Fuji X-T20

A trip to the river - breaking-in my Fujinon XF 56mm F1.2 R

Last Saturday I went down to the river with a handful of friends and decided to bring my brand new Fujinon 56mm F1.2 R and my Fujifilm X-T20 along with me. I've never owned a lens as expensive as this one before. I bought it brand new at $999, so when I snapped it on to my camera I was praying that it would "wow" me.

We'll see if the 56mm lives up to my hopes and dreams in a bit, but lets talk about my lenses a little first.

Fujinon XF 35mm F2 R WR

Fujinon XF 35mm F2 R WR

When I purchased my X-T20 I decided to grab Fuji's 35mm F2 along with it. It was said to be a small, light weight, inexpensive, optically amazing, 50mm full frame equivalent that all first time Fuji buyers should own. I thought to myself, "50mm standard focal length! Of course I need that! It's going to be perfect!". It never occurred to me that when I owned my Nikon D800 I only used an 85mm 1.8 and a 35mm 1.4 manual focus for all my shooting needs.

I wasn't used to the 50mm focal length. The only 50mm I own is my dad's old Nikkor 50mm 1.4 that I only use on my Nikon FE. Furthermore, I've stated several times in this blog that I don't shoot film much, so in turn, I don't use a 50mm lens much.

So when I started to play around with the Fuji XF 35mm it just didn't feel right. Maybe it was the f/2.0 minimum aperture that didn't give me the kind of bokeh I really wanted. Maybe it was that feeling in my gut telling me "I just wish I was tighter in" or "I really want to be a bit wider right now". Something was off. Because of this I slowly began to realize that the 50mm focal length is just not for me.

And so I sought a new lens, one that would give me what I needed.

Fujinon XF 56mm F1.2 R

Fujinon XF 56mm F1.2 R

I did a ton of research before pulling the trigger on this lens. Hours of YouTube reviews and tons of galleries from all across the internet. I just wanted to make sure I wasn't going to be let down again. The 35mm F2 is in no way a bad lens. It's tack sharp and renders colors beautifully. But it just wasn't the lens for me. I needed something familiar. I needed an 85.

I'm excited to tell you that the 56mm F1.2 is exactly what dreamed it would be. This lens' focal length is equivalent to an 85mm, just what I was looking for. It's not without it's faults, but there are many things I can look past if it delivers the images that I see in my mind.

When shooting wide open with this lens, the world becomes a dreamlike blur of bokeh and magic. All of the photos I took at the river were shot at either f/1.2 or f/1.8 in bright sunlight. I shot these in JPEG, which was probably a mistake because the sun was blowing out a lot of things most of the time, but It wasn't a professional job so I don't really give a shit.

The Fujinon 56mm F1.2 R is an absolute pleasure to shoot with. I can't wait to bring it to Japan in December and make some killer images.

I thought I would also try and create some sequential pieces for some of the "jumping into the river" shots I got as well.

Cascadia Strength - Assisting on a Portfolio Shoot

On Sunday I helped Justin Myers with his portfolio shoot at Cascadia Strength. I was able to shoot some photos as well. I shot a handful of good photos and some Behind the Scenes shots for Justin. We got to shoot some CrossFit athletes that day, it was an awesome experience.

I had a chance to play with the X-T20's Acros Black and White filter for the first time and I really enjoyed the results. I shot all of the photos in jpeg format and wanted a higher contrast look so I set the Highlight Tone to +1 and the Shadow Tone to +3. I also shot with Acros' Green Filter for "pleasing skin tones". I edited the photos a bit in Lightroom.

Here's some BTS for Justin's shots as well.

Shots from Jimmy and Conley's Going Away Party

Two of my best friends, Jimmy and Conley, are moving to Nagoya, Japan next week. Last Night they threw a Going Away Party and it was so much fun. I saw a lot of people who I hadn't seen in years and it was a blast. I hope these shots help celebrate Jimmy and Conley and all of the people who love them. Safe travels my friends. I love you both.

Last night was also a great opportunity to test out my new Fujifilm X-T20. For these shots I used three different lenses, a Fujinon XF 18-55mm f/2.8-4 R LM OIS, a Fujinon XF 35mm f/2 R WR, and a Nikon Nikkor S.C Auto 50mm f/1.4 w/ Fotasy Nik-FX Adaptor. All I can say is that I am in love with this camera. The joy I feel shooting with this Fuji is something I haven't felt since leaving photo school. I'm simply blown away. The files look great and even shooting at 8000 ISO in the low light of the bar the Fuji produced files that still looked good for the web. All of the photos were shot in jpeg and some editing was done, hence the artifacting on some of the shots.