Kevin Mullins

I’m a full time reportage wedding photographer based in Wiltshire, UK. I’ve been shooting weddings since around 2008 and I shoot predominantly black and white, but always candid, storytelling photographs.

For me, it’s really important that a photograph is authentic, sympathetic and uncontrived. Whilst there are some superb artistic wedding photographers out there, I’m really only interested in the actual moments as they unfold. I don’t direct, move or prompt my clients in any way. I don’t ask the guests to “look at me” and I try and remain as unobtrusive as reasonably possible.

My primary objective is to give the clients a set of images that return them back to that very moment in time at their wedding. I concentrate primarily on emotion, eye contact, love, humour and the exhibition of humanity at weddings. A simple hand gesture or shift of the eyes can turn an otherwise uninteresting image into one that I (and hopefully the clients) will love forever. A look. That’s all it takes to make a moment right?

So, for me, I started my career with Canon 5D ‘s and they were and still are great cameras. However, as I progressed and my style evolved I found myself getting closer and closer to the subjects during the day. My big DSLRs were interfering with the way I could work. I simply couldn’t get the images I wanted, and in some cases the presence of me and my bulky DSLR actually interfered with the moment – and the dynamic of the moment changed, and almost always for the worst.

So, along came the Mirrorless revolution and from an early date I pinned my flags to the Fujifim wall. I’ve watched the cameras grow and evolve into a fully functional professional system that is pretty much next to perfect for the way that I shoot.

I travel light and work quickly. Size and weight are paramount. I also shoot with two focal lengths only. 35mm and 85mm in Full Frame terms. Even when I shot Canon I only used the 35mm and 85mm lenses.

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Here is a breakdown of my wedding day kit:

Cameras:

I have two Fujifilm X-T1 ‘s. These are the latest in the Fujifilm interchangeable X range and, in my opinion, the best of the iteration to date. The amazingly huge viewfinder and excellent focus tracking make the cameras perfect companions for the lenses I use. Ultimately, these cameras are around half the size and weight of my old kit and I can easily shoot 12 hour weddings without any back or neck issues. Crucially though, they get me in close.

I also use a Fujifilm X100S. If I could only have one camera in the whole world it would be this. In fact, I’ve shot four or five weddings with just a couple of Fujifilm X100S ‘s. These cameras are deadly quiet (zero noise on exposure), they use a leaf shutter so you can shoot as fast as you can press the button essentially and they are almost invisible.

I’ve had several guests ask me which side of the family I’m with at weddings. That’s because they didn’t actually see me as the “professional” photographer partly because of the way I operate but partly because of the discrete gear I’m using.

Straps:

My Fujifilm X100S is attached to my belt via a Black Widow Holster. It just hangs there throughout the day and I barely feel it. I unhook it and shoot extremely quickly. 
My Fujifilm X-T1 ‘s are on a pair of UpStrap straps. These are made of Kevlar rubber and are virtually not slip. They simply hang on my shoulder until they are required and I’m 100% confident that the strap will not slip off regardless of what shooting position I find myself in.

Lenses:

For the main lenses and the lenses that are housed on the two Fujifilm X-T1 ‘s, I use the Fujifilm 23mm f/1.4 XF lens and the Fujifilm 56mm 1.2 XF lens. These give a full frame equivalent range of 35mm and 85mm. The lenses are optically spectacular but are light and uncombersome in terms of size.

I attach to my Fujifilm X100S the WCL-X100 which is a wide angler converter. This gives me a 19mm range from the Fujifilm X100S rather than a 23mm. As I have the 23mm on one of my Fujifilm X-T1 ‘s it makes sense to have something a little wider here.

Spare lenses I take with to each wedding are the Fujifilm 27mm f/2.8 pancake lens and the Fujifilm 35mm f/1.4 XF lens. I occasionally pop the 27mm lens on one of the cameras during the evening reception. With the flip screen deployed on the Fujifilm X-T1 and a tiny lens like the 27mm you can wander around looking for fun moments to photograph practically invisibly.

Lighting:


I shoot almost all of my wedding work using available light. I do take with me a little Fujifilm EF-X20 flash which is tiny and can be used as a slave from the Fujifilm X100S or the Fujifilm X-T1 ‘s. You can simply hold it in one hand and direct it whilst shooting with the other hand. The flash itself is around the size of two match boxes.


Backup gear in the car:


What you see in the image is what I will take in a small bag to the wedding. In the car, I also have a Fujifilm X-Pro1, Fujifilm 18mm f/2 and a Fujifilm 10-24mm f/4 Lens. A set of spare cards, batteries etc are also there. Up until the Fujifilm X-T1 ‘s came along, I used to shoot with a Fujifilm X-Pro1 and a Fujifilm X-E2 and they are both very capable cameras.

That’s pretty much it. Size, speed and image quality is all that counts to me.

www.kevinmullinsphotography.co.uk

Inside Kevin’s camera bag:

If you’d like to hear more about Kevin, how he does business, gets bookings, markets his photography… then check out the interview with Andrew Hellmich on Photo Biz Xposed – if you add your details on this page he’ll send you the premium version of the interview.

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8 Comments

  • Hello!

    im shooting also with the Fuji X-T1 , with 23 mm and 56 mm for the same reason!
    buuuut i have a question, how can you shoot on the party with it??? the autofocus system its something i cant solve with it T__T i still use the nikon for that, but i really want to use de fuji on the pary

    i leave you my fb page so you can answer me, or someone else.

    Thank you!
    https://www.facebook.com/GaraFotografias?fref=ts

  • If a photographer showed up at my wedding with some Fujis I would not have confidence in them. The reality is if it isn’t Nikon or Canon it better be Hasselblad or Phase One. I have an X100T and it’s a great walkaround camera but in no way would I use it for commercial clients. It neither has the detail nor features (and battery life) that is required.

    • I guess that discredits Kevin Mullins, James Day and other successful Fujifilm users. It is quite ignorant to discredit a brand or a person because of your experience with the x100T.

      don’t take me the wrong way, but if the decision between a well-seasoned photographer with Fujifilm and an amateur photographer using Nikon/Canon had to be made, I’m sure you would agree with me that you would choose the photographer, not the brand.

      With that being said, I would challenge your thoughts on having confidence with a Fujifilm user. There are many factors i.e. quality of lenses, the settings you use, the flash/lighting you use, the photographer that needs to be considered.

    • I’ve seen so many so-called pro photogs with FF nikons or canons and their shiny oversized white and red or black lenses delivering crappy photos… I’ve seen hired pros with d810 and 18-140/3.5-5.6 lens attached focusing slower than I do on MF with my Fujis.
      The camera is just a tool of trade. Whatever floats one’s boat. You’ll never be stealthy using cameras such as the 1Ds, d5, or other griped beasts with the huge speedlights attached.
      Besides, wedding photography is all about moments and emotions, not pixelpeeping. And if you only choose your photographer based on his gear… my imput is probably worthless.

      My two cents.

      • Your 2c is worth more than the original post..Absolute truth. Remember the days of MF cameras and Film and remarkable images? Giving a man a sniper rile does not make them a marksman..

  • For sure. I would argue that a wedding photographer with a Fuji setup is a person who likes to take risks and be very creative.

    Those photographers aren’t for everyone but I’m sure that type of photographer will produce unique work.

    I still shoot Canon at weddings and a little bit of Fuji. It’s actually my favorite part of the day – when I pull out my XT-10.

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