Back in September I was invited by Fujifilm to give a couple of presentations at Photokina, in Koln, Germany.

It was a great week and I managed to get time to watch presentations from some of my favourite photographers shooting with Fuji’s, including but not limited to my friends Jonas Rask, Bert Stephani and Zack Arias.

All the presentations were amazing and I love watching how different photographers use the Fuji system to produce their work.

Shortly before the event, Fuji asked me to try and demonstrate how the X-Pro2 can be used, reliably, to shoot a whole wedding.

So, I did something I’ve never done before and made a photo-film based on every frame shot at the wedding I had the previous weekend.

Those of you who read my wedding photography site may have seen this before, but I wanted to share it here with a few more details for context.

Before watching the photo-film its worth noting a few things;

  • In order to really show the durability of shooting with the X-Pro2’s I overshoot completely.  There is over 4,000 frames in the film, whereas its  rare for me to shoot more than 1,500 frames at a regular wedding.
  • The images in the film are unedited and untreated.  It’s a warts and all presentation.
  • Apart from the bridal recessional, its all shot on single shot mode.  The recessional is shot using AF-C and CH.
  • I used three batteries throughout the whole day (a fourth was being used by the end).
  • The confetti sequence was shot on the X-T2 and the there are around 10 frames in the collection shot using the X70.
  • The images are low resolution.  It’s just not realistically possible to do this in any useful time frame with full size files.
  • You can see the exposure and White Balance shifts (especially during the service) that would normally be mitigated in post processing.

You can see the blog post about this French wedding on my website.

The film is only a few minutes long but it’s quite quick & certainly better with audio turned up.

In order to produce the film, I dropped all the images in Premiere Pro.  They didn’t go via Lightroom.  It took about two hours for Premiere Pro to render the movie file.

I actually thought long and hard about doing this in the first place, and even longer about publishing it, but I think, by and large, it gives a pretty good indication of how reactionary the Fuji X-Pro2 can be for people who shoot in a documentary / reportage style.

  • Wow! your hit rate is incredible, an education in finding the interest in every moment.

  • Hi Kevin.

    Always a treat for the eye and the soul. I’m freshly inspired to do more photography in 2017 in the reportage style. Weddings? Maybe too big a leap for me. I might see if I can crash one or two and see what I might do with my original x100 (firmwared up to 2.10). I am going to be a grandparent next month, so I will be getting some shots of the new arrival for sure.

    A very Merry Christmas to you and yours and best wishes for 2017

    Kev B

  • Ha! I loved watching that, the music was perfect. Really great to see your work in full like that, well done Kevin 🙂

  • That was fantastic.

    Captured so much spirit – better than most ‘conventional’ videos 🙂

    Cheers!!

  • I always like what you share with us. I made my life in engineering but alway shot on the weekends. I wish I had equipment like this when I photographed weddings and shot for a weekly. I have been retired for 11 years now, and do street photography. Because I am using Fujifilm Pro 2, people think I am using film. People stop me and ask about the camera. Last week a company hired me to shoot a ice skating party. I told them that I had a new system and at first turned them down, but they wouldn’t take no for an answer. So while I had started with the Pro 1, early in 2016, I took all my m 4/3 gear, sold it and bought the Pro 2. While the lighting was bad the Pro 2 worked well and the client love the images. My street work keeps getting better as well. I only have the 35mm f/2.0 and the 27mm lens, so I need to figure what to purchase next for the street, or my next client. I have been into photography for over 55 years, and this is the best equipment I have ever used.

    • Thanks Chuck – the xp2 is a great camera indeed.

  • That was awesome. I’ve never used the burst function but now I really want to try it out. Out of curiosity, how many shots did the couple get out of all those great moments? It must have been difficult to choose. Thanks for sharing.

    • Thanks John. The clients got this film (of course), along with the normal wedding delivery of prints / albums etc.

  • This is inspiring work. I’m always amazed by the quality of your B&W “out of the camera”.
    Merry X-Mas.

  • Stunning images! Unedited, all B&W from jpg?

    • Thanks Giacomo – actually, in this case I shot RAW as was required for the Photokina presentation. I used Premiere Pro to apply a base conversion.

  • Hi Kevin,
    That was very enjoyable and insightful. Am I correct to deduct that the majority of shots were with 16mm and 23mm lenses?

  • (Bows deep) Domo arigato, Sensei!

  • André Avon

    Hi Kevin, you where not kidding when you say this would be fast, wow. Very impressive, not only the xpro2, but your image making, seems like your always in the right place. I am a finished fan of yours.

    Thanks for sharing this, cheers, André

  • Your work is once again an inspiration for me and obviously for all the other wedding photographers out there. I did little films with Premiere Pro twice this year but would never have thought about using all frames from the day…. Thanks for giving this kind of input!!! Really appreciated!!!! Not only is the idea of this film stunning, your pictures are awesome again!
    Thank you very much for sharing!

    Marcus

  • Really interesting Kevin, I’ve just purchased my first Fuji camera (XT2) and really do love it. I’m a little nervous to get rid of the Canon just yet, but the more I use the fuji, the most excited about photography I feel. Gives me more and more confidence when I see great work like your produced with the Fuji.

  • This is really nice Kevin. I’m in crossroads to switch from Canon. I’m torn between Nikon D750 and Fuji XT2. Hired 750 for latest wedding and really loved dynamic range. Can’t hire XT2 to try out 🙁 My only worry really about XT2 is off camera triggering and use of on camera flash too. Plus focusing as well. Tried XT1 in calumet and performance was pretty poor. How is it on XT2?

    Thank you Kevin for sharing this.

    • Thanks Armands – I managed to shoot for two years with a pair of XT1s without any issues. That said,the XT2 is a step up. I personally prefer the X-Pro2 however.

  • Eva

    This looks fantastic [and the choice of music is PERFECT!]!!I got myself xt-1 earlier this year, thinking about switching from Canon but I have to say I’m not that ecstatic with its performance in low light and that is crucial for me for weddings. I definitely want to test the xt-2 tho. Now I’m sure. Thanks for sharing, I totally get how uncomfortable it is to show unedited work 🙂

    • Thanks Eva. You’ll find the XT2 is a much better performer in low light than the XT1.

  • Great video but more important are the photos. Recently discovered your site/work and am continuously inspired to go out and shoot people and capture …. “moments”.

    Question: what is the music/soundtrack to the video?

    • Thanks Hans. I forget the name but its a royalty free track from Music Bed,.

      • Thanks – much appreciated.
        Best wishes to you and yours for a happy, healthy, and safe new year.

        • Steven Gutheinz – Balboa 🙂

  • Paul

    Hi Kevin, love your photos but cant watch this video -that burst speed is very unpleasant to both eyes and mind…epilepsy starter 🙂

  • Adrian

    Hi Kevin,

    Very inspired indeed! wondering how many frames per second did you specify in Premiere?

    • I didn’t do it that way Adrian. These are all stills, so I imported the images at 0.25 seconds per image.

  • Gene

    Pretty amazing! I’m an X-PRO2 owner (times 2) which I absolutely love so this was a definite treat to see how they versatile and how they function under pressure of an assignment. I’ve got a small wedding to shoot in Feb 2017 that I had planned to use my OMD EM1 kit to shoot but now I’m going to use the X-PRO2s as I like shooting with them so much better. They just feel so right in my hand and the images look just like I previsioned to them.

    Thanks for the inspiration.

  • Amazing skills, Kevin. More important than the cameras are your impeccable sense of timing and moments – a rare find in most wedding photographers today. Honestly, you could shoe with a Holga and iPhone and still put out great results.

    On a side note:
    Are you shooting the XP2 with EVF or OVF mostly? I gave the EVF in my x100t and X-Pro 2 a try for a few 12 hour jobs but it gave me headaches.

    • Thanks Stan. These days I mostly use the evf as the refresh rate is amazing. When the light gets very low or I want to shoot a bit quicker, then I’ll use the OVF. I like to the use the OVF when I have time to consider a composition properly too.

  • Nick Strugnell

    Kevin
    I think you have hit upon a new ‘style’ you can offer clients. Forget the videographer and have the ‘old time film look! Serioulsy, I thought it was magic, as would your clients. Huge strain on you and the cameras but worth it. Love the look and feel especially the evening stuff.

    • Thanks Nick. It’s a huge job – not sure the return on investment would be worthwhile….

      • Nick Strugnell

        Ha, ha… Know all about effort+time not always as financially rewarding as it should be 😉

        On a slightly different note, I have recently transitioned from Nikon D800 into Fuji for my work and like it so far, apart from the usual learning curve. I tried the Acros simulation and as lovely as it is I found it to be quite ‘noisey’ compared to standard B&W. Is there any way to reduce the Acros noise or is it baked in? Cheers

        • Acros has noise in the simulation. There is also a “grain” setting in the menu. Make sure that is OFF when shooting with Acros as you’ll be adding digital noise to the ingrained noise.

  • Hi Kevin, I follow your inspiring work since about 1 year. I’m really curious about your workflow when you decide (often) to warm tone in the black&white shots, this was the case too.
    Many thanks.
    Marcello

    • Hi Marcello – yes, all my work has a warm tone. These are unedited though so it hasn’t been applied. Thanks

  • This is amazing, Kevin. If I was your client I would totally buy this lovely little film as an add on. It’s so interesting to see how you approach the day and yeah, as someone else said, your hit rate is incredible.

  • andy

    Kevin
    Fantastic insight into your technique for shooting weddings. plus your F16 web is i think one of the best resources on the web for shooting with fuji cameras. i’ve been using a fuji since the xpro1 and then upgraded to the xpro2 , which at first i didnt like due to the images being (if that’s possible too sharp) or maybe better described as too digital.
    Only once i used your film simulation specific settings as basic guide did i really understand the power of the xpro2 and the film simulations. and now have the camera setup to my taste.
    Its maybe taken me a year to really get to gripes with xpro2 and appreciate what a fantastic camera it is. due mainly to your website.
    keep up the great work and happy new year.

    • Thanks Andy – that’s really kind and I’m glad you find the site useful.

  • Wow such a brilliant film. It’s a fantastic insight in to your work – Thanks for sharing!

  • This was really fun. I don’t know if I got this impression because as you say you overshot, but my takeaway fwas the value of staying still and waiting for the moment rather than chasing it down.

    Something I’ve very much been thinking about with my own work.

    Very cool, thanks.

  • Having attended a wedding as a guest on the weekend, taking a thousand photos (micro four thirds cameras), I’m so inspired by what you did with this. It does feel a little overwhelming, in the sense that the frame moves about quite a lot, but it tells the story of the day more fluently than stills or video would. Thank you so much for sharing.

  • Hi Kevin,

    First off beautiful video! I really loved the atmosphere the music gave to the whole set. I was truly inspired.

    Second, as I was reading your article, it caught my eye your comment that you used a total of 3 batteries only throughout your entire day. I’m curious because, although I’m a full believer in Fuji and have been a converter for a while, my biggest challenge has always been battery life. It was the reason why I sold my X-Pro2 against my heart’s content to buy an X-T2 and why even with the X-T2 I still carry around 6 spares even for the smallest half day gig that I might get (mind you I shoot concerts and festivals, not weddings, so I’m working with high FPS and the boost mode in the X-T2 to squeeze the highest AF performance out the the system as possible). Still, I’ve shot small events, as I said, that required me to swap batteries at least a couple of times.

    I’m sure you don’t let your camera go to sleep as to not miss the moment. Also, I figure you’d use the EVF on longer lenses too, which takes up plenty of battery life in my experience with the X-Pro2. So what’s your secret? Do you set it to low performance mode? Any tips? I hope you don’t take it the wrong way, I’m just curious. Like I said, I sold my X-Pro2 almost solely based on the battery life issues I was having.

    Anyways, keep on the good work, I love your website and read it regularly!

    Cheers, V

  • Kristo

    Hi Kevin,
    I don’t understand what you mean by single shot mode. Do you combine this with AF-S or AF-C? Since most photo series seem to follow in a short time-span, it seems like you have to push the shutter button a lot. Thank you for explaining this.
    Great work by the way!
    Kristo

    • Singel shot is when you press the shutter button once to shoot. Continuous is when the camera will track the subject and shoot like a machine gun. Useful for sports or wildlife, but not the way to do things are weddings in my mind.

  • Hi Kevin

    Fabulous imagery as always – I am a huge fan of your work and your creative vision.
    I was actually one of the lucky guys to try out the Fuji X100F with you and the Fuji guys at Cameraworld in London
    last Friday – now seriously considering adding one to my kit bag to compliment the Fuji kit I already own
    Time did not allow me to ask you this last Friday, but could you explain briefly how you were approached to become a Fuji ambassador…?

    With best wishes.
    Darren Miles

    • Hi Darrn – I was asked to be an X-Photographer back in 2012 by Fujifilm in advance of what was then Focus on Imaging.

  • Hi Kevin,

    Just come across this post. I can understand how disarming it is to show an entire day’s unedited shots. But as much as it shows the power of the XPro-2, it really exhibits your immense quality as a photographer. As several have said, the hit rate is astonishing, both in terms of capturing ‘the moment’ and high quality framing/composition. Bravo.

    Lucy

  • John Fiott

    Absolutely loved the video.

    Like many said you somehow manage to be in the right place at the right time so often!

    Presumably you don’t get much time to fiddle about with the knobs to adjust aperture and shutter speed and ISO, so do you decide on the settings before each sequence of shots and leave them fixed for the duration of the scene or is it a quick adjustment/check per photo? And is it a fixed ISO throughout so you only need to concentrate on the other two variables? Also do you use flash or rely on available lighting?

    Thanks.

    John

    • Hi John & Thanks.

      Firtstly, I use flash as little as possible. In this wedding, I didn’t use it at all. The lights from the band were suffient.

      I shot a lot of this wedding in “P” mode. There will be some professionals rolling their eyes now, but I’m a firm believer in letting the camera do what its good at (choosing correct exposure) and I’ll do what I’m (hopefully) good at (looking for sequences).

      Cheers

  • John

    That is a very inspiring reply Kevin. I like the commonsense logic. But do you at least choose your preferred ISO?

    • Kind of. I use a range of Auto ISOs and I toggle between them using the Custom Settings.

      For example, I have one that I use for “fast moving, good light stuff” – Min Shutter 1/200, then another for low light “min shutter 1/60”.

      I use Auto ISO almost all the time…. its very useful, especially with an EVF where you can see the exposures at time of shooting.

  • Brett Patching

    Hi Kevin,

    Thanks so much for sharing this! Seeing all the frames in sequence gives a wonderful insight into your choice of camera angles and viewpoints for each location and situation throughout the wedding.

    I’m just curious: did you use the 23mm f1.4 or f2 throughout the day?

    • Hi Brett – this was all way before the f2 lens was around. Cheers