourself happy, that is what matters.

Fujifilm X-T1 with XF35mmF1.4 R – 1/140 second – F3.2 – ISO 400

 

 

Do you have a favourite photo you have recently captured using the Fujifilm X-T1? Can you tell us the story about how you shot the photo and why you chose to compose the shot like you did?

 

This picture of a massive cloud formation off the Queensland coast is one of my favourite images. I used the XF14mmF2.8 to get as much in the frame as I could at the time. It was just massive in reality and when I cropped the image I pretty much just removed the top and bottom, but the width stayed the same. I tried to compose the shot to get a sense of the scale of the formation, and I really like how it turned out. I even managed to capture a little cloud-to-cloud lightning!

Fujifilm X-T1 with XF14mmF2.8 R – 2.5 seconds – F5.6 – ISO 200

 

 

In your opinion, what’s the best time of day to photography on the street and can you recommend any camera settings for someone who might wish to shoot similar photos?

 

Shooting street is such a reflection of the society that you’re recording that the ‘best’ time to shoot is any time that there are people around! I do prefer the drama of a late afternoon with some direct sunlight streaming in at a shallow angle. People in Melbourne CBD will know what I mean! I love to shoot directly into the light in those situations as I think it adds a sense of the dramatic to the scene, long shadows, silhouettes, bursts of light. It does tend to expose any limitations of your glass, but I’ve found the Fujifilm glass handles harsh direct light superbly.

Fujifilm X-T1 with XF14mmF2.8 R – 1/60 second – F22 – ISO 320

 

What methods do you use when trying to photograph people on the street? For example is there a best way to approach people if you see someone interesting or are there any ‘don’t do this’ for street photographers?

 

One of my favourite techniques is finding a spot with some awesome lighting, like under a street light at night or a late sunset, and staking the place out waiting for the perfect person to come onto my ‘stage.’ You need to be aware and ready to fire as soon as an opportunity presents itself, I’ve missed a few great shots when I was starting out simply by not recognising an upcoming opportunity. People are more open to being approached these days I think, mainly due to the ubiquitous of images and social media, I think they like the idea of potentially going a bit viral!

Fujifilm X-T1 with XF14mmF2.8 R – 1/340 second – F5.6 – ISO 320

 

To see more of Marc’s photography visit him on Instagram – @themadbusdi.

Previous interviews from Series Three of Through a Photographer’s Eye:

Through a Photographer’s Eye: Johny Spencer

Through a Photographer’s Eye: Gavin Host

Through a Photographer’s Eye: Mike Bell

Through a Photographer’s Eye: Ryan Cantwell

Through a Photographer’s Eye: Sarp Soysal

Through a Photographer’s Eye: Harrison Candlin

Through a Photographer’s Eye: Geoff Marshall

Through a Photographer’s Eye: Myles Kalus

Through a Photographer’s Eye: Matt Murray