After months of drought-inducing conditions, some welcome rain has fallen in the past fortnight. The unsettled weather has brought hail, thunder and lightning and some dramatic skies. A good moment, then, to head to the countryside.
Since purchasing the Fuji X-Pro1 last month, I’ve been shooting urban scenes exclusively so I was keen to use it in a landscape context. So I hopped in the car and drove down the coast to the Isle of Grain, a familiar place. It turned out to be a something of a ‘smash and grab’ photography expedition, driving around the peninsula and alighting here and there with the camera.
It was a fresh spring day, warm in the sunshine and cool in shade. When I stopped to take pictures, I left the tripod in the boot and worked hand-held. To my surprise, I find myself favouring the EVF (electronic viewfinder) in most situations because of its precise framing and through-the-lens view (no parallax). Many of the scenes were contrasty so I was careful not to overexpose, often using 2/3-1/3 negative compensation. The immediate access to this dial is one of the joys of the camera – direct control and no menu navigation required.
Yesterday I discovered a new technique – shooting from the car! I don’t think I’ll be using this method too much but you never know when a ‘hit and run’ shot might work. It’s a little easier in a convertible (with the top down) as you can see the scene much more clearly. 10/10 for laziness, then, but here’s one taken from the driver’s seat.
There are some fine views of the Thames Estuary from Grain’s northern shore and I found a new prospect yesterday by exploring an obscure lane. A tripod and a longer lens are required to capture these scenes properly, though, so I’ve made a mental note to return.
Working with completely neutral in-camera settings (and still shooting jpeg), I find the Fuji’s colour and contrast rendition to be quite conservative. Therefore, I usually push these values in Lightroom to produce more arresting images. The white balance has been exceptionally accurate in varied conditions, something the X-Pro1 seems to have inherited from the X100’s credentials in this area. RAW support is in development by Adobe so the wait should not be too much longer.