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Liverpool Sunrises with the Fuji X-Pro 1

For me, taking the time to watch the sunrise is a spirit-lifting experience in itself.  Every day is new, untold and full of possibilities.  To be out there facing that iconic view, seeing the day being born out of the darkness and lighting up the city where I’ve spent my entire life is quite an evocative thing to witness.

That said, it’s not always such a calming experience because as the sun rises and its rays dance over the clouds, occasionally, and perhaps only for a few fleeting seconds, the sunlight skims the atmosphere at just the right angles and your eyes are treated to a fantastic explosion of colour.  It’s at those times when my sleepy mind is suddenly very alert and I’m most likely darting between two cameras I’ve got set up on tripods making sure their shutters are firing and the exposures are looking good.  And when I see those rear LCD previews glowing with same radiance, well, that’s when I don’t mind losing a bit of sleep so much.

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First Wedding with Fuji’s X-Pro 1

Fuji recently released firmware v2.0 update for the X-Pro 1 and I’m very glad they did because it gave me enough confidence to use the camera at a wedding I photographed at the weekend. Prior to the v2.0 update, I was a bit hesitant to use it at an event such as a wedding where many of the moments I aim to capture (usually candidly) last only a few seconds. With wedding venues often being dimly lit, the main concerns for me revolved around focusing, namely:

  • The speed of focusing in low light.
  • The inability to use manual focusing due to the process of turning the focus ring feeling very detached from the lens focusing movement.
  • The EVF freeze-framing during auto-focusing.

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Sefton Park in infrared

Recently, I’ve been experimenting with photographing the landscape of Liverpool’s Sefton Park with an infrared (IR) filter mounted onto my Fuji X100.  The X100 makes for a very capable IR camera with a Hoya R72 49mm filter.  Using this combination, even in bright sunlight, often requires the use of a steady tripod (my Benro carbon fibre tripod does a fine job) due to the relatively long exposures required to capture enough of the IR light which makes it past the X100’s internal IR blocking filter.  For those times when a longer exposure is required to smooth out moving water or to make moving people disappear from the resultant image, the X100’s built-in 2-stop ND filter comes in very useful.

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Sea Odyssey – Liverpool 2012

Over the past few days (20th-23rd April), Liverpool has played host to one of the biggest street theatre productions in its history.  Street theatre company, Royal De Luxe, played out their Sea Odyssey production across the north and city centre of Liverpool using giant marionettes up to a massive 50-foot in height.

The story features a 30-foot Little Girl Giant and her quest to find her Giant Uncle who is in turn searching for her in order to deliver a letter recovered from the wreck of the sunken Titanic.  Fortunately, the Little Girl Giant wasn’t alone in her travels as she had her dog, Xolo, to accompany her around the streets of Liverpool.

It’s a sweet and heart-warming story played out on a massive scale.  Without witnessing the event for yourself, it’s almost massive beyond comprehension.  It’s reported that half-a-million people took to the streets in order to watch the event.  That in itself is an incredible attendance number for any event never mind a free event.  The event was labelled the Giant Spectacular and it was a very apt label because it was very much giant and spectacular!

I had the pleasure of attending day 2 of the 3-day production.  Here are a few photos from the day.

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