Gear Theory

A Fuji X100 and Solution that isn’t a Solution to my Photography Grump

December 24, 2019

As many of you might already be aware, for the most part this year I’ve been a right grump about photography. Despite in many ways finding myself opening more doors than I’ve closed, overall it’s not been a great year for snapping, or my attitude toward it. One way or another, I think one thing is certain, and it’s that my tendency to overthink about things to do with photography has taken hold. I know it has, as even writing this post feels like the product of too much thought.

The sort of thinking I’m talking about is the sort that’s seen me limiting myself to certain films, sticking to shooting this camera or that, trying to break free of habits, trying to form new ones. In the end, all I’ve really ended up with – almost regardless of what I’ve tried – is a big fat lack of enthusiasm. Almost invariably I’ve thought I’m onto some sort of solution to the problem, I’ve then locked myself into said solution, then lost enough interest in it that it then feels like a chore, thus leading me back to square one.

The funny thing is, I still have little fleeting moments of what once was. And that’s what’s led me to this most recent “cure” for my low photography ebb, or at very least a hint at what might be the path out of it. This time, I’ve realised that when and where I have found myself enthused by photography recently it has involved a digital camera… or at very least something of the reduced thought that can go into shooting a digital camera.

Digital photography, I have concluded, has a number of specific merits that fit well with my current state of mind. The first is that oh-so-sweet instant gratification. When I’m feeling crappy about photography, reminding myself that it’s fun by being able to see the result without having to wait for my film to be developed seems to help quite a lot.

Secondly, for the most part, I just can’t be bothered with shooting entire rolls of film, so not only am I not getting any instant gratification, I’m rarely seeing any results at all. Finally, digital – if I want it to – can feel so much more throwaway. Taking snaps with a digital camera costs nothing. The images never even have to see the light of day if I don’t want them too, I can just delete them there and then if I fancy. This is what a lot of people love about film and loath about digital, but when you’re in a grump like I am a lot of the time at the moment, actually doing something that has less of a sense of gravity holds quite the appeal.

I mostly noticed this when shooting my Leica digital. Recent experiences shooting with the TTArtisans 11mm, the shots I took of my kids for the Xmas book, and some other stuff I’ve shot as part of a little project I’ve been half-heartedly working on have all been occasions I’ve ended up feeling really good about what I’m doing. I lot of this feels like it comes down to the fact that I’ve not felt like I’m taking things too seriously, but am still actually taking photos. The activity is there, but the gravity of it isn’t – which has felt quite good.

That said, even the Leica has sometimes felt like a bit of a chore. It’s just a bit big to chuck in a pocket just to have something to take out when I’m not really intending to take any photos. So, what I at some point decided that I might need was a camera that takes less effort to shoot than the Leica. All this had me thinking about a high-quality pocket-sized digital of some sort, but maybe something that still mostly felt like a “real” camera…

To be honest, I didn’t actually expect to buy anything – I’ve been off gear purchasing for recently too. Then in a moment of idle eBaying about a month back I spotted an original Fuji X100. I had a love/hate relationship with the original X100, but in many ways, I remember my time with one fondly, so since it was a good price I went for it.

In the end, I didn’t end up shooting it for quite a while after receiving it. I charged the battery then chucked it in the camera cabinet waiting for a moment of some sort of inspiration. Of course, a moment of true inspiration didn’t come – inspiration is obviously something that I’m not particularly familiar at the moment. What in fact happened was simply a moment of need for a camera that I couldn’t decide how to fulfil. I was staring blankly at the vast swathe of black and sliver boxes wondering which of them I could be bothered to do anything with… None of them felt like the answer, but I didn’t want to leave the house without one either.

Then the Fuji X100 caught my eye. That would do, I thought, remembering the idea I’d had that it would let me take photos without the baggage I feel like I’ve built up around shooting film. Funnily enough, despite remembering that all this had been the reason I bought it in the first place, I still resigned myself to the fact that I probably wouldn’t use it. I’d have it on me though, and that was enough to see me stop fretting and leave the house.

Then, when walking down the road thinking about how I don’t just take photos when I’m out and about anymore, all of a sudden I had that flash of desire to start snapping. I started seeing things around me that might make nice photos in the way I always used to. So out came the Fuji – and I was right, it did feel like less to think about. I could just snap without any real thought to the outcome, and I’d be able to see the photos on my computer on the same day…! Of course, I hadn’t set the camera up so it was still in the modes the previous owner had left it in. Still, I got a couple of Velvia simulations JPEGS I quite liked.

Fuji X100 Snaps

Fuji X100 Snaps

When I got home I decided I should probably poke around in the menu and get it working how I wanted it to. I’d forgotten how simple this camera is. It’s pretty much as I remember it being actually. Slightly clunky, fairly easy to use, but moreover really easy to set up in such a way that it basically just feels like a point & shoot with a parallax correcting optical viewfinder and total manual overrides if I wanted or felt like I needed them.

I’ve even set it so the rear screen doesn’t come on unless I specifically turn it on with the menu or play button which makes it feel a little less digital… but more on that another day. A couple of days later, with all set up to taste, I took it out again and whilst out and about found myself enjoying a few more opportunities to snap. In fact, I really enjoyed it.

Fuji X100 Snaps

Fuji X100 Snaps

Fuji X100 Snaps

So there we have it, solution #413 to my photography low ebb – shoot digital. Of course, this isn’t a real solution, it’s a fabricated one like all the things I’ve tried before. The solution isn’t in the camera – digital or otherwise – it’s really in how I think.

Shooting digital isn’t the solution, but the thoughts I’ve had around it and the camera choices needing to have less gravity have made me realise – as I said in the opening paragraph – that I’m putting too much thinking into what I’m doing and not enough action.

Film, by its nature, has become a little bit burdensome. It requires me to shoot whole rolls in one camera or another which in itself means I have to think a lot about what I’m doing and when. So then when adding more limitations to that by only shooting this film or that in this camera or that isn’t going to help me at all. In short, forcing solutions isn’t the solution.

Freeing myself from all that by shooting the Fuji might feel like a solution, but really it isn’t. The solution to not snapping, is simply snapping more and not thinking too much about how, when, why and what with. So that’s my New Years resolution I think – at least when it comes to photography – I’m going to try not to think about it all too much and just try and get on with enjoying it again… let’s see how that pans out, shall we… HA!

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52 Comments

  • Reply
    Peter Samson
    December 24, 2019 at 6:47 pm

    I still enjoy using my Fuji X100S that I purchased new in 2013.

    Peter

  • Reply
    Ron Siciblia
    December 24, 2019 at 6:58 pm

    Your honesty is appreciated. Me? Got into photography again because of the iPhone and years and many thousands of exposures later am considering getting a medium-format film kit. 🙂 It’s all good, Just do *something* and enjoy the gift of seeing.

    • Reply
      Hamish Gill
      December 24, 2019 at 9:49 pm

      Well said! The gift of seeing – I like that, I’m going to come back to that

      • Reply
        Lou Cohen
        February 17, 2020 at 11:20 pm

        The gift of seeing can be a curse. Eventually I wound up feeling like there was not much that was worth shooting. Double edged sword.

  • Reply
    David Cuttler
    December 24, 2019 at 7:01 pm

    Bulk load short rolls., say 12-15 exposures. I started doing that back in the 50s, and I still do it today.

    • Reply
      Hamish Gill
      December 24, 2019 at 9:48 pm

      I need to get back into home dev to make that work for me I think

  • Reply
    Neal Angrisano
    December 24, 2019 at 7:26 pm

    I feel your pain. One “cure” for me when I am in the same spot is to shoot absolutely the most wrong camera that I possibly can for a given application. For instance, I will shoot a rugby match with a TLR or portraits with a pinhole. I find that this makes me think radically differently about what and how I am shooting and really causes me to take major risks. Usually the results are interesting if not amazing. But hey, if they suck, its the camera’s fault, right? 🙂

    • Reply
      Hamish Gill
      December 24, 2019 at 9:48 pm

      Hah, yeah that’s a good thought!!

  • Reply
    Nick Lyle
    December 24, 2019 at 7:29 pm

    I am very familiar with the problem caused by having too many cameras loaded with too many films. Sometimes I don’t see the results until many months later, which can take the momentum out of any goal-oriented shooting. On the other hand it can be fun to work with images that I forgot all about, and I take notes that usually allow me to reconstruct the ingredients of a shot.

    This happens less often with rolls of 120, with only a few shots per roll. You might try bulk loading cartridges of 135 film with short films, say 12 shot rolls.

    I do like experimenting with gear, but that love of tinkering is not enough to maintain interest in actual photography in the long run. I think you are putting too many eggs in the one basket; snapping is both your job and your hobby, and a family task as well. You might benefit from a new and thrilling hobby, something like mountaineering. It is fine to fold photography into the new hobby. The idea is to give your mind new things to chew on, not to get away from cameras.

    A camera is just a tool. Ask yourself what you are building with the tools you have.

    • Reply
      Hamish Gill
      December 24, 2019 at 9:45 pm

      … I recently bought some new wheels for my car, another hobby I can feel myself getting into. You’re right, the brain space elsewhere worked a treat!

  • Reply
    thorsten wulff
    December 24, 2019 at 7:54 pm

    Dear Hamish, the Fuji is a very special camera for me. I have the 100s since it’s came out, use it with manual focus and it gave me some of my best pictures of the last couple of years. Right now I’m testing the Xpro3, but it’s not the same. Merry Christmas!

    • Reply
      Hamish Gill
      December 24, 2019 at 9:47 pm

      You’ll have to share some results – with both actually! In fact, if you fancy sharing some thoughts about the XPro3, I have a couple of others posting early reactions, you’re welcome to do the same!!

  • Reply
    Loris Viotto
    December 24, 2019 at 8:35 pm

    ma perché non Ti fai meno problemi e scatti quando Ti pare, tanto, credimi, non cambia nulla!. Ciao.

  • Reply
    Nigel Cliff
    December 24, 2019 at 8:48 pm

    I’ve heard many good things about the X100 series but keep asking myself would I cope with a fixed lens,stupid question really as I often go out with a bagfull of lenses and just use one,maybe it’s worth a punt as the originals are pretty reasonable

    • Reply
      Hamish Gill
      December 24, 2019 at 9:31 pm

      They are indeed – help me start a new craze! 😆

  • Reply
    jon
    December 24, 2019 at 9:08 pm

    Boy, can I relate to this. Coincidentally, I’ve been doing the same with an X pro that came my way with a 27mm lens. I love it.

    • Reply
      Hamish Gill
      December 24, 2019 at 9:37 pm

      Cracking, glad I’m not alone… sorry for your burden 🤣😉

  • Reply
    John Squillace
    December 24, 2019 at 9:10 pm

    Hi, Hamish – first of all, wishing you and yours a wonderful holiday season and a Happy New Year! And thanks so much for hosting this engaging, informative and entertaining blog – much appreciated!

    A few thoughts on your ongoing funk. I found myself in the same situation, mostly due to an over abundance of film cameras (despite a series of ongoing parings-down). I was never sure what to bring along, and the differences in control interfaces across different brands proved maddening. So I’ve resolved to simplify further – a Zeiss ZI with 3 or 4 lenses; a Pentax 645n with 3 lenses, and a Nikon F6 with a few lenses. Reducing the physical and emotional clutter greatly helped to reduce my own funk.

    Re: finishing a given roll of film, I’ve limited myself to 18 frames per roll – the amount of negatives my Epson scanner can accommodate at a single clip. I either buy rolls of 24, and shoot 18 frames, or rolls of 36, from which I snip off a foot or so, and then shoot 18 frames.

    Re: the use of a digital camera, perhaps try as a logical extension using an instant camera – maybe something like a Fuji Instax 90, which features some creative controls. Nothing but fun – and totally liberating – walking around and snapping instant pix to your heart’s content!

    Lastly, given your desire to photograph AND the ongoing obligation to maintain a blog, maybe you simply need a bit of a break – perhaps a few weeks off from photographing and writing would prove restorative.

    So just some thoughts, for what’s it worth; may your grump be tamed and your creative juices flow!

    • Reply
      Hamish Gill
      December 24, 2019 at 9:30 pm

      Hi John, yeah the kit pile is definitely an issue. I cleared it out not long ago too.
      Somewhere in there is a sofort – I should perhaps give it another run…
      and yes, bulk rolling is on my agenda for some time in the future. I need to get back into home dev, as that would make it feel a lot more viable shooting short rolls.
      And thanks – maybe this is a little break, or at least maybe I should see it as such…

  • Reply
    Kevin
    December 24, 2019 at 9:34 pm

    Hi Hamish, I lurk around your blog and enjoy the read! I try and avoid giving advice because because I seldom know the full story but this funk that you’ve found yourself in, I thought I’d relay a memorable quote from Aaron Nace at Phlearn when he was asked about finding inspiration when falling into a slump. He said “I put something I care about in front of the camera.” The low gravity Xmas project with your kids is a good example. Over the years I would add to what he says with my own “and don’t try to care about what’s in front of your camera when you really don’t” As photographers, we have to remember we are the only people on the planet who take pictures when we don’t care about the subject. We try and learn, push ourselves to get a great shot where others don’t see it etc. We grab our cameras and look for something to shoot. The rest of the humans on the planet see something interesting and then start looking for a camera.

    I read about George Carlin; he wrote 10’s of thousands of jokes and selected 200 or so of the best for his show, the rest were garbage. I saw a documentary on Jackie Chan; he has a warehouse style library where he stores 1000’s of fighting ideas on paper, pictures and video so he can select the best for his movie; the rest is garbage. This is a trait with many successful people.

    With your blog, you’ve created a pressure cooker environment for yourself when it comes to shooting pictures. My advice: give yourself space to create a ton of garbage and just keep creating. The right images and processes will come when circumstances let them enter. Care about your pictures when you care about your subject; the rest of the time, your wasting yourself if you try and care about things that don’t matter to you.

    Kev

    • Reply
      Hamish Gill
      December 24, 2019 at 9:42 pm

      Good advice indeed! I’ve had a few rants lately about the value of my work, and often talk about most of the value being in photos of my kids. The little project I mention is similar – something that means something to me. It’s a slow burn, but whenever I shoot it I leave feeling more “full”.
      The garbage is what I miss creating though, I suppose – it’s odd, as you say, that we do it this way round. But whilst it’s not so fulfilling, it still feels valuable to me, even if it has no value to anyone else

  • Reply
    Cheyenne Morrison
    December 24, 2019 at 9:50 pm

    Hey Hamish, best wishes for a Merry Christmas to you and your lovely family, and prayers that you will have a Safe and Prosperous 2020. Oh I do love your rants mate. As I said on my appearance on the Photography with Classic Lenses Podcast recently I do not own a digital camera. However, that doesn’t mean I am anti-digital and I think the whole film vs. digital argument is totally spurious. It’s all about creativity, and what works for you, or not.

    For me digital cannot replace film, and I shoot exclusively film because I turned 56 and many things I grew up with just keep disappearing, and film photography has been a part of my life since my earliest holiday to the beach as a child. Yes, I know shooting a whole roll, cost of developing scanning etc can be a pain as you point out, but for me I take the glass half full approach. I feel so lucky that I can still shoot film and get processed at a 1 Hour Lab at all. I love the fact that sometimes it may take a week or more to shoot a roll, and when I get the images back there are shots I forgot taking. That whole process of dropping off the film and then getting the prints is kind of magical for me, and I fear that I may lose that in the very near future.

    As far as digital cameras the Fuji X-series is a camera line that I find appealing, and I have seen some great work done using them. The black and white mode is really nice, as well of course as the film simulations. The main reason people love it is the lens, which most don’t know is a modified double-Gauss, with 7 elements in 5 groups based of A.W. Tronnier’s Xenon design, which is one of my favourite lenses.

    Some of my favourite shots are by Fuji 2018 Ambassador Valerie Jardin of Paris, New York, and Cuba
    http://valeriejardinphotography.com/havana/

    • Reply
      Hamish Gill
      December 28, 2019 at 4:23 pm

      Cheers Cheyenne, and thanks for the link! Trust you to know the lens formula! HA!

  • Reply
    Andy Šedík
    December 24, 2019 at 10:13 pm

    I picked up a used X100 almost six years ago. I was shooting a bit of film like you but found myself with multiple cameras loaded with partially exposed film. Decided to try an X100 as a walk around camera and found it worked great for that. The exposure compensation knob drove me crazy until I found the mini rubber bands my daughter would use to make wristbands fit perfectly and stopped the dial from turning.
    https://www.instagram.com/p/6dZasJq-Z_/?utm_source=ig_web_copy_link
    The focus can be painfully slow and the camera eats batteries but it does create some beautiful jpegs and is small enough to bring with you everywhere. After reading this and going through my own creativity doldrums ( I rarely carry a camera with me these days), may I should go back to carrying it in my rucksack everyday.

    • Reply
      Hamish Gill
      December 28, 2019 at 4:20 pm

      Yeah, it sounds like you should!! I have some of those loom band things hanging around, I might give it a go!

  • Reply
    Mark Kittleson
    December 24, 2019 at 10:40 pm

    Hamish, I feel your lack of enthusiasm and completely understand. I am there with you. I have cameras from my Leica M2. to a full range of vintage Nikon bodies and glass. 2 late model Nikon Diego’s and glass to boot. I have come to realize over the years that it really never is about the equipment (sorry). I have no creative spirit at this time. Like anything in life some downtime allows me to concentrate on other things in my life. I am looking forward to shooting the M2 though this holiday season though.😊 Your enthusiasm will return… film or digital! Thank you for your continued thoughts and observations. You remain an inspiration for me…..enthusiasm or not!

    • Reply
      Hamish Gill
      December 28, 2019 at 4:19 pm

      Thanks, Mark, appreciated!

  • Reply
    Eddy
    December 25, 2019 at 12:14 am

    Nice piece Hamish and rings true. Have had a terrible fug myself this year and sure lots of your readers will know the feeling too. Was reassuring to hear such an honest take. Making pics, like making anything rather than just consuming, is complicated I guess: sometimes more thought, sometimes less is required. Glad the Fuji helped lift you. Happy Christmas to you and your family.

    • Reply
      Hamish Gill
      December 28, 2019 at 4:17 pm

      Thank Eddy, to you and yours too!

  • Reply
    John Lockwood
    December 25, 2019 at 12:17 am

    Hope you’re having a lovely holiday season my friend. I think we all hit that wall occasionally…or seasonally. But this to, shall pass.

    My pocket camera is the incomparable Nikon Coolpix A, a terrible naming convention because although it’s the size of Nikon’s P&S toy cameras, it contains an APS-C sensor and 28mm equivalent lens. One can shoot it off-the-cuff, or secure it atop a Gitzo tripod and take landscapes manually. Quite fun. Maybe a Ricoh GR is what you need to get the Lomo Mojo flowing. “Think less, shoot more”

    • Reply
      Hamish Gill
      December 28, 2019 at 4:17 pm

      I did think about one of those. I wanted a viewfinder though

  • Reply
    Bruno Chalifour
    December 25, 2019 at 3:06 am

    Hello Hamish, I think you have come to the realization that what matters to you is photographing. Thence the tool that allows you to do just that is the welcome one, the right one, whatever it may be. It is as simple as that. A photographer needs to take photographs, it is almost vital (psychologically but I would add practically, in the same way a marathon runner needs to run on a regular basis). Cameras, film or digital, are just conduits, tools… we are here to talk about photography, share photographic experiences and we do not have to limit ourselves to 35 mm film,… which does not mean we should not acknowledge the legacy. Thank you for sharing your questioning. Best.

  • Reply
    Bruno Chalifour
    December 25, 2019 at 3:09 am

    PS: I also enjoy the fact that my X100 (T) can always be with me and be a very self-effacing companion when I want to travel light.

  • Reply
    Steve Harper
    December 25, 2019 at 3:18 am

    Wait a minute. I’ve been sort of following your depressing blog recently and just noticed something “realised” and not “realized”? Hamish Gill . You’re irish right? Merry Christmas or cheers.

    • Reply
      Hamish Gill
      December 28, 2019 at 4:16 pm

      HA! Erm, I’m english with a scotish name… so not sure why you guessed irish? haha

  • Reply
    John F.
    December 25, 2019 at 10:24 am

    Your final pargraph has a ring of ‘Lomography’ about it…
    ;0)

    ‘Appy Christmas and thanks for a great blog !

    • Reply
      Hamish Gill
      December 28, 2019 at 4:15 pm

      I’m not sure what you mean, but thanks?? 😀

  • Reply
    adrian jones
    December 25, 2019 at 11:00 am

    What an excellent article that spoke volumes to me, it seems we are on a similar journey. i spend far too much time worrying about photography that i almost cause my own mistakes and feel that iam never happy with anything that i take. The film dilemma i struggle with daily, i have 12 shots of ektar 100 left but i probably need to shoot at iso400. Do i rewind what i have and use the Fuji Pro 400h. Decisions Decisions. Digital i agree is not the answer it just helps paper over the cracks for the time being.

    • Reply
      Hamish Gill
      December 28, 2019 at 4:14 pm

      Paper over the cracks… I like that, yes!

  • Reply
    Ian
    December 25, 2019 at 6:50 pm

    As photography is a fusion of art and technology, the words of a certain music teacher spring to mind from 1978 when I was at upper school. This is assuming you see music as a fusion of art and technology as well. All though a simplistic analogy it kind of works – ones visual, the other audio. The quote was “Inspiration is 90% perspiration” So regardless of your state of mind or what you are doing, always have a camera with you Hamish. You just never know.

    • Reply
      Hamish Gill
      December 28, 2019 at 4:01 pm

      Fortunately, that’s one habit I haven’t lost. I can’t even walk to the shop without one

  • Reply
    zoran vaskic
    December 25, 2019 at 9:43 pm

    Hi Hamish,
    I haven’t followed the trail of your photography malaise – mal/ease perhaps? – from its most recent ‘inception’ as I only check your blog inconsistently and rarely post. A thought that comes to me as I read this post today is one that makes sense personally to me, and while not necessarily being a direct go to immediate solution, I think it does help bring some – some, not complete – clarity to the fog of mystery of what may be going on.I think it to be generally true when I think of instances of malaise through out my life. Generally speaking. I do not say it is the case with you. It may not be. But it also may be. And these malaises have not been a few over the course of almost 60 years. I would find myself losing or having no interest in things I enjoyed and pursued as activities. I came to the simple conclusion that my loss of interest in ‘things’ was not the root of whatever was going on, but a symptom. I was disturbed, thrown off, off kilter from within myself for some one or more reasons that are knowable if one takes the time to reflect and untangle the web, and as a result of me being not right in myself it affected everything I looked at. I also found when I felt right again about myself that my enjoyment, and interest or motivation concerning the things of life, the things that made up my life, were back in full swing. I identified this many years ago. It doesnt mean it has ever been easy thereafter dealing with a bout of down-ness, which is perhaps the simplest tag to put on it since I never found myself feeling great during these times. During such time creativity next to nil. On the other hand, and I wish harness this, creativity really came easy or easier when I felt good about myself. So I think the symptom or symptoms should be separated from the root of what may throw us. I have seen and confirmed this pattern over the course of my life, I would almost call it a ‘law’, a principle. It has brought clarity, and thus some help. One still has to walk thru the sorting out of themself, there is no automatic or easy way out it seems. But that seems to be the mystery of life, and I think we like mystery. It would be no fun if everything was obvious and immediately known or knowable. Except on certain occasions. All the best in walking out of or through your ‘woods’

    • Reply
      Hamish Gill
      December 28, 2019 at 4:00 pm

      Thank you for your insight Zoran, I think there is definitely a good chunk of that here. I’m actually back “on my feet” now, but the last 6 months have involved a lot of upheaval in my home life (moved house) and a lot of stress at work. The work stress in fact was worse than I can remember having. I definitely think that was where some of this started. I wonder now if I have just lost some habits. Thank you again for your thoughts.

  • Reply
    Vladimir
    December 25, 2019 at 11:13 pm

    Hello Hamish, hope you don’t mind a drunk and spirally comment from a russian film shooter and vodka drinker because well, it is the season! Mate listen, you want a 90s SLR. Its the bridge between digital and film. You will get through rolls faster and their superior metering means you rarely get an underexposed shot. Any of them will do – Canon, Minolta Pentax they all made good ones. But since I know you have F mount glass, take the Nikon f90x for instance. You can buy them off eBay all day for 50 quid in great condition without a mark on them. often all they need is rubbing alcohol to the backdoor (all of them are sticky) It does manual focus well, is perfect for left eye shooting and most importantly it blazes through 36 frames of Kentmere or Foma 400 like nobody’s business. I just auto bracket everything and get a roll done friday/saturday, its developed and scanned by sunday before dinner. If that gap is any longer than a weekend I tend to just forget about the 10 frames left on the roll and move on to something else, what leads to a pile up of undeveloped film or cameras with film left in it. Then I do one mad dash every month where I’m breaking out the Paterson big boy tanks 8 rolls at a time and sit on the computer scanning films until 3 AM. With the F90x I get my family to actually sit still for a split second when daddy wants to take another picture, because they know they’ll have a scan of it for their instagram likes the same weekend. (this is the part where my daughter rolls her eyes, because instagram is only for seriously uncool people in their 30’s – like daddy) merry christmas and I hope your slump comes to an end soon!

    • Reply
      Hamish Gill
      December 28, 2019 at 3:55 pm

      I live for the next drunk and spirally comment from Russian film shooters!!
      A road I went down with a Nikon f75 – link – a very good shout though, I might crack out the f80!

  • Reply
    David Hlll
    December 26, 2019 at 3:00 pm

    Hi Hamish — happy christmas and a fine new year to you and yours. Its a terrible shame the X100 is such an elegant little bit of kit, isn’t it? I’ve had my X100 for 5 or 6 years now, but sort of got out of the habit of using it after dropping it in the lake that time. These things happen, and that surely wasn’t the camera’s fault, but it took some time to get it dried out and functioning again, but remarkably so it’s [apparently?] good as new. I resurrected it last summer and all seemed well until I shot my sister’s wedding and the SanDisk SD card went pfft, so that was a 90% loss. These things happen, and THAT surely wasn’t the camera’s fault, so I’m trying again. A week or two ago I tossed it in my bag, and on the train to the city I reformatted the bloody SD card, and in the process managed to reset the camera to factory defaults, so then I started going through the options menus again to get it setup as I think I might like, with reference to Ken Rockwell’s user guide [https://www.kenrockwell.com/fuji/x100/users-guide.htm] … an extremely useful piece that is actually devoted to the X100 and not the later iterations. Its a swift review of the settings with some remarks about why he prefers this or that, much of which I can defer to but where I diverge I feel I have some basis for doing so. I find it infinitely more useful than the feature descriptions in the Fuji user manual. And so tally ho, I ‘m shooting digital again 🙂

    • Reply
      Hamish Gill
      December 28, 2019 at 3:51 pm

      Funnily enough, I was thinking of doing a set-up post like I did about the sony 5100
      That’s amazing that yours recovered!!

  • Reply
    Jim DeArment
    December 27, 2019 at 1:25 pm

    Hamish, reading about your struggle with inspiration reminded me of a video by Sid Ceaser, a photographer in New Hampshire: https://youtu.be/D94ZorsI6wc. I think sometimes having more than one camera leads to analysis paralysis. I drive myself crazy sometimes deciding whether to bring a digital or film camera depending on where I’m going. Yet I don’t know that I could live under the one camera/one lens philosophy. Although I dream of Olympus remaking a digital version of the Stylus Epic MJU II, but with either a 40mm or 50mm f/2 lens if having a full-frame sensor, or a 28 or 35mm if it had an APS-C sensor. That would be my idea of an ideal carry everywhere camera.

    • Reply
      Hamish Gill
      December 28, 2019 at 3:49 pm

      100%, but I used to deal with that problem without too much issue. As someone who blogs about cameras, I would find it logistically difficult not to have a few in stock, so got used to having them around. A good shout though

  • Reply
    Miquel Bresolí
    December 27, 2019 at 2:04 pm

    Hi Hamish.
    I felt like you, a long time ago.
    My solution was the Epson RD-1s.
    The closest to film photography, but with the immediacy of the digital. Well, I have the back screen closed and I don’t look at the photos until I download them to my computer.
    Very fun and relaxing!

    • Reply
      Hamish Gill
      December 28, 2019 at 3:48 pm

      I used to have an RD-1s – I really regret selling it!

  • Reply
    jeremy north
    December 29, 2019 at 3:40 pm

    As a fellow grump, I totally get what you’re saying. My way out was by using an Olympus P&S, yes that one :-), but hey whatever it takes. I look forward to meet-ups in 2020. J

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