Before there was Nikon (in my life), Minolta ruled the show. It was the first camera I ever used when my grandfather handed me that old metal frame monster SLR. Eventually time went on and I fell out of photography. But when I made my return, it was Nikon that had my heart.
As the years move on, I have listened to so many in the industry talk about which brand is the best. Modestly referring to the brand of their choice as "the best". But honestly, which manufacturer produces the best? It's a million dollar question, probably more. I've carefully watched many brands, slowly resonating with a few. Nikon and Sony, produce amazing colors and the dynamic range is beautiful. I've been thinking heavily about adding the Sony "A" series into my bags. Fujifilm is like the MVP of photography still sitting in the 'bullpen' waiting for the market to notice. Well, I've noticed! Believe it or not, they did come out with the first digital camera! I haven't confirmed this, but it was released well before its time, in 1988. Although it was very ugly, and didn't amount to much of anything.
Slowly, over the years, I've fallen in love with the contrast, and color renditions of Fuji sensors. I sometimes question my decision not to invest in Fuji cameras, which is a small battle in my head. Over all, the final decision had to be made. The lack of a full frame, or medium format was the hold up. I wanted more control over the depth of field and print size for my clients, among other things.
When Fujifilm released the X-T2, I was sold, sort of! I'm already vested in Nikon gear. Though looking at raw images directly out of camera, I was in love with the contrast, and colors. One thing that jumped right at me, is the ISO capability of their crop sensor. It's absolutely amazing! But, fast forward to the release of the most affordable medium format camera to date! The Fuji GFX-50s! I'm almost certain that camera is exactly what's missing from my bag. Watching the release, it's clear, Fuji has surely made a come back from its near demise. The latest in their camera line has punched the industry right where it needed. Which is really nothing new for a company who knows how to fight from a tight corner.
Quick history lesson...
The 1984 Olympics became the first big opportunity to make moves after Kodak was accused of trying to lock Fujifilm out of the U.S. market. Kodak turned down big bids to sponsor the Olympics, which is where Fuji took the opportunity to jump on the United States market. I truly believe this was a pivotal moment to keep the company thriving. This may be the moment in time which planted the seeds for anyone else who loves Fuji. During my youth, I remember using Fujifilm, just as much, if not more than the beloved Kodak. As I look back in much more detail, the color renditions of their film jumped right out at me just as there gorgeous digital sensors do today. I definitely didn't realize this until my adult years, looking back.
So maybe in the near future, there will be three major brands inside my camera bag. They always say, don't get romantic about you gear. Why not though? If, accompanied with your style of photography, produces the look and feel that you want and also need, why not? The common theme, "Gear doesn't matter" could be taken way to literal. Maybe gear does matter. It is after all, a tool. So why not have as many as possible, to leverage creative power? Just some thoughts!