Catching Sunflower Petals

"Multi-purpose" post in chapters.  

Chapter I
 I have never mentioned the photography equipment that I use, other than to say "Big Mama." And that is exactly what my Canon DSLR camera is...a hunkin' big camera. I also use Canon's L lens and they are beauties, but so heavy.  The combo gets to be a bit much to "shoulder" my interest has been peeked with the new compact APS-C cameras that are sprouting like tossed sunflower seeds.

After researching way too many hours, and deciding what I would sell in order to switch over, I finally decided to rent at least one camera.  Our local camera stores don't rent these as of now, which would be more convenient.  So again back to Google and finding some reputable rental businesses.  I decided upon Lens Rental. (click on name)

You must order a lens if you don't have an appropriate one in addition to camera.  I settled on a Fuji X-T1 and Fuji Prime 1:1.4  35 mm lens.  

It arrived carefully packaged...returning via Fed EX 7 days later.  I bought the insurance JUST IN CASE!  
 They emailed the pdf manual.  Oh, my goodness, over 150 pages long and teeny tiny print.  Yes, I did print it out, then proceeded to mark it up. 

In all honesty this is a big learning curve...everything is different: WEIGHT-YAY,  controls and buttons.  ( just over 1 lb. )  The bells and whistles are at first overwhelming, so I decided to start on page one of manual and go from there....working through the settings one at a time.   

Chapter II
The Sunflowers are glorious right now.  Down the road from our home is an acre of Sunflowers, they are propped in buckets at the fruit stands and  cellophane wrapped in grocery stores.  I buy a lot of Sunflowers.
 I decided to air dry the sunflowers as they withered.

Chapter III
Kim Klassen's email post for Be Still arrived.  Always fun to see what she is suggesting as a photography prompt and seeing what others do with it through link ups.
The lesson was on sharp focus.
I knew that my Canon with macro lens would do a fantastic job.  But what about the Fuji?

Chapter IV
This morning I awoke to mist and haze due to high humidity, the Fuji on the table, a vase of fresh sunflowers and a handful of drying, crumbling sunflowers.  Seemed like a good way to practice my manual reading from last night. 
These are the shots from the Fuji using macro mode. Since I shot with bokeh ( dreamy blur) and a sharp small focus, you may have to look closely for the sharply defined areas.

Macro was quite easy to set up, and this light weight, amazing camera made it possible to really get close to the subject. My first shots were disappointing. So I exchanged a white cloth for blue, put light onto subject and tried again.  Much more interesting.  The prime lens was sharp and gave beautiful color.

I can tell that should I ever switch camera gear it will be a very large investment, a large commitment of time to learn the new formats and replacing lenses. It is unfortunate that Canon, at this writing is lagging way behind Fuji, Olympus, Sony for APS-C cameras. Otherwise I wouldn't have to invest in lenses.

I loved the feel and weight of this camera.  The color is excellent.  The auto focus is fast. I was very happy with first choice. 
I might try the Olympus OM-D E-M1 at a later date.  
Lens Rental was an excellent company to rent from. However you get charged for everything separately.  Make sure you are aware of what COMES with the camera rental.  You also need to check a box to request a pdf manual.

This is just one reason why I love photography.  One of the littlest monkeys on our family tree.
SOOC shot with iPhone camera.  HMMM much less hassle than either the Canon or Fuji!!

Prime 35mm: 1.1.4  Macro setting


  1. Trying out a new system by renting first is a great idea, Sharon. My concern with the new mirrorless, compact cameras is that I understand they have no optical viewfinder. That's a problem for me, as I have a difficult time framing, focusing, etc., with a viewscreen only when outside in bright sunlight - and that's where I take most of my photos. I'm curious if that was an issue for you.

    I love these photos and your processing. My favorites are the first - with the lemon yellow sunflowers - and the last, taken with your phone camera. The simplest ways are sometimes best!

  2. I find myself using my iPhone so much more than my Canon or at least as much and those photos seem to get processed first too. I think I'm too old to try and figure out another camera system but I too have lusted over those.

  3. I still love using my iPhone for the little camera, along with my Canon T2i. Hoping to get the iPhone 6 soon.

  4. What a good way to test out a new system - to see if it is a good fit for you.

    I am finding that the convenience and ease of my brand-new smartphone is such a huge factor. Even my relatively small Olympus PEN puts a strain on my shoulder when shooting for any length of time. I'm glad I never went the DSLR route - I know that would have been way too much for me.

    Love your sunflower series - so happy!

  5. I'm envious, Sharon. I keep wondering about Fuji's and also the Sony Nex. But I'm such an amateur, it's just quite a large outlay for equipment. I recently purchased a new Canon body, so guess I won't be changing anytime soon. I do find myself opting for my iPhone a lot though because it's "instant" and I don't have to carry a lot of equipment.
    Thanks so much for the review. The picture of sunflower and grand is terrific.


Thank you for visiting my blog today. I appreciate the time you take to say hello. Warmly, Sharon