I enjoy returning to Blackwater Falls in West Virginia and finding that little has changed. Since I usually end up taking the same pictures whenever I return, I decided that I would try to make some different images of the falls this year. If you search my blog you will find previous pictures that I made, some in the fall as well as other times of the year. Since the access is restricted to a few walkways with specific viewing areas, it is hard to get different viewpoints.
For those who wish to travel with a lightweight camera setup, note that all images were made with the Fujifilm X-T1 camera with a 27 mm pancake lens from two locations. Since I don’t do steps as well anymore, I didn’t even go down to the lowest viewing area.
I have been working with the model railroaders as we get the various layouts ready for the holidays. I have started thinking about lighting, camera and lens settings, etc. and after the layouts are completed I hope to spend some time making pictures of some of the details.
At the same time I have been reducing my cameras and lenses, and before I take the next step I wanted to see how well the Fujifilm X-T1 and the 27 mm lens worked for the layouts. I had not used this camera and lens before in this manner so I wanted to try it before I made anymore reduction decisions. It worked just fine. I am one more step closer to using only one camera.
I am going to try a 60 mm macro lens for my Fujifilm X-T1 camera to see if I can get up closer and make detail images. While I am waiting to get it and try it, I decided to see how well I could resize my X-file raw images. Since I had the following picture of the wild flower taken at f/2.8 with the 27 mm lens, I used it for an experiment.
The image is a 4896 x 3264 pixel raw file that has been processed in LR6. I cropped the above image to capture a small image of the flower in the middle. The resulting crop was only 1005 x 670 pixels. I then resized it up with Perfect Resize 8 plugin to my standard blog image size which is 2000 pixels on the longest edge. I am impressed with the quality of the resized image.
I can hardly wait until I get some images with the 60 mm macro. My desire is to make abstract images from sections of flowers, etc. as well as use it for photographing events when I need a slightly longer focal length. My current plan is to have this as my longest focal length lens.
Here is another resized image.
I needed to take a walk to attend to my volunteer work so I took the Fuji X-T1 with just the 27 mm lens. Since I am still in the evaluative phase and trying different types of pictures, I took the above which are very similar to ones I have taken with other cameras and lenses. I wanted to see how they responded to tweaking in LR and they were great.
They have closed down our streets one at a time and then applied sealer at night. Last night they did our street and I used it as an opportunity to see how well I could take pictures at night. I started taking pictures after 7:30 pm and continued until after 9 pm. I took the last picture this morning as I was walking Misty when the geese were flying over.
The Fujifilm X-T1 with the 27 mm prime lens worked great. The key was to photograph at night in shutter mode with the speed set at 1/125 sec., F2.8, with between -2 and -3 exposure compensation and with ISO in auto up to 6400. I needed to use a shutter speed of 1/125 sec. to freeze the motion of the men and equipment which were moving. For your info, I didn’t apply any noise reduction. I took the pictures in raw mode and then used the Classic Chrome camera calibration in LR6. I made no other adjustments except for some cropping and exposure shifts.
My new Fujifilm X-T1 camera arrived and after waiting for the battery to charge, I walked across the road and photographed this snapping turtle. I used my 27 mm prime lens which isn’t exactly a wildlife lens, but it is the only lens I have for this camera. I have assumed that I would give up photographing wildlife to keep the weight down … and one of the first things I photographed was wildlife.
Note the different style/shape/size windows/doors/openings in a very small area in a very old structure in the above image.
While I have gone back through my older pictures taken a few years ago in Ireland, I discovered that all the best images (my preference) were taken with a micro 4/3 camera with one of two prime lenses. Those lenses were the Panasonic 14 mm or 20 mm pancake lenses. They had effective focal lengths of 28 and 40 mm. Looking at the images made with these two lenses brought back memories of how much I loved using these small pancake lenses on a small camera. If we were in town and walking the streets or touring inside buildings I used the 14 mm lens and if we were out in the country or traveling in the van I used the 20 mm lens. I found these to be near perfect focal lengths in Ireland. As I often do, I have decided to go back to the future … get something new & better that replicates one aspect of a previous capability.
I now have the Fuji X-E1 camera which is even better than the micro 4/3 camera that I used in Ireland. Since it is also small and of the same rangefinder style and since I already have the 27 mm pancake lens with an effective focal length of 40.5 mm, I decided to order the Fuji 18 mm, effective 27 mm focal length, lens. Using these focal lengths on the streets in Hanover, PA will not be the same and may not work as well, but I will also be able to use my 35 mm prime lens (effective 52.5 mm) here if needed on the wider streets.
Our bus trip was to York, PA to see the Tartan Terrors playing at the Strand-Capital Performing Arts Center. I had no intention of taking pictures of the performance, which was excellent by the way. I had several reasons for not photographing them. I wanted to only take a small prime lens on my camera and carry it in a pocket rather than take a camera bag with multiple lenses. I also planned to only take pictures from the bus window. But, most of all, I don’t like dealing with the changing lights used for stage shows. But since I was there, I did take a few pictures. The above are uncropped and distant views since I was using a 27 mm lens and I wanted to show you what it does. As you can see, the colors kept changing but the X-E1 handled it pretty well with jpegs.
If I were to crop one of the above it would look like this.