My life in cameras part 11: Fujifilm X100T

Last time I wrote about how I lost my creativity and inspirations for photography. I was just buying shiny new toys instead of observing my surroundings for interesting scenes. It ended with me selling all my equipment because I thought that photography was simply no longer an enjoyable hobby of mine. And that is alright, sometimes we loose interest in things or activities.

But even before I sold everything I was lusting for one of those fancy Fujifilm cameras. I was interested in the X100 series of smallish rangefinder style cameras. I was intrigued by the use of marked dials for aperture, shutter and exposure compensation. I was even more intrigued by Fuji’s film simulations. I figured this was just me wanting to buy new toys so I never considered buying one. But a few months after selling my gear I really wanted to go out and take pictures again.

Why I bought the Fujifilm X100T

So long story short. I bought a used X100T which at the time had already been superseded by a newer model. I could have chosen one of the interchangeable lens cameras from Fujifilm but I deliberately wanted to limit myself to one focal length. I wanted to uses the marked dials and rely as little as possible on electronic screens and menus. The X100’s unique selling point was an optical viewfinder.

Film simulations are nothing special really. They can be recreated with ease in software. But I more and more disliked doing post-processing with my images. I spend enough time in front a monitor for work and I did not want my hobby to be the same. Besides for me editing is often very repetitive. Having the film simulations in a camera was great. Together with the optical viewfinder, the marked dials and the film sims it would be like putting a roll of film into my camera and waiting to see the results later.

Fujifilm X100T sample pictures

Lakeview

Lakeview (2019, Fujifilm X100T)
Lakeview (2019) Fujifilm X100T 23mm@F4 1/550s ISO400 Classic Chrome

Where I live there are neither mountains nor beaches. Everything is rather flat and sandy. But we do have a lot of lakes. This is one of them at around 6 pm. One reason I wanted switched to Fujifilm was that the larger sensor compared to my old gear was much better at capturing wide tonal ranges and minimizing digital noise. I think the colors are just amazing and the picture ought to be printed and not viewed on a monitor.

Historical Brickwork

Historical Brickwork (2019, Fujifilm X100T)
Historical Brickwork (2019) Fujifilm X100T 23mm@F4 1/400s ISO400 Classic Chrome

Architectural details are fascinating. These bricks might be up to 175 years old and they belong to a royal viewing tower. Imagine a time when having some cognac and enjoying a nice view over the area was considered entertainment worthy of the ruling elite.

Afternoon Beer

Afternoon Beer (Fujifilm X100T)
Afternoon Beer (2019) Fujifilm X100T 23mm@F8 1/60s ISO800

My humble self can not afford his own viewing tower but some beer at a pleasant outdoor café is certainly part of a leisurely day. I think I just played around with my camera here but for some reason I kept this picture.

Berlin Alexanderplatz

Berlin Alexanderplatz (2018, Fujifilm X100T)
Berlin Alexanderplatz (2018) Fujifilm X100T 23mm@F4 1/21s ISO400 Monochrome +Yellow Filter

This is my favorite train station in Berlin. I think it is even the largest one. It is not pretty by a wide margin and Alexanderplatz is surely not a pleasant urban space. But the square and the train station are interesting throughout. You can see subway architecture from before the Great War, other subway stations are from the interwar years, additions and renovations done during socialism and finally modern touches that make it one of the most frequented stations in Berlin. The underground areas are scary and fascinating at the same time. I think this is a must see for visitors just hold on to your wallets unfortunately.

Intersection

Intersection (2018, Fujifilm X100T)
Intersection (2018) Fujifilm X100T 23mm@F4 1/680s ISO400 Monochrome + Yellow Filter

A usually busy intersection in Berlin. I know a few readers who might recognize the place. This is very typical for Berlin, the wide avenues lined by housing blocks. Berlin is in parts not really a walking friendly city. Sure the sidewalks are spacious here but everything is just full of cars, traffic and noise. You can’t just cross the street to check out a store and you would not want to sit and have a coffee outside. But just a few dozen meters left and right are calm residential streets with shops, cafés and a vibrant outdoor dining culture. Sometimes I miss this place.

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