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4 minute read

The Intimacy of a Moment

Nina Robinson reveals how she uses photography to explore the personality of her subjects and how FUJINON XF50mmF1.0 R WR mid-telephoto prime lens has added to this process

The most powerful photographs are the ones that take you closer. Closer in the sense that they immerse you in the intimacy of a moment and, in turn, trigger emotion. This could come in many different forms: joy, sorrow, love, hate, peace, terror, empathy, anger… The list goes on. Regardless of the outcome, the art of telling compelling stories through photography hangs around this ability to transport the viewer to a different place, if only for just a second.

Nina Robinson has been using photography to explore some extremely intimate subjects and, in doing so, she has been able to develop the art of image making into a tool for healing. 

Photo © Nina Robinson | FUJIFILM X-T4 camera and XF50mmF1.0 R WR lens, 1/1000 sec at F1.0, ISO 640

“For the last six years, I have been deepening my focus on memory, family, death, and reflection – how they live in the world and what they might look like to each of us,” says Nina.

“In 2015 I developed an innovative phototherapy program with senior citizens at William Hodson Community Center in the Bronx. Through the use of photography, older residents were able to openly explore personal and social issues,” she continues.

These social workshops are now available across the USA – a result of her commitment to using photography to help expand knowledge, build relationships, and diversify visual narratives within communities.

Photo © Nina Robinson | FUJIFILM X-T4 camera and XF50mmF1.0 R WR lens, 1/1000 sec at F1.3, ISO 640

A huge part of being able to convey such raw emotion in an image is to ensure a moment is documented, but not disturbed. This was a big reason why Nina began using the unimposing FUJIFILM X Series mirrorless system. “I enjoy the compact size, it fits perfectly in my hands and reminds me of my very first camera. But what I love most is the electronic shutter mode, which has helped me tremendously as I frame intimate and sensitive moments.”

Nina’s process of finding these images revolves around the relationship she has built with her subject through conversation and companionship. “Sometimes during my photo sessions, I have three words I meditate on. These words come from thoughts that occur and conversations I’ve had with the person who’s in front of my lens,” she reveals. And this was a technique she employed for her latest project using XF50mmF1.0 R WR.

In her downtime between editorial photography assignments, Nina buys and sells vintage clothing through her online store, Darling Louise, and wanted to create some images of two of the newest additions to her collection. For Nina, they are so much more than just items of clothing, so she needed a tool that could properly convey the significance – and XF50mmF1.0, paired with FUJIFILM X-T4, was the perfect combination.

Photo © Nina Robinson | FUJIFILM X-T4 camera and XF50mmF1.0 R WR lens, 1/1000 sec at F1.3, ISO 640

“Just like my photographs, for me, each vintage piece I buy tells its own story. Darling Louise is not just a platform for selling clothing, but a way to tell a story through the garments and the people who wear and cherish these vintage finds,” she explains.

But it wasn’t just the personality of the clothes that Nina wanted to portray, it was also the personality of her model, Nate; a fellow photographer and lover of vintage style. “Nate found out that I am a collector of vintage and tried a few pieces on. The powder blue lace dress and the red dress fit them perfectly,” she tells us, continuing to explain the techniques she used to reveal that all-important intimacy.

“Our photoshoot was organic, collaborative. Like with everyone I photograph, I wanted Nate to be themselves, feel comfortable in front of me as well as with what they were wearing. Delicate, quiet, movement… These themes came to mind when photographing Nate by the water.” 

XF50mmF1.0’s enormous F1.0 aperture and high-quality construction meant that, when paired with Nina’s X-T4, the result was a tool that allowed her to perfectly focus her story. It allowed her to ensure that her subject was fantastically sharp, that her background was filled with irresistible bokeh, and that the separation between the two was spectacular.

“The sharpness and depth-of-field was some of the best I’ve experienced with an X Series lens. Using it with X-T4, it felt as if I was getting the very best images possible out of the X Series giving me outstanding professional results,” she tells us, going on to praise its ability to reproduce color. “The lens performed great for the portraits I wanted to create, especially in regard to the nuance and richness in which it captures color. It felt like a solid and dependable lens that I could rely on for professional results.”

Photo © Nina Robinson | FUJIFILM X-T4 camera and XF50mmF1.0 R WR lens, 1/1000 sec at F1.0, ISO 640

Nina finishes with a strong recommendation to any portrait photographers out there looking for the perfect combination of performance and durability.

“I’d recommend it to anyone who specializes in portraiture, especially those who are outside of a studio and need a reliable and weatherproof lens.

“I feel I can rely on it for professional results, especially in moments where color and sharpness are priority.”

FUJINON XF50mmF1.0 R WR is now available your nearest FUJIFILM Authorized Dealer. Learn more and read the full specifications here.


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