I was recently in Europe and spent almost all the time with the X-Pro2 and the original (and still one the best) 18mm F2 lens.

I’m a great believer that a good picture is made up of good light, composition and moment.  Its not always possible, of course, to get all three of those – especially when shooting candidly on the streets.

I have a selection of images here though that I like, and I like primarily because of the light.

In order to shoot these images, I generally spot meter, record the exposure and dial it in manually.

All these images were shot with X-Pro2 and the 18mm lens and I really believe that that lens is one of the most underrated in the Fuji line up.

Mostly the images were shot in late afternoon when the light was good and warm.
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  • nsm

    Can you share if these were jpg in camera and shadow/highlight settings? Thanks.

    • These are JPEGs but slightly warmed up in LR. +3 shadows, -2 highlights, +2 Colours +2 Sharpness.

    • Thomas Bogelund

      GREAT WORK Kevin!!
      Could you put the usual info underneath the pictures… shutter speed, etc..
      Again very nice work and a great blog… best blog I ever follow….

      • Thanks Thomas – yes, I forgot the EXIF on these. I’ll try and add them….

  • Keshav

    Hi,
    Can you please throw some light on how you “spot meter” and what figures you rolled with for example?

    Great pictures and thank you!

    • I typically spot meter for the highlight, then take a note of the exposure and dial that in manually. As long as the light stays the same, the exposure should be good to go.

      • Jake

        Hi Kevin – what do you mean by “take a note of the exposure and dial that in manually”? Do you mean you measure the light using the “spot meter” in the P mode and then you set the shutter speed and aperture manually to what the meter showed? Great work!!

        • Yes, exactly that – though I’ll be using aperture priority and lock the exposure in manually once I’ve allowed the camera to give it to me.

          • Jesse chan

            Hi Kevin, Could you please explain what you mean by “I lock the exposure in manually”? If you were to explain the process in a very basic way, that would be very helpful.

          • Hi Jesse – by this I mean I look to see what exposure the camera has suggested, then put those settings in physically (Shutter, Aperture etc). I’ll use the dials to set those so they can’t change.

  • Jermaine

    A great set. Just curious: are you shooting from the hip in some of these? I’m curious about the low angle and whether you’re looking through the viewfinder or LCD. I’d appreciate your thoughts, especially the latter using the X-Pro2.

    • Yes, almost all of these are zone focused and shot with the camera down at chest height or even lower.

  • Kevin, as usual, great shots!
    I’m used to seeing your images in B&W. Do you think the 18 mm would work just as well in B&W? All of a sudden I feel that’s a stupid question … but there it is!
    Thanks.

    • Thanks Luis – its odd, but most of my wedding and family work is black and white, yet my street stuff I tend to lean towards more colour. I’m a Martin Parr fan!!

      I use the 18mm a lot at weddings too and of course, yes, it makes a fine lens but really its the picture that decides whether its better in mono or colour.

  • Awesome pictures Kevin. I really like the 18mm as well. In my Nord Italy trip I will take only the XF 18mm and 55-200 to north Italy. Less is more.

  • William Allbrook

    Hi Kevin

    I am trying hard to let the camera do all the work because I am not interested in spending hours with LR or CO etc. Most of the time I am really happy and it is helping me improve as a photographer, albeit an amateur one! The JPEGS out of the camera are really impressive. I’d be interested to know how much you use these in your photography and how well you think the Fuji kit delivers out of the camera.

    Thanks

    • Hi William – almost all my work is shot as JPEG. Occasionally I turn to raw, but for me, raw is the backup format – JPEG is the key.

  • Norbert

    Hi Kevin,

    great shots! I love your B&W work, but your colour shots are marvellous, too! The colours are greatly composed. Thx for sharing them, very inspiring work as always

  • oooh, thanks for sharing these lovely set of color pictures. I have the 16-55mm zoom so my friend “made” me sell her my 18mm. What was I thinking! Ha ha. Happy for her, but now I really really miss that awesome little lens. I hope my future 16mm helps me get over my loss 😉

  • Bonnie lou Feld

    hi Kevin,
    I love your photos in an emotional and passionate way, and have just boxed up all my Canon gear. Kind of sad to let go of it, but I have come over to Fuji and the beautiful primes! I just shot my first wedding with an X100T (no converters) and a new XT-2. I got some really beautiful shots and mostly “keepers.” And here is my question:
    Can you tell me what settings you use for the Continuous Shooting mode at weddings? Do you use Zone or single? And which continuous shooting Custom Setting do you use? I got enough blurry photos in Continuous Shooting, and maybe I need to tweak some of my settings. I will be so grateful to hear your thoughts and information and know from every post I’ve read from you, you are generous with your information. I read all the wedding posts many times before I shot this last wedding! Very Helpful!
    Thanks Kevin.

    • Hi Bonnie,

      I use single and the custom setting is not available in the XP2 (just the XT2 – assuming I’m thinking of the same thing as you!)……

  • Serge

    Superb site and works, Kevin!

    I have a slightly “noobish” question regarding spot metering – when you meter using this method are you always metering for the asphalt/concrete within the scene or specifically on the subject(s)?
    If you meter off the concrete, all you have to do is just to make sure that the given exposure will set the light meter at “0”? in case of metering subjects what’s the proper way to do it? obviously not everything is middle gray…

    Thanks in advance and keep up your amazing work!

    • Hi Serge – for these types of images I will meter for the highlight area in the ground and then wait for the subject to come along using a zone focus area. I’m not metering for the people as I want to catch them often as they break from the shadow into the highlight areas.

  • Hello Kevin,

    Love your color captures, stunning as you said that they’re jpgs with slight processing. I know that fuji’s jpgs are awesome (I shoot with a XE2 and 18mm f2), but I still shoot raw and post process in LR. I’m at this time in the mood of your present photographs. I’m also having fun capturing people when they break from teh shadow into the light.
    Cheers
    Jeff

  • Nigel Howard

    Trent Parke’s colour work often has a similar drama. Really great stuff Kevin!