The bride stripped bare

It was the title of an album from 1978 by Bryan Ferry and for some reason ‘the bride stripped bare’ seemed like an appropriate title for this blog featuring some of my black and white bridal photographs.  So apologies if you were expecting bridal boudoir photos or something similar. That blog will have to wait until I’ve had the opportunity to take some!

So here you have a few beautiful brides with the colour removed.  I have to say that I really like to use black and white as part of the wedding portfolio. I think it really works for documentary type shots and the portraits look good printed, framed and displayed.
These shots were all taken on Fuji X-Series cameras including the X100, X-E1 and X-Pro1.
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The Fuji 10-24mm – one month review

I’ve had my new Fuji 10-24mm lens for a month now and I thought I’d share a few thoughts and pictures with you.  The lens is quite chunky and heavy by Fuji XF standards but still nowhere near as bulky as the Nikon 16-35mm f4 lens that I sold to fund this purchase.  And am I glad I made the swop? Well the answer is a definite yes – not because of any huge gains in image quality but simply because I’m using the lens more that I was the Nikon.  Essentially that’s because the Fuji X-Series is more luggable.

I’ve chosen a few photos below from my first month, including shots from a beach holiday in Cornwall (the subject of an earlier post), a visit to the beautiful Lake District in the North West of the UK and also a shot or two from my hometown of Preston.

All the shots here were shot in RAW and then converted in Lightroom.  I’m still not convinced I’ve really got the most out of the lens yet and I’ve read some comments about in-camera jpegs being the way to go for the best results with this lens.  That’s an option I’ll certainly be trying.

I’m no pixel peeper so I couldn’t tell you if this lens is as good as others when you enlarge the image by 500 percent or whatever. If you want the ultimate quality for advertising or the like then you have plenty of options.  I can’t imagine any situation where the quality of these images will let me down unless it’s due to user error.

One thing of note is that for some of these shots a polarising filter was fitted. I found the effect to be a bit hit and miss with coverage across the frame to be quite inconsistent. No fault of the lens but I am wondering whether it’s worth bothering with the filter at all given that the results without the filter are pretty damned good anyway.

By all accounts the image stabilisation is pretty good on this lens too.  I’ve only had a couple of occasions to test this out and I have to say it’s been impressive.

So, all in all this is another great Fuji lens which I will be using a lot.


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Fuji 60mm is almost perfect for flowers

Earlier this week I discovered a new place to visit in the Lake District. It was one of those moments when you think, I can’t believe I’ve never been here before.  Holehird Gardens is the home of the Lakeland Horticultural Society and it has to be one of the best kept gardens in the North of England.
I’m no gardener but you don’t have to be to appreciate the masses of different flowers and plants on display, all lovingly looked after by the society’s members.
The gardens are located on a hillside overlooking Lake Windermere so you also get great views and a pretty little tarn to walk around too. This is one visitor attraction I will be returning to time and time again.
Here are a few photographs from the gardens.  These pictures were taken on the Fuji 60mm which was almost perfect for the close-up flower shots. The lens is super sharp and the only weakness of the lens is the auto-focus capability in close-up mode which is difficult to nail even when switching to manual mode and using the back focus button. The time delay when using the actual focus ring on the lens is also frustrating but these are small niggles and I’m happy with the photos I got from these wonderful gardens.
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The Fuji X-Series and a trip to Cornwall

We have just got back from a week away in St Ives. It’s one of my favourite places to visit in the UK and when you get the weather it’s just about perfect.

St Ives is blessed with some fantastic beaches, which essentially surround the small fishing town. The harbour area is the bustling focal point of St Ives with its shops, restaurants, cafés and traditional old pub – The Sloop Inn.
The tables outside the pub face the harbour and it’s a great spot for people watching. On elf the first things I do when I arrive in St Ives is order a pint of Doombar, sit back and just relax. The atmosphere is unique. Local fishermen mix with tourists and conversations play out against a background soundtrack of waves gently lapping on the shore and the shrill sound of seagulls. The only sound more shrill than the gulls is the screams of newbie tourists losing their newly purchased ice-creams and pasties to the swooping airborne aggressors.
Here are a few photos from this year’s visit.  The pictures here were taken on the Fuji X-Pro1with mainly the new 10-24mm f4 and the X-E1 with the 55-200mm attached. The reason for the two bodies was that it enabled me to cover a wide range of shots without changing lenses in what can be a fairly dusty environment with all that sand swirling around.
I love the 55-200mm lens and use it a lot but it’s still early days for me with the 10-24mm and I will review that lens in more detail when I get some more shots.  If you have this lens let me know how you are finding it – would love to hear.
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