It helps to travel far to take special pictures but sometimes you can find a very special subject right around the corner.
Like those corpses that I found in an Abbey in a small town close to my home. The strange thing is that I visited the place many times but never went inside. The town is Dürnstein, one of the most beautiful places in the Wachau, an area beside the Danube famous for its dry white wine. I have tried to find some information about the jewel covered skeletons but I couldn’t find anything. If you know something about them please send me an email. There are two corpses and they are surprisingly small, almost like kids. But the people were much smaller a couple of hundred years ago.
Since I can’t say anything about them I will write something about the lens I used to take those images. It’s the kit lens, the Fuji XF 18-55 OIS. Frequent visitors of my blog know that when I shoot with Fuji I clearly prefer their prime lenses. It’s seldom that I take the kit lens on my business trips to Asia. On those trips I just prefer to keep it small and simple so it is the 14mm and either the 23mm or just the 27mm.
The Fuji XF 18-55 OIS is not a big and heavy lens and it is a solid performer. It has a rather fast AF and Image stabilization. The reason why I don’t take it with me that often is that it simply is not wide enough. A compact but high quality 16-50/4 OIS would be a different story. But unfortunately there is no such lens from Fuji.
But beside the not so practical range the kit lens is a fine lens and its a fact that image stabilization can be very useful sometimes. A lot of subjects that I shoot are static so a longer shutter speed is not an issue. For sure not for those skeletons. The longer shutter speeds allowed for lower ISO settings which helped to keep the noise at bay.
I most likely could have used an even longer shutter speeds but I always like to have some margin when it comes to camera shake. My standard minimum shutter speed when I shoot the 14mm lens is 1/50s. Only if it is very dark I go down to 1/30s. With the kit lens I shot at 1/30s and later at 1/15s with very food results. Combine image stabilization with excellent high ISO of todays cameras and you understand why you don’t see too many tripods anymore.
Even though I think that the primes are more exciting the XF 18-55 OIS on any Fuji X camera makes a compact but very versatile and very capable tool. I would have given everything to have such possibilities when I started to travel 25 years ago.