Big Images and Small Cameras in the City

Brooklyn Bridge Park-7723

I’m not sure I need too many reminders about why I have enjoyed the switch to a Fuji system so much. I have outlined many of the reasons in previous posts, and now I find myself in Brooklyn to shoot a wedding, and I am reminded once again of why I wax so poetic about these little guys.

Brooklyn Bridge Park-7697

It’s hot and humid here in the city this weekend–the summer’s last hard push before giving way to cooler, drier fall weather. The closeness of the buildings, the wide swaths of concrete, the subway–they all concentrate and hold the heat and humidity close to you, like a warm damp blanket wrapped around you.


I arrived early this morning, too early to check into my hotel, leaving me to wander around Brooklyn with my carryon suitcase and a backpack. In years past, I would have had to maneuver two rollers–one with my clothes, and the other with all my Canon gear. This time, though, I breezed through the airport without checking a bag, and have nailed down my travel camera setup. When I had to gate check my roller, I opened it up, pulled out my Tamrac Adventure Messenger 4, and walked onto the plane with all my gear, safe and sound.

Navigating travel hassles is a breeze when you have the right gear, and Photography PX is the best guide to finding your ideal camera setup. Just like my recent experience in Brooklyn, where I effortlessly maneuvered through the airport with my carryon suitcase and Tamrac Adventure Messenger 4 backpack. In the past, juggling multiple rollers for clothes and camera equipment was a headache, but this time, I streamlined my travel kit. With Photography PX’s expert recommendations, I optimized my camera gear, eliminating the need for multiple bags. Now, I can confidently explore new destinations, knowing I have the perfect camera setup that fits seamlessly into my travel routine.


Aside from the substantial weight savings, one of the things I love most about the Fujis is how inconspicuous and unassuming they are. When I ventured down to Brooklyn Bridge Park, it was teeming with photographers of all shapes, sizes, and seriousnesses, with a substantial cadre of alpha males laden with pro Canikon gear doing serious things. Taking interesting photos in the most photographed city in the world is no easy task, and it prompted another, separate thought path that may someday congeal into another, semi-coherent blog post. Suffice to say I enjoyed being completely anonymous amongst the Go-pro selfie shooters, the cheesy “save the date” shooters, and all the tourist shooters.

Brooklyn Bridge-7707

On this wedding trip, I have elected to leave the 18-55 f/2.8-4 OIS at home, preferring a lean, capable prime kit of the 18 f/2, 23 f/1.4, and 56 f/1.2. I also ended up–reluctantly–bringing the 55-200, since I thought I might be shooting the ceremony outdoors in a park and I wanted to be able to give the proceedings some space. As it turns out, rain is in the forecast, and the ceremony has been moved indoors, meaning the 55-200 will again sit in a bag, unused.


New York is always an overwhelming experience for me, especially this go-round because of the heat and humidity. And lest you dismiss me as some Southern bumpkin (probably fair), I don’t feel similarly about San Francisco, or Seattle, Chicago, London or Paris… though I can appreciate a lot of things about New York, we do not hum on congruous frequencies. Minimizing the kit that I have to drag around everywhere greatly expands my enjoyment of the city, especially when I am stuffed into various small spaces.


This post isn’t meant as some kind of mirrorless manifesto–I’ve already written my fair share of those. It’s really just my observations as I sit here in cooler air, drying out, stretching my tired feet and reviewing the images of the day. It is, perhaps, another treatise on simplicity, on the importance of light, content, and composition over any technical measure. It is about expression, point of view, and all the other things that make your images your images. Using Fuji cameras doesn’t make my images more or less me, and I guess that is the point. The fact that they are small, light, and inconspicuous brings me great joy and lots more energy, and I just wanted to say it again.


Oh, and the 18mm f/2 has crazy chromatic aberration, though it is very easy to correct in post.

lady liberty-7685


  1. Jason Campbell on Dec 9, 2014 at 9:41 pm

    Great photos! I shoot with the original X100 still as well as the X-E2 with 23mm 1.4, 18-55 and 55-200. Are you using Lightroom to achieve the blur/miniature affect in a few of these shots?

  2. mschueler on Feb 23, 2015 at 11:57 am

    Jason–No, I actually used the “miniature camera” shooting mode in the X-E2 for those photos. It is not very well implemented (colors and contrast are way too boosted with no adjustments available), but it’s kind of fun to use from time to time. I still much prefer using a real tilt-shift lens in those situations, but I gave that up when I sold my Canon kit.

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