X-Pert 53 Interview
Fujifilm X-Photographer Elke Vogelsang Is A Pet Portrait Photographer Based In Hildesheim, Germany.
Elke aka Wieselblitz is a self taught photographer and pet enthusiast who works to ensure that her passion exudes through each photograph she takes making every one a unique and individual expression of her love for her craft. She is bound to make certain that her clients are as elated about her final results as she is. Elke also loves to take photographs of her favourite subjects and family members, Noodles, Scout and Loli, her 3 Spanish rescue dogs and 53mm is pleasured to meet them in the series of photographs that follow along with being immensely appreciative of her superbly comprehensive set of answers to the X-pert 53 interview.
Here is Elke's X-pert 53.
1. What Genre Of Photography Do You Specialise In?
Pet and people photography, but best known for my dog portraits.
2. Why Do You Like Using The XF35mm Lenses?
When I got my first Fujifilm X camera, which was a Fujifilm X-M1, I bought two prime lenses with it, the Fujinon XF 18mm and the Fujinon XF 35mm. Professionally I was still shooting with Canon. But for my personal projects and for holidays I wanted something more light-weight and handy. The 18mm was meant to be used for landscape photography and quirky dog portraits and the 35mm for portraits and reportage pictures. As I was already very well equipped with my Canon gear, I didn’t want to invest too much and didn’t get any zoom lenses.
The 35mm reproduces a field of view that appears natural to us, thus allows for a natural representation of the subject with least perspective distortion. It is versatile standard lens and can be used for all sorts of subjects. But as it doesn’t add dramatic angles you can’t use perspective tricks to add drama. I love to challenge myself. The normal focal length makes you think about your photography and your positioning. You have to compose your picture clearly to come up with an interesting composition and to make sure your subject, lighting and scene speak for themselves. In the past I nearly entirely used a tele lens for elegant portraits and a wide-angle lens for quirky looking portraits. I was stuck in a routine. I hardly ever used the normal focal length. But I do believe in leaving your comfort zone and challenging yourself you improve your photography and your way to see shots. Now the 35mm is my favorite lens. I now switched from Canon to Fujifilm for most of my work and don’t regret it.
3. What Do You Like Photographing The Best With Your XF35mm Lens/Lenses? Why Your Choice?
I shoot all kinds of subjects with it. As my favorite subjects are dogs, it is often used for dog portraits.
Why Your Choice?
I’m near enough to the dog to be in close contact and interact with the dog, but I also get a perspective that’s pleasing to the eye, without distortions of the dog’s physiognomy. With my dslr equipment I usually reached for a tele lens to separate the subject from the background by using a tele focal length. With f1.4 the 35mm offers a wonderful bokeh and small depth of field.
4. Do You Shoot Professionally With The XF35mm Lenses?
Yes, I do. I sell the pictures of my dogs. Lots of the pictures in my licensing archive were shot with a 35mm. Furthermore, the 35mm lens is my primary lens for wedding photography.
5. Fuji XF35mm F/1.4 Or Fuji XF35 F/2? Why The Choice?
With my Canon lenses I usually didn’t use apertures below f2, as they tend to be a bit too blurry to my taste. But Fujinon lenses are pin-sharp even at f1.4. As I use the lens for wedding photography in dark churches, being able to use f1.4 is of great benefit. Nevertheless, I heard that the autofocus of the f2 is faster. This would be a great advantage, as I find the f1.4 to be a bit on the slow side, especially in darker surroundings.
6. How Often Do You Reach For Your XF35mm Lens/Lenses?
It is the lens that I usually have attached to my camera. It’s my preferred lens for all kinds of subjects, therefore, I use it very often.
7. Could You Live With Just An XF35mm Lens In Your Photography Bag?
I could live with it, but still, I love using different focal lengths to achieve different effects. But I guess if somebody told me that I can take only one camera with one lens with me, I guess this would be the Fujifilm X-Pro2 with the Fujinon 35mm.
8. Do You Like To Use Available Light Or Studio Light With Your XF35mm Lens/Lenses?
Because of the large aperture of f1.4 I love to use it with natural light, especially indoors. Nevertheless, I often use it in the studio, too.
9. What Fuji-X Camera Body Do You Prefer To Use The XF35mm Lenses On? Why Your Choice?
My favourite Fujifilm X camera is the Fujifilm X-Pro2.
Why Your Choice?
The quality of the pictures are great. I also love the Fujifilm X-T1 because of the tilting display, though. I usually photograph dogs from a very low viewpoint and for this the tilting display is perfect.
10.Do You Have Any Favourite Photographs Using The XF35mm Lenses?
I shot the picture Invincible Summer with the 35mm. It was shot with available light in my natural light studio with the light coming from a window to the right on an overcast day. The large aperture makes it possible even to shoot in darker surroundings. The picture was shot with the basic but good Fujifilm X-M1 and the Fujinon 35mm and it ended up as the cover of the biggest US dog magazine.
The picture Hedge Troll was also shot with the 35mm. The hedge my dog is in is actually only a small bush, higher than wide. 35mm were perfect for framing this shot by leaving out the edges of the hedge.
All three of my dogs are very eager to pose for my camera, they learnt to act and love it as they always get huge rewards. I don’t need an assistant to take portraits of my dogs. With the 35mm I’m near enough to interact and communicate with them in a relaxed way, and, probably most importantly for my dogs: I’m able to hand over the treats immediately. ;-)
Especially Scout’s steadiness and patience are absolutely amazing (Scout is the light colored dog).
This is also of great benefit with other dogs. I’m not too close, but am able to communicate from a short distance. For very shy dogs a tele lens and the support of the owner might be the better option, though.