snapz & thoughtz Blog

Discussions about photography, creativity, and general thoughtz :)​

المقال المصور

في الشهر الماضي أكملت سن الخمسين الميلادية، وقررت البدأ بكتابة المقال المصور والمعروف بـ (photo essay). المقالات المصورة ليست شيء جديد لدى المصورين، لكن هو نمط جديد بالنسبة لي وسأحاول أن أخطي أول خطوة به إن شاء الله. 

التساؤلات عديدة: 

- هل سأكتب بالعربي أم الإنجليزي، أم بالعربي وأترجمه؟

- هل سأحتاج تراخيص من وزارة الإعلام والأمن العام لأتجوّل بالكاميرا؟

- هل سأتمكن من اختيار مواضيع بمحتوى مفيد، وتقديمه بشكل شامل؟

مقالات كهذه ستكون متعبة بالبداية لكوني أجهل متطلباتها، لكن مع الممارسة سأفهمها أكثر واستطيع اختيار مواضيع مناسبة أكثر، إن شاء الله.

A visit to Dubai, and to FUJIFILM Middle East

I've recently noticed some bright pixels in photos made with my FUJIFILM X100T, and they repeat in all photos at the same place. The consistency of their location confirmed they were dead pixels.

So, I tweeted @FujifilmME, asking if they have a solution. They directed me to contact Mr. Mohamad Al Moumani of FUJIFILM Middle East for assistance, and I emailed him. He was a professional gentleman, prompt, and offered several solutions to examine the camera. But since I was planning a trip to Dubai, I asked if I can deliver it myself & he generously accepted.

In my visit to their office, I met Mr. Al Moumani and Mr. Kawamura, who took my X100T and gave me a FUJIFILM X-T1 with a 56mm f/1.2 lens (they knew how much I adore my Canon f/1.2 lens). I didn't expect such generosity, but I was happy that I'll have the X-T1 to test with an excellent lens.

One thing that I immediately missed, was the lack of an ND filter, like the one I had in the X100T. Shooting at f/1.2 without an ND filter was a real challenge, especially at bright sunlight with a shutter speed limited to 1/4000. I, of course, totally forgot about enabling the electronic shutter that can go as fast as 1/32000. I lost a few opportunities, but I promise not to forget about the electronic shutter again :)

On the way to Dubai Mall, through the taxi's windshield - X-T1. The 56mm (equivalent to 85mm) gives very nice compression, that I miss in wider lenses.

On the way to Dubai Mall, through the taxi's windshield - X-T1. The 56mm (equivalent to 85mm) gives very nice compression, that I miss in wider lenses.

Dubai Mall - Waterfall Diver - X-T1. I didn't have a tripod, so I improvised with Photoshop in post processing :)

Dubai Mall - Waterfall Diver - X-T1. I didn't have a tripod, so I improvised with Photoshop in post processing :)

Dubai Mall - Aquarium - X-T1. The long focal length allowed such closeups, while standing 5 meters away. Photoshop was used to remove the glair from the aquarium.

Dubai Mall - Aquarium - X-T1. The long focal length allowed such closeups, while standing 5 meters away. Photoshop was used to remove the glair from the aquarium.

Dubai Mall - Sometimes, texting is the only way - X-T1.

Dubai Mall - Sometimes, texting is the only way - X-T1.

Dubai Mall - Afghani ladies weaving a carpet - X-T1. They were too shy to allow any other angle.

Dubai Mall - Afghani ladies weaving a carpet - X-T1. They were too shy to allow any other angle.

Dubai Mall - Colors - X-T1. I honestly don't know how can those be comfortable.

Dubai Mall - Colors - X-T1. I honestly don't know how can those be comfortable.

The next day, I received a call from Mr. Al Moumani informing me that my X100T was fixed. Their software was able to revive the dead pixels, and my images were clean again. They even gave me an extra battery as a gift, with the free repairs. We discussed the FUJIFILM plans for Saudi Arabia, and I was excited to hear about their plan to give us more attention than ever.

So, I took the metro back to my hotel apartment ...

Through the metro's window, a car was zzzooommming by, glad I was able to catch it - X100T.

Through the metro's window, a car was zzzooommming by, glad I was able to catch it - X100T.

Walking from the metro station to the apartment - Manhole Cover - X100T

Walking from the metro station to the apartment - Manhole Cover - X100T

Walking from the metro station to the apartment - abandoned motorcycles - X100T.

Walking from the metro station to the apartment - abandoned motorcycles - X100T.

I'm back to Riyadh now, let's get back to work ;)

My Daily Camera Bag

After almost 16 months of neglect, I am back to carrying my daily camera bag.

My previous daily camera bag was smaller and lighter. The camera had a fixed 35mm f/2 lens, which was a bit too wide for some of the compositions I wanted. True, it was perfect for street photography, but I wanted more. Here is my previous bag:

My daily walkabout bag

In my new bag, I've changed a few things:

  • Upgraded from the FUJIFILM X100, to the X100T. This fixed many things for me, mainly, the autofocus hunting issue. It was so bad, that you'll loose the photo opportunity, before the X100 was able to get the correct focus. This should have me covered for wide compositions.
  • Added a new a camera body and lens: Canon EOS-5D Mark III and my beloved Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II lens. It took me a while to grasp the shallow depth of focus, but you pick it up with practice.
  • No more: iPad, and gorillapod. Added some new batteries, and chewing gum :)
Getting the angle correct, and focusing on what matters, is important at shallow DOF.

Getting the angle correct, and focusing on what matters, is important at shallow DOF.

Meadow
253 - Sep 9th, 2012 - Oogie-Boogie at f/1.2 #365photoAR

The new bag is heavy, around 5kg, which may feel heavier after a long walk. But it's a test, let's see if I can endure it :)