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10.02.2020 Knut Koivisto

PEAK: Knut Koivisto x XF50mmF1.0 R WR

Knut Koivisto

Knut Koivisto is one of Sweden's most respected portrait photographers, who moves effortlessly between the worlds of entertainment and business. His style is to create a pared-down image, with the focus firmly on the person. He has a humanist world view and always cherishes the individual. He combines figures from cinema and portraits of Sweden's biggest actors with the cream of Swedish business. He also teaches and gives lectures. He works on his own personal projects and is one of the leading lights of the new social media. "I think the most important thing, whatever the title or position of the person being photographed, is to go straight to the heart of the person, without getting hung up on effects or gimmicks. It takes a while to learn that. To ignore the thought that this is a CEO or a big movie star like Mikael Persbrandt or a nurse. They all deserve the same respect and should be treated like human beings. That's how you create the magic, together. Because if you work with people, it's always about teamwork."

Do you believe in magic? I do! Or how would you otherwise describe the art of photography? Have we in these modern times forgotten the wonder of the first photographs and the surprise it stirred up. Perhaps the moment you as a kid saw your first image develop in the tray in the subdued light of the darkroom and you felt the proud feeling, this is my image. Do you remember the first time you were holding a camera in your hand and the thought went through your mind, I want to be a photographer.

For me these ideas are still very much alive. There isn’t a single day that goes by without a thought on photography. I still remember my Father and my Mother picking up the family camera on special occasions to make a picture that then became a memory. I still remember as a young kid looking through piles of photographs that where later going into albums.

Through all the years that has passed since then I’m so grateful for those pictures. My parents as young. My grandparents that I hardly remember are there, still in their bloom of life. Me and my siblings trying to stand still for the camera. There’s one image that I found only a couple of years ago, that still surprises me. It’s me at the age of three in a family picture holding a camera and taking a picture, apparently of the photographer. Photography is the art of freezing time, to passing on memories. The art of telling stories and the art of expressing yourself. It is the art of magic.

As you grow as a photographer, your awarenesses of your tools grow as your demands and expectations also will. Your aim for greatnesses and perfection in the pictures you photograph grow, and equally your requirements on your gear increase. Maybe you photograph as a hobby or you’re a professional photographer, it doesn’t matter you will still want to have the best possible tools.

The FUJINON 50mmF1.0 lens is as extreme as they get! The F1.0 doesn’t just stand for a maximum aperture and a super thin depth of field, it could also stand for Formula 1 as in the racing cars. The FUJINON 50mmF1.0 is the pinnacle of ultimate camera lens design and it will demand the ultimate of your cameras. Making a working autofocus for a F1.0 lens is unheard of, it’s the only one of it’s kind that I know of. When I use this lens the autofocus is as fast as all my other FUJINON lenses, and I like to shoot wide open at F1.0!

Not only does the lens push your cameras to the ultimate limits, it also pushes you as a photographer to yours. You will have to rethink how you photograph, how you frame your subjects and how your foregrounds and backgrounds are composed. You are challenged to perform at your outmost and that’s what I love about the FUJINON 50mmF1.0. If you are up for it, the lens will deliver magic!

When you pick up the lens it’s no small object. It has its weight and it has its volume, but it’s when you attach it to your camera and look through the viewfinder you fall in love and feel the urge to create beautiful images. I know I did! I immediately started to plan new portraits and I wanted to try new ways to make my images. My imagination was rejuvenated.

My first thought was wondering how fast and accurate the autofocus would be, knowing that focus at F1.0 is utterly critical and crucial. I was astonished, it was both as exact and fast as I’m used to with my FUJINON lenses. Next step was to test lowlight conditions and the lens just continued to deliver sharp images at the same fast pace I’m used to. The FUJINON 50mmF1.0 can literally see in the dark. You don’t need much light to make a photograph. As a matter of fact F1.0 can gather more light than the human eye.

Wanting to shoot as much as possible at F1.0 I could literally shoot under any low light conditions that I could find. When using my flash kit I just switched off the flash function and used the LED modeling lights and outdoors I turned on the electronic shutter or just put on a ND filter on the lens. I just loved the way I could freely be creative with the lens and that I could focus on the fun part of photographing without having to limit myself.

I was a little surprised how fast I got accustomed to it. The ease to use it without any interference with my contact with my model and letting me get really close without being intimidating. All the time I’m in control. The FUJINON 50mm F1.0 is here to stay with me!

I can easily see that it will be a dream lens for both Portrait and Wedding photographers. They will argue who’s most benefitted by its advantages! The shallow depth of field that isolates your subject from the background and gives a both dreamy and 3D effect to your images, it’s an answer to our prayers. I also think it will be a wonderful complement to your kit if you shoot Lifestyle or Reportage. I even think photographers who shoot Architecture and Landscape can find new ways of making unexpected images. The contribution of the lens will open up new possibilities.

In the heart of it all lies the lust and fun to make photographs. No matter if you do it for your own pleasure or as a commission, you most likely will want to express yourself as an artist. You will want to see things in a new way and to be challenged to create images that make an impact. So that they become future memories and statements. I know I want to! That’s the magic of Photography!