Derek Clark

X-Pert 53 Interview


Fujifilm X-Photographer derek clark Is A photographer of many talents. His photography ranges from music photography to travel photography, to portraits, to street photography and reportage.  He Is Also A Member Of The International Photographers Group, The Kage Collective (Pronounced Ka-Gay). He Is Based In the motherwell area of central scotland.

I couldn't be happier that Derek agreed to take on the X-pert 53 Interview. In fact I am over the moon that 5 of the 8 members of the Kage Collective have this month, shared their experiences with and thoughts about the XF35mm lenses. Derek's work in outstanding and his new website which now homes all of his work is a port of call for any photographer interested in furthering their photography, let alone Fuji-X photography, because his eclectic mix of genres and styles is a masterclass in how to do it and do it well. In particular, Derek's music photography captures the audio essence of the moment and the musicians he has had the pleasure of photographing is inspired in itself. It's a real pleasure having him answer the X-pert 53 Interview.

Here is Derek's X-pert 53.

1. What Genre Of Photography Do You Specialise In?

I'm a documentary photographer that shoots a lot of Music, Portraits & Street Photography. That would be my main areas, but I shoot other things too. If it interests me, I'll shoot it.

2. Why Do You Like Using The XF35mm Lenses?

It's sort of the Swiss Army Knife of lenses. Wide is wide and tele is tele, but the old school fast 50 sits in the middle, a jack of all trades. If I want to just shoot with a single body, the 35mm is the one I usually go for.

3. What Do You Like Photographing The Best With Your XF35mm Lens/Lenses? Why Your Choice?

Mostly portraits and documentary. (It's a longer focal length than I would typically use to shoot street)

Why Your Choice?

For portraits, it's the lowest focal length I will use when shooting a subject against a background. Wider than the 35mm would through the background too far back.
For documentary, a fast aperture and the ability to get in close without intimidating a subject with a huge lens is essential.

4. Do You Shoot Professionally With The XF35mm Lenses?


5. Fuji XF35mm F/1.4 Or Fuji XF35 F/2? Why Your Choice?

If I could only have one 35mm lens, it would have to be the f1.4.

Why Your Choice?

I do a lot of shooting in low light. I like the focus performance of the f2, but I like the physical shape and speed of the f1.4. Especially the speed.
I'm hoping Fuji will make a mkII version of the 1.4 (and the 18mm) with the internal focusing and performance of the f2.

6. How Often Do You Reach For Your XF35mm Lens/Lenses?

I reach for one of the 35mm lenses a lot.
I have a bag with my working kit, which has two X-T1’s and six lenses. This is the bag I keep the 35mm f1.4 in. I reach for it a lot when doing portraits if the space is too tight for the 56mm f1.2 or if there is more than one subject against a background. If I'm shooting music events and it's too dark for my 50-140mm f2.8, I'll switch to the 35/1.4 or the 56/1.2
I also have a small every day bag with my X100T and either an X-E2 or X-Pro2 body. This is the bag I keep the 35/2 in. That gives me a choice of 35 and 50mm (FF) focal lengths for street or whatever comes up. I always have two cameras with me 24hrs a day.

7. Could You Live With Just An XF35mm Lens In Your Photography Bag?

I wouldn't need a bag if I only had a single 35mm - there's a thought.
I have a fantasy of just having one camera and one lens. No distraction and I would know that kit inside out and I would know exactly what was in the viewfinder before it reached my eye. The 35mm would be the perfect focal length for a single lens kit.
But I shoot so many different things that I need multiple cameras and multiple focal lengths. Maybe one day!

8. Do You Like To Use Available Light Or Studio Light With Your XF35mm Lens/Lenses?

Either/or actually. I consider myself a natural light shooter, but I do a lot of studio type stuff too. It's sort of two opposites really and I'm comfortable in both worlds.

9. What Fuji-X Camera Body Do You Prefer To Use The XF35mm Lenses On? Why Your Choice?

I like the 35/1.4 on the X-Pro2 and the 35/2 on the X-E2.

Why Your Choice?

I think the f2 is physically a bit small on the X-Pro2 body, but perfect on the X-E2.

10.Do You Have Any Favourite Photographs Using The XF35mm Lenses?

Yes I have a few, but a couple that spring to mind are the the hand reaching out from a hole in the rock, or the one in Venice where the man is trying to photograph his wife and the Asian guy stops between them to light his cigarette.

11.Finish This Line: The Fuji XF35mm Lenses Are…

... sharper than a sharp thing and creamier than a creamy thing.