I love the beach and I love wooden boardwalks so Pismo Beach seems to be the perfect spot for me.
Especially when the sun is about to set you get those beautiful shadows from the boardwalk. I put the XF 10-24/4 OIS on my X Pro-2, put the X-T1 and the 55-200 back into the shoulder bag and slowly walked back the way to our hotel.
But in June the sun goes down late and it goes down slow. We were too hungry to wait for the sun to disappear. This is how spoiled you become after two to three weeks in California. I know that back in Austria I would kill to see a sunset at the beach especially in those dark winter months but here it is easy to forget how precious those sunsets are. And we got used to the heat of 45+ degrees Celsius so the beautiful breeze from the sea almost felt chilly.
I wanted to recreate an image I shot here six years ago with my back then brand new Sony NEX 5. It was the first trip where I took a mirrorless camera with me and despite that I also brought two DSLRs (one of them full frame) I shot most of the images with the small Sony. Its lens of course was not as good as the Fuji lenses but I loved this small camera that looked like a toy but took serious images. Here is the old shot. It’s still one of my favourites shots I took at the beach. It also proofs that it’s not the camera, not even the lens that makes the shot. It’s light and the guy that pushes the knob.
FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (24mm, f/9, 1/1000 sec, ISO200)
FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (10.5mm, f/11, 1/210 sec, ISO200)
FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (10mm, f/11, 1/200 sec, ISO250)
FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (24mm, f/11, 1/950 sec, ISO200)
FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (10mm, f/11, 1/200 sec, ISO320)
Having said that it doesn’t hurt to have a good lens and a good camera. Looking at this shots on the big screen up close in Lightroom I can clearly tell that the XF 10-24/4 OIS is an excellent lens and much better than Fuji’s kit lens. Stopped down this lens even holds up to the excellent XF 16-55/2.8 WR which I think is Fuji’s finest zoom lens.
It’s just a joy to shoot with such a capable system. Our US vacation in 2016 was the first one after I fully switched to mirrorless cameras after using Fuji X cameras for some years in parallel. But that I would switch to mirrorless one day was clear to me a long time before.
It was our very first trip to the USA in 2010 when I shot this unbelievable small Sony NEX 5 beside my Canon gear. At that time it was clear to me that I will end up shooting mirrorless cameras some day.
Another thing was also clear after this first trip. My wife and I got hooked to the South West of the USA and we knew that we will return there soon. What we didn’t know back then that we would come back almost every year.
But looking at the image below which was taken from our balcony it is easy to see why.