30 Days with the Fuji X-Pro3: Day 7

Forgot to post yesterday…whoops! Gonna post twice today to make up for it

In some ways, it’s fortunate that I forgot to post yesterday because this image and the image I posted earlier fit really nicely together. Both of them have that perfect “I’m a hipster film shooter who obsessively hunts fluorescent signs and old buildings” vibe. Hopefully they won’t hate on me for shooting their subjects with a digital camera…I figure if I’m going to steal their subjects with a digital camera, the X-Pro3 is the camera to do it with, right? It’s got that retro look and build, plus I’m shooting on Classic Neg and that’s supposed to emulate the Fuji Superia film stock…I think I’m in the clear…

Jokes aside, I did shoot this image (and the one I posted earlier) with something of a film mindset. I’ve noticed that when I shoot film, I stay more present. As long as I’ve been shooting film consistently and don’t get taken out of the moment to worry about exposure and silly things like which way I’m supposed to rotate the shutter speed dial to increase/decrease exposure I stay connected to the world much better in between photos. With digital, there’s the obvious urge to chimp in between photos to double check exposure and focus at 100% zoom. And especially with mirrorless cameras, the live view acts as another element that removes you from reality: you’re not looking at the world, but rather the camera’s translation of the world to a photo. These aren’t necessarily bad things…it’s just that there’s a time and a place for them.

With this photo shoot, I took advantage of two of the wonderful film-esque features of the Fuji X-Pro3. I didn’t look at the images in between shots (aided by the oh-so-controversial screen that is folded shut by default — it’s a little silly, but it’s a great anti-chimp guard) and I used the optical viewfinder rather than the electronic one that I usually use. I’m not sure that this created better or worse photos, but I did feel more connected to the world and honestly enjoyed the shooting experience more than usual.

This approach also had the unexpected benefit of me being pleasantly surprised by how well Classic Neg was rendering the colors in many of the images. I did some slight edits on these in Capture One, but for the most part I just let Classic Neg do its thing. And much like getting film scans back from the lab, there was a certain joy to the surprise of seeing how the images came out.

It’s easy to discount some of the elements of the X-Pro3 like the screen and optical viewfinder as gimmicks or old fashioned/outdated features, but it’s impossible to deny that they nudge you in the direction of “pure photography” like they advertise.

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