Reportage

Posts Tagged ‘Fuji’

Funfair Comes To Town – Luang Prabang, Laos

In Ethics, Workshop News on July 16, 2012 at 8:09 AM

 © Photograph by Gary Jones. In pursuit of a prize. Novice monks with air rifles at Luang Prabang Funfair.

The Jack Picone and Stephen Dupont Documentary Photography workshops participant Gary Jones documents a small funfair that arrives to town. Luang Prabang, Laos. View here:

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FUJIFILM Discusses Photography & The X-Pro1 With Jack Picone

In Photography News on June 15, 2012 at 4:17 AM

Jack Picone, world renowned Photojournalist & Documentary Photographer talks to FUJIFILM about his work with the X-Pro1 & X100. View here:

Our next workshop is in Luang Prabang, Laos 9th July – 14th July 2012

In Workshop News on May 9, 2012 at 1:11 PM

 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            ©  Photograph by Patrick Brown

(Above) Participants from our last workshop in Luang Prabang (2006) view their images during our evening projections.

 

About Laos

Award-winning documentary photographer  Jack Picone will work in tandem with workshop partner Stephen Dupont, acclaimed photojournalist and filmmaker. Both Steve and Jack along with guest tutor Ed Giles renowned for his multimedia productions, will be there to critique and edit participants work one-on-one, and also take part in evening projections and discussions.

An introductory get-together will be held on the evening prior to the workshop’s formal start in Luang Prabang. Like any working documentary photographer, participants will be given an assignment brief to interpret as they wish. (The brief will be announced prior to the workshop to give participants time to research possible subjects before they arrive.)

The aim is to produce a documentary photo essay with a striking visual narrative, to be shown on the final evening of the workshop. Tutors will hold individual and group sessions to supervise and edit the assignments, and dialogue intensively on topics such as photographic composition, portraiture, basic camera techniques, how to research ideas and tell an original story, how to market a body of work, and how to hone your personal style. The workshop is very project based as opposed to technically driven.

The workshop’s schedule will be demanding but highly rewarding. Tutors and field assistants will be on hand constantly to help navigate any areas of difficulty and discuss all participants photographic concerns. Interpreters can also be arranged where necessary.

Traditional Photo Essay and Multimedia

During the workshops participants will have an option to produce a completed photo essay within documentary tradition or in a more contemporary context – a multimedia. In both cases, tutors will be on hand to guide you through the respective process.

Cost: US$2,500. Includes all workshop sessions. Workshop cost does not include travel costs to Laos and accommodation. A US$500 (non-refundable) deposit secures a place on the workshop.

Application: The workshop is strictly limited to 15 participants. This is one of our most popular workshops so book early to avoid disappointment.

For enquires email Jack:   jack@jackpicone.com

I AM NOT A DSLR – I AM DIFFERENT – I AM A FUJIFILM / X – PRO 1

In Photography News, Street Photography on April 23, 2012 at 8:41 AM

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I am on the Star Ferry shooting pictures at twilight while crossing Hong Kong Harbour. The sun retreated hastily and out rolled a piercing black and blue sky. Iridescent. I love this time. I love this light. A time where day transitions to night and just for a fleeting moment – it is neither. It is exciting and ambiguous. Given the consternation concerning the performance of the auto-focus of its predecessor, the x/100, I was keen to test the X Pro 1’s focusing ability.  As a photographer you are aware that you need to work in nano-seconds because light and color is on the wane and what is so beautiful now, soon will vanish. So I did work fast, two of the authored images are in this short slide show (click on post heading to see images larger if you like) above. One is the Asian girl wearing a faux polar bear head (hat) and the other is a picture where I focused on a thick translucent plastic sheet rendering a cruise liner that it framed, soft and dream like in the background. The ferry pitched from side to side in challenging low-light conditions and I took a score or two of images during the crossing from Kowloon to Hong Kong. The X-Pro 1 did not miss a beat in terms of responsiveness and the auto-focus locking onto the subject. This performance was repeated with several early morning walks photographing Hong Kong waking up to a new day as well. During my early morning wanderings I purposely sought out scenarios to make images that involved shooting through glass, against highly reflective surfaces, in shadow zones and at times in low light. This is apparent in the image of tea being poured by a waitress, shot through a heavily steamed coated window. Again, the camera did not miss a beat. It was smooth and seamless with the autofocus doing what I expect autofocus to do – focus accurately in minimal time. None of this searching searching – help me – I am lost! No whirring in and out. It focused with conviction. Similarly to the X/100, I suggest that one of the great advantages of this camera is its classically beautiful and understated retro-design. It is not (although often wanted to be) a high end DSLR. I am personally very happy that it is not a DSLR.

Said objectively, the Hong Kong Chinese are known to be just a little (it is infinitesimal really) gruff about having their picture taken but I did not encounter any negative reaction to working on the streets with this camera, in fact I was completely ignored. This camera is not great for your ego I am afraid. Get used to being ignored. If you want to make a statement swinging a house brick DSLR around your neck that in turn broadcasts that you are a photographer then this camera is probably not for you. And this is where we get to the core of what the X- Pro 1’s psychological advantage is. Because it does not solicit the unwanted reaction that comes with shooting pictures with a DSLR, I am left to document people in original moments. Sounds like visual small change but for me this is super significant in terms of access and time that otherwise may be stunted or stymied by using a DSLR.  When I am on the street with the X PRO 1 I feel a synchronicity similar to that I have enjoyed when shooting black and white film with my Leica M6. Both cameras feel like a natural extension of me. Specifically, the X PRO 1 allows me to arrive at the creative conclusion, I want.

So the proceeding is what I think is attractive and important about the X-PRO1 but there are a few fixes that Fuji could consider in their continuing evolution of this ground-breaking camera. None of the following are hugely significant and nor did they compromise me while shooting pictures on this weekend in Hong Kong. It is more about a little fine-tuning needed.

They are:

  1. The exposure compensation dial can still be in inadvertently moved to +1 or -1, -2 Stops (or similar) this needs a locking mechanism.
  2. The Q button is easily activated when not wanted. Again, this needs a rethink in terms of design. As with the exposure compensation dial above this seems to happen by simply diving into my shoulder camera bag to retrieve the camera.
  3. The clicking chatter sound as the aperture blades automatically adjust during exposure would benefit in being less audible.
  4. The 60mm F2.4 lens appears to search significantly while focusing and  in general takes longer to achieve focus.

In conclusion, similarly to the x/100, the X – Pro 1 is a result of a forward thinking Fujifilm company who have displayed significant creative courage in bringing this camera to photographers.  The things that make this an advant garde and ground – breaking camera far outweigh the few minor fixes (cited above) that need to be made. Within this context a suggestion I do have for Fuji is; instead of going the compact camera route of sales thinking/marketing i.e. pack as many features as possible into a smallish camera in an effort to be competitive in selling as many cameras to as many people as possible, perhaps this could be rethought with the idea of  reducing the X-Pro 1’s many features? Thereby edging the X-Pro 1 closer to a digital version of a Leica M4, M6 or a Voigtlander Bessa R2A. This I suggest, would be enormously attractive to professional and serious amateur photographers alike. Simplicity is still a much sought after desire. Just a thought?

The fact that Fuji have brought this hybrid camera to us from inception to reality in such a short window of time is extraordinary.

Something tells me that Leica must feel like they have had their cage rattled a little?

Fujifilm have a habit of wooing us and thrilling us. Hang on for the fast ride it is only going to get better from here.

Vang Vieng Laos

In Photography News on April 15, 2012 at 2:24 PM

Compelling Report by Writer, Abigail Haworth.
Photographs by Palani Mohan

Vang Vieng, deep in the jungle of Laos, is a backpacker paradise where there are no rules. Last year at least 27 travellers died there, and countless more were injured.   Read Here

Taking the X/100 for a walk

In Random Moments, Street Photography on April 30, 2011 at 4:08 AM

Forget about the tedium of pixels and megabytes, other then to say, the X/100 has sufficient and high enough quality of both.

Let’s talk about making pictures.

What is great about this camera is the psychology of it. Shooting on the street and amongst an increasingly neurotic (about being photographed) Australian public-is that nobody cares. It is a great advantage in being able to document people as they are, instead of them reacting to a photographer with a ‘house brick’ DSLR.
The images it produces are incredibly sharp even at F2. Noise does not even get on the radar to after iso1600. Time lag on releasing the shutter is minimal, if not at all. Too many features to mention but if I can sneak one in-the Panorama is a lot of fun.

I think it is a great second camera for professionals or a great camera-period-for anyone who loves making pictures.
It is not a compact and not a DSLR it fills the void between both.
There always was a high end small film camera that serious photographers could take with them anywhere even when they were not on assignment. A decade and more after the tidal wave of digital photography, swamping film photography, Fuji has provided the digital version of that camera. It comes in a beautiful and classic retro package with superb build quality.
It has been a long time coming but has arrived.
Firmware needs a serious update, it is quite idiosyncratic but that is a minor minor. It is a camera that takes a while to get to know but once you do know it, you will be very happy that you did meet.
This is the thinking photographers camera.
I will be back with more.
In the meantime here are a few random images made with the X/100 while walking around Surfer’s Paradise….
Jack
All Photographs © Jack Picone

X/100 Panorama Mode

In Photography News, Random Moments on April 24, 2011 at 3:04 AM

Self portrait taken in Panorama Mode on the X/100. Just press the button and it sweeps 120 degrees. No stitching needed, the camera does it for you. Too clever. Lots of fun! © Photograph by Jack Picone

X/100

In Photography News on April 8, 2011 at 10:29 PM

Fuji have given me their latest inspired piece of thinking the X/100-well to give my thoughts on.

I feel privileged.

Fuji are different.

Clearly they can’t compete on the same level as the mega giants like Canon, Nikon and the other big boys.

But every ten years or so in a stealth like way, they appear on the horizon with a camera that clearly eclipses the competition. The last one was Fuji TX-1 Panorama film camera. A superb camera.

My initial reaction on ‘taking this camera for a walk’ and seeing the images that it delivers, is one of unbrilded and unfeted excitement.

Seemingly, the X/100 is the nexus between style and substance.

Niether a flawed compact, nor a ‘house brick’ DSLR it is simply unto itself.

Already, I feel (for me) it is filling a void that has long been present since the introduction of digital cameras.

As I experience more with this camera I will be back with some images and my thoughts.

Jack