Photography : "Live and Uncut" - Episode 57 with Karen Hutton

Welcome back Karen.


It was great to have Karen Hutton on my show this week, even if it was just to say , "Welcome back Karen'! ( Karen Hutton is the voice of the Stuck on Earth App.)

But in reality this was an important show! Karen has been blogging recently about her experiences of her gear transition from Canon to a mirrorless system and she seems to of found an affinity with the Fuji X system. As you know I too use Fuji, so I was very keen to get Karen back on the show to talk about the gear change. It just so happened that Karen had just returned from a holiday which had included a workshop with Valerie Jardin ( another Fuji user) in Paris. This had given Karen a real opportunity to test out the fuji gear that she had bought plus the new Fuji X-T10 which had been given to her to test by Fuji US.

Karen has a superb personality that exudes an infectious passion in the art of photography, that is seldom seen. For her to consider a gear change is not a flippant thing. In photography terms she is not a 'gear head' but a photographer that needs equipment to work and feel right with her. She realised that the considerable weight that her Canon gear had become something that had to change, and so her search for lighter equipment began.

A number of her photography friends were using the Sony A7 series camera so it made sense for her to try that system first. But here's the thing, Karen found it just did not work for her. To my mind this is an important point. You cannot make a camera work for you. it has to feel right in the hands; weight, balance with and without a lens on, performance and of course image quality. Although image quality was good Karen found that other issues did not suit her. As its been mentioned before the lens stable of Sony is a bit short at the moment. Third party lenses was an option with an adapter but generally that means manual focus and that did not suit Karen.

The next system to consider was Fuji and I suppose the next one down the line would have been the 4/3rd system of either Lumix and Olympus.

But with the Fuji? Well her search stopped right there and then!

She bought into the Fuji X system with the Fuji X-T1, the xf 10-24, xf 16-55 and the xf 55-200mm lenses. 

Literally on the first viewing of an image straight out of camera of her X-T1, as she says, 'her jaw dropped' - She just couldn't believe the quality of the image from the 1.5 crop X-Trans Sensor. I firmly believe that the bias of the sensor toward green is the main factor for this and is probably the reason why a landscape photographer would be impressed by the image quality. She was well on the road now with her blog describing her thoughts of the gear change and what she was experiencing. The blog got spotted by Fuji and they offered her join the X-pro users in the US. Fuji are one of these companies that are happy with exposure , honesty in opinion and listen to their users. Karen quickly became aware that this was a company that she would be happy to be associated with. Realising that Karen was about to set out on a street workshop and a two week holiday in France with family and friends Fuji offered her the new X-T10 with the xf 27mm (pancake lens) just to try out and comment on.

I'll leave you to link up with Karen's blog where she goes into great detail of this transition (link below - Karens blog) but suffice to say both cameras the X-T1 and the X-T10 have proved to be ideal for Karens work. Plus the advantage of having lighter gear to carry around. For her street workshop experience a lot of her image making was with the X-T10 and the 27mm lens. I'm not surprised by that as knowing Valerie as I do, (Valerie uses the X100s) Karen would have been encouraged to walk about with the minimalist of gear. Interesting to note here, I got the impression from Karen's comments that the X-T10 had become her 'go to camera'.

We went to screen-share to look at some recent high ISO images taken in Paris at Le Foyer. Well you could of fooled me! High ISO 6400 etc? I couldn't see any noise, unless Karen, as in some cases had added a little grain to add to the image. I have to be honest here. I use 6400 iso setting on my X100s and X-E1 extensively and the noise (?) it didn't surprise me. (Well - its not noise) It's more like film grain. The Fuji sensor is quite remarkable in its performance. I'm not the only one saying this... Karen did and many other Fuji users that I have had on Live and Uncut say the same. The images were outstanding - with very little editing, something which Karen says she is going to have to get used to - unlike her Canon images!

All in all it was a great show to hear a new photographer 'get into' Fuji in a very big way, and if the truth be known her journey with the Fuji's has only just begun! She now embarks on creating landscapes, panorama's of the countryside and making images of the on coming Monsoon season about to hit her local area.

Karen it was a pleasure to talk to you on Live and Uncut again - Enjoy your Fuji's!


Until next time " Leave your camera bag at home"


The all important links.


Photography Live and Uncut with Karen Hutton

The Karen Hutton website

Karen on Google+

The Karen Hutton blog

Karen on Twitter

Karen on Facebook

Karen on Instagram