'X' Marks the Spot:: Fujifilm X-Photographer
It all started in December of 2011. I bought the Fujifilm X100 camera. And the reason I bought it was because it was so damn cool looking. That's about it..... oh, and it made some really amazing images. I could not believe I was cheating on my beloved Canon 5D2.. but I was and I was lovin' every minute of it.
Fast forward several months to April 2012. >>> After reading everything ever written about the newly released Fuji X-Pro1 I decided I would be buying the full kit and selling my Canon. I ordered everything new from the store and I bought the X-Pro1, grip, 2 batteries, XF 35mm, XF18mm & XF 60mm. I brought it home and felt like it was my birthday. I threw a battery in the charger as I opened everything up. I was amazed at the feel and the build quality of the lenses and the body itself. I knew the X100 was very solid and well built so it shouldn't of been a surprise to me, but it was. The satisfying click of the aperture ring on the lenses. The sleek black body. The feel of actual metal on a camera body. I was in G.A.S heaven.
That is.. until I started taking shots around the house. The auto focus seemed worse than the X100 which did not have the greatest AF at the time. Adobe Lightroom couldn't process the RAW files of the new X-Trans sensor. My feet were cold.. oh so very, very cold. The next day I packed everything up so it looked brand new again and I returned it to the store. It was not meant to be. I was scared of not having a dSLR on my upcoming trip to Maui. I took my new Canon 5D3 and the X100 to Maui. During the trip I opted for the lighter X100 75% of the time. It was so easy to take it with me not feel weighed down. I came home with some great shots made with the X100.
Ever since returning the X-Pro1 to the store I had not stopped thinking about buying into the smaller interchangeable lens system. I closely followed fujirumors.com and read the new firmware reviews with my finger on the trigger waiting to take the plunge again.
January 2013. The X100s is announced. I pre-ordered that as soon as I could and sold my beloved X100 to a new home where it could run free.. er.. continue to make photos. It was a long wait until I got the call sometime in March to pick it up. It had the same great looks and feel but with the 16mp X-Trans sensor and amazing auto focus. Fuji listened to everyone who complained about the X100. It became my perfect go-anywhere camera.
I tried my darnedest to secure a borrowed X-Pro1 for a trip to New York City to no avail. It is crazy that people refuse to lend their beloved cameras to an internet stranger to take out of the country on a trip. What I did find was a fellow Canadian selling a X-Pro1, XF18mm, XF35mm & XF60mm for a great price. He told me the system just wasn't for him. I snapped that up as fast as I could type. It was in immaculate condition. I sold the XF18 & XF60 to get the brand new XF14 and off to NYC I went.
It was on the streets of Gotham where I really fell in love with the whole system. I was ready to sell any other camera out there. All I used in the most photographed city in the world were my Xs. It was the kind of week that really turned around where my photography was going & really set a new standard for me with my work. During that week I received a tweet from Billy of the Fuji Guys asking if we could have a conversation when I returned to Canada. Initially I was worried that I was in trouble for saying something on Twitter.. I don't know what. During our call, Billy explained the Fuji X-Photographer program and asked me if I was interested in joining. I think I might of said "Yes" before he finished asking the question.
So what is a Fuji X-Photographer? When I have mentioned it to people they think I am saying ex-photographer and ask me "What made you quit photography?"
The Fuji X-Photographer program is a group of photographers who use the Fuji X-Series cameras (X100, X100s, X-Pro1, X-E1...) and are able to represent the brand and get it out there to the unknowing. Now, I am not a shill for Fuji. Nor do they want me to be. They want me to tell them what I like and what I don't like about something and I have and will continue to. I have provided them with photographs I have made with the cameras to use on their global website to promote the camera as real world sample images. I will give them my opinion on current and new products as they relate to me and how I work and I will write about it on my blog.
In return they will allow me to borrow equipment to try out in order to have an opinion on the equipment and I may get my hands on new products before they are available in stores. In my eyes it is a pretty great relationship. I have my photos out there and I get to use other people's photo gear!
Each Fujifilm region selects their own X-Photographers. There are 6 other X-Photographers in Canada and they are a great bunch. Worldwide there are about 155 X-Photographers including the likes of Bert Stephani, Zack Arias & David Hobby to name a few. I am in very good company that I am so proud to be a part of. It is a very exciting time for me photographically now that I have a vision that I am following with where I want to be.
Definitely bookmark this blog if you have an interest in the Fuji X-Series or in my photography. And be sure to check out my various photographic homes on the interweb.