We all live in the same world but we all see it differently. Sights and sounds effect us all differently too. We create things in order to explain how we feel, to explain our reactions as the world goes around us. Some people sing, some people draw, some people dance and some people create images. Those who uses cameras are called photographers.
When I think of photography, I am pretty sure I do so in a different way to you. When you look at an image, you take away something different to me. The next person that comes along will see something different again – this is the way it always has been and the way it always should be.
As photographers we develop a bond with our images – for they are windows into the past for other people to see what we saw. It should come as no surprise that the cameras we use to create these moments become more than just black boxes, they become part of the story too.
The first time I used the XPro, I knew I loved it. I loved the look and the style – back then I wanted a camera that looked good. I was fed up of not having a cool camera to use. I didn't want to be that photographer who used their iPhone when out and about and I still don't for that matter. I remember wanting a camera to take on a few trips I had planned to North Africa, Washington & New York. It was very important for me at the time to be able to document the trip. The X100 was out at the time but, I really liked the idea of being able to take the 3 lenses that came with the XPro at the time. There was the 18mm the 60mm and the lens I still use every day, to this very day – the 35mm f1.4. As pretty much all photographers did back then, I over packed. I took a D800 set up & a spare body, then a whole extra bag of lenses had been arranged and shipped across ahead of me. Personally I thought I would never use the Fuji aside from on the plane or out and about – snaps here or there. It turned out it that to this very day – I use my cameras every day – for work and pleasure. The thing is – it was not the image quality that did anything – it was the form of the body. The camera style changed the way I shot. It let me relax and have fun.
The next few years passed. I was shooting with the Fuji XPro1, then mixing it up with the XT1 from time to time. The XT1 is a stunning camera but, it's not an XPro camera. I remember when the XT1 came out, I remember when I first held it & I remember thinking... 'I really like this camera, but I love my XPro1'. I used my d800 along with my Fuji cameras side by side up until I met up with Richard Wan outside a train station, he handed me a black box with an XPro2 inside. Since then I have only used the XPro2. My Nikon camera has not taken a single frame since October.
The changes from the XPro1 to the XPro2 are in some ways subtle. This is not a new camera & in many ways quite similar from the outside at least. The shooting style is the same but now is much easy to fully operate the camera one handed. Everything happens with just the right amount of style and feedback. The speed of this camera is now at the level that it is tune with the instinctive movements of a photographer. The EVF & hybrid viewfinder is a stunning display of a technical development aiding the creative mind. ISO & focus systems are now at level when you can also most forget them as a worry. Shooting at 5000iso was something I would have only ever done in emergency's 5 years ago, but it was just a few days ago while shooting a live band that I actually choose this setting for the visual look of the image.
At the heart of the XPro2, there is the same idea as with the X-Pro1 and all XSeries for that matter, it seems to me that Fujifilm have wanted to empower the photographer – not create a barrier into the process of image making. The XPro2 is a continuation of this process giving even more range & scope for a working professional to have a small lightweight system that can deliver for all needs. In so many ways this new camera is a step forward – but I love the links and ties with the heritage of the past too. In Fujifilm, many people like me have found a company that is not a faceless brand. Maybe it is the UK team that is part of that, but, when you speak to photographers all over the world there is something more – shooting Fuji can make you feel good – I have no idea what that extra magic is, I really don't – but maybe that is why it's magic.
A few years ago Ideas and Images were set up to offer Fashion based Portraiture to a wide range of clients and customers. Dave Kai Piper has written for a wide range of blogs and magazines about photography and post processing