Straight From the Journal
I am starting a new series of posts that are direct entries from my journals. They are unedited, full of typos, grammar mistakes, shorthand spelling -- representing my raw thoughts not only on the trail but off. One of my winter projects will be to digitize a good number of my journal entries from the past four years in the hopes of sharing what life has been like, from a very personal perspective, as I have moved from one phase of my life to the next.
This first post is from this morning as I continue to play with the little Fuji X100s. Images are from a brief walkabout through the early morning fog. Edited in Lightroom 5 from raw files:
Fuji X100s arrived two days ago. Having decided to make the plunge, I was pretty anxious for the little beast to arrive. This is probably one of the first cameras or even electronic gadgets, that I have purchased sight unseen. Such was the hype and testimonials of this camera that I felt safe in that purchasing decision.
Nearly impossible to find, I did a google search for Maine camera stores, picked up the phone and called. Low and behold, a brand new unit sat on the back shelf and yes, I could buy it over the phone. Karma, man, you gotta believe. Two days later the camera arrived.
Like a kid a Xmas, I waited until bed time to open the box. Nice packaging is the first thing that hit me. Next, pulling out the camera, I was instantly struck by how this thing felt. My biggest beef with any of the other small cameras that I have tried is that they don't feel like a camera. They always feel like a piece of cheap plastic. Well, this is certainly not the case with the Fuji.
The weight is nice and the metal construction even nicer. Love the assortment of dials that are actually dials. They have indents that make them work like dials should work. Yep. No accidentally hitting the record button or flipping the camera into some random mode simply because you bumped a dial. Yes, instantly I knew I was going to like this little guy. Who knows what kind of pictures it would take, but it certainly passed the 'how does it feel' test.
The next step was to see if I could shoot the camera without reading the manual. The next morning, battery fully charged, I set about setting things up. While the exterior of the x100 is certainly retro, the inside is modern day digital. I had heard much about Fujisawa menus I clouding their Q button, so it was relatively easy for me to get things set up the way I like them.
I selected A mode on the top dial; put the camera into Raw+ JPeg mode; set the file sizes and changed the color space. With those items set I knew I could go about shooting and figure out the rest as time allowed. After all, I have a week before the Lost Coast Bikepacking trip which means plenty of time to sort it all out.
My first shooting experience was the rising sun over the harbor. I shot a couple of pics in Velvia (yes, that would be Fujisawa digital version of their much loved Velvia film). Figuring out how to switch film modes was a breeze and before I knew it I was bouncing between Velvia and B&W. starting with the little Nikon V1, I have been experimenting with shooting B&W straight out of the camera in an attempt to minimize computer time.
Sorting this out on the Fuji was a breeze and I was instantly having a blast. The first real thing that struck me was the camera was not in my way. I was simply shooting, focusing through the optical VF and taking pictures. Yes, their are lots of bells and whistles and tons of different ways to configure the camera. Yes it will take me time to sort out how to move about quickly within the menus, but by and large, I was up and running in a matter of moments. I absolutely love when that happens.
The mosquito hatch was huge and thus the shooting came to a rapid close. I dumped the images and was very impressed with what I saw. My very initial thought – all of the buzz surrounding this little camera might actually be true.