Friday, July 11, 2014

Portugal with the Fuji X-T1 and Leica M

My last week was spent in Portugal in and around Lisbon where I photographed primarily with the Fuji X-T1, a little with the Leica M, and always had the Sony RX 100 III tucked in a pocket.  The fast aperture and increased 24mm wide angle of the new Zeiss zoom on the RX 100 III came in handy every now and then when I was in dark quarters or when I needed a quick grab shot and had the wrong lens mounted on either the X-T1 or Leica M. 

On these trips I take two types of photos: I shoot in color of stock and switch to black and white for my art portfolio. One of the reasons I like shooting with the Fuji so much is that I can shoot both black & white and color at the same time by keeping it in RAW and jpg at the same time. The X-T1 also show me the exact crop I am using in the viewfinder -- very handy because I usually shoot a square format for my art portfolio and mostly 3:2 for the stock. The Leica did not show these crops in the finder so I had to rely on guesses for my crops and also had to remember what portfolio I was shooting for while editing later. Right after I finished this trip, Leica came out with a firmware update that at least provides guide lines for the various crops on the finder, but still does not transfer these crops to the final image.

For this blog post I am showing only the color images, mostly done for stock. In the next blog post I will put up the monochrome images done for my platinum portfolio. 

This photo was taken looking westward from Cabo Da Boca, the farthest western land point in Europe. As I looked out to the open Atlantic towards the Americas, I could only imagine what the early explorers must have thought looking out over the same scene but without the knowledge of the land that lay beyond. I tried to recreate something of the mysteriousness they must have felt by augmenting the haze almost to the point of whiteness on the horizon. 

The farthest point of land that extends to the west of Europe, Cabo Da Boca, is pictured in the background with the Atlantic Ocean and coastline of Portugal in the foreground. Taken with the Fuji 18-55mm zoom and a polarizing filter to deepen the sky and sea.

The Belém Tower in Lisbon juts out into the Rio Tejo. I was lucky enough to have the old sailing ship pass by it early in the morning and grabbed the shot with the Fuji 55-200mm zoom on the X-T1.

Portugal is known for its beautiful ceramic tile work, and that on the sides of the Santa Lucia Church in Lisbon is especially famous and its traditional blue color contrasted nicely with the purple flowers on vines covering the sides of the church. Taken with the 18-55mm lens on the Fuji X-T1 on a rare, cloudy day.

These trams are a typical means of transport in Lisbon. This one is coming down from the Santa Luzia church shown in the photo above this one.  The tram is rounding a bend with Lisbon's Sé (Cathedral) immediately behind it. Shot with the 18-55mm zoom at 20mm extension.

Castelo Jorge sits on a hill top of  the Alfama district overlooking Lisbon. In the evening, just as the sun was going down, the sky filled with swallows circling above it. This photo was taken from the city below with the 55-200mm zoom at full extension on the X-T1. 

I photographed from the top of the castle looking down on the city of Lisbon using the Leica M (240) -- fit here with one of my favorite travel lenses, the 21mm f/2.8 Elmarit. 

Another vista from inside the castle. This one and the image below both taken with the 35mm Summilux on the Leica M.  I also did a monochrome versions of these two scenes for my platinum portfolio, which I will be showing in the next blog post.

The new Sony RX100 III with its new wider zoom and fast apertures came in handy for shooting dimly lit interiors, such as this in the Jerónimos Monastery.

A section of the Monumento dos Descobrimentos dedicated to the famous navigators who sailed from Portugal on voyages of discovery. The map below is part of a large inlay on the ground below the statue.

The unusual art deco building is the Lisbon Rossio train station photographed at 18mm with the Fuji 18-55mm zoom. 

Outside of Lisbon, on the way to Sintra is the Queluz National Palace with French-style gardens. 

Manicured trees in the garden of Queluz. 

The Palace of Pena photographed from below using the 18-55mm zoom and polarizing filter with the X-T1 

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