V Opoku

My name is V. Opoku, but usually just V does the trick and I am documentary wedding photographer based in London, UK (for now). I am also a bit of a traveller, you know the type of guy to book a one way ticket somewhere and then figure things out from there – yep, one of those guys.

About 20 months ago, I started to use the Fujifilm X-Series for Wedding Photography. It was not an intentional switch from DSLR to Mirrorless because at the time I did not have any gear (my Nikon D700 kit got stolen).

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Shooting exclusively with the Fujifilm X-Series was just a discovery that worked out well for me.
My vision is to build human connections whilst creating a body of work that clients will cherish for years to come. And I feel that my current kit has really helped me bring that vision to life ; In the sense that the smaller and more discreet cameras and lenses helps me to blend in much easier on wedding days.

Cameras:

My kitbag on a typical wedding day consists of two Fujifilm X-Pro 1 bodies and a Fujifilm X1ooS.
I usually have the Fujifilm X-1ooS around my neck and one of the Fujifilm X-Pro 1 mounted with the Fujifilm 35mm f/1.4 XF lens on my shoulder. It is a 50/50 usage between the two bodies. The second Fujifilm X-Pro 1 is mounted with the Fujifilm 18mm f2.0 XF but that stays in my bag and most of the time I don’t even use it.
My iphone 5S + VSCOcam app also comes in handy for some insta-fun moments.

Lenses:

I am a prime shooter and have been since early 2010. I own the Fujifilm 35mm f/1.4 XF along with the Fujifilm 18mm f2.0 XF lens. The Fujifilm X100S doubles up as my 23mm f/2.0 lens. (Ed – this is equivalent to a 35mm)

99% of my work is created with either a Fujifilm X-Pro 1 + the Fujifilm 35mm f/1.4 XF or with the Fujifilm X100S. They give me the field of view of 50mm and 35mm respectively. I deliberately shoot at these field of view because I want to master seeing the world that way and the it also enables me to achieve some sort of consistency within my body of work. They also allow me to get in closer to what I am documenting. However, I recently played about with the Fujifilm 56mm f/1.2 XF lens during a wedding and I will be getting my own copy soon.

Lighting:

I try to shoot with available light as much as possible but when I must, I use the Canon 430 EX II.

Bag & Straps:

My bag is a normal messenger bag from Zara and I got my straps made when my travels this summer took me to Northern Morocco.

What I love about the Fujifilm X-Series system as a whole:

1. The Image quality that the sensor and lenses are capable is pretty amazing.

2. The traditional shutter speed dials & the aperture value on the lenses makes things faster to use once you get use to it.

3. The rangefinder styled design and having to compensate for parallax offers an interesting shooting experience.

4. Size & Weight, for those long hours on a wedding day or for travelling, trust me.

In a nutshell, the Fujifilm X-Series for wedding photography is a breath of fresh air, it offers a new way of doing things.

www.vopoku.com

 

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14 Comments

  • Thanks for having me along Mark, love the site and honoured to be part of it.

    p.s I am free to discuss mirrorless / Fujifilm gear for weddings so if any ready have any questions don’t hesitate to leave a comment and I will be sure to reply.

    V.

  • Hey V,

    I have a fuji XE-1 and the autofocus is pretty much garbage. I thought that the X-Pro1 had basically the same autofocus system. How do you deal with the crummy autofocus system?

    • Hey Chris, the X-Pro 1 & the X-E1 do share the same autofocus I believe. In terms of the “crummy autofocus system” are you referring to focus speed or focus accuracy? There is no denying that D-SLR’s focuses much quicker than these Fuji’s but once I got to the system it hasn’t been an issue, also I am more laid back in my approach but there are situations where they can be found wanting.

      The early X-Series bodies used Contrast Detect as to Phase Detect found in most D-SLR so naturally focusing was slower, the newer bodies however incoporates a combination of both Phase & Contrast Detect leading to quicker focus acquisition – my X100S focus faster than my X-Pro 1 bodies and the X-T1 focus faster than them both, so there is the trend than focusing gets quicker with each new body that Fujifilm releases.

      V.

  • Great read V! I’m getting more and more convinced about these mirrorless cameras, but I’m still latching onto my canons. With the release of Sony’s A7s would you see this as fujifilms latest rival?

    • Kings! Glad you enjoyed it. The Mirrorless world is definitely a fascinating place at the moment and I predict it’s only going to get better.

      The Sony A7 series is very interesting and it’s a rival not just to the Fujifilm’s but also to the D-SLR world since it has a Full Frame sensor! They only problem is that bigger lenses are needed to make use of the full frame sensor, thus diminishing the size / weight advantage that these smaller cameras have. The Olympus OM-D series is also another one making a home in the Mirrorless world. However I think the Fujifilm X-Series offers the perfect balance of Size & Image Quality and an awesome shooting experience hence why it is my tool of choice.

      V.

  • Really enjoyed this V.

    As a full time Fuji shooter too, I really respect the limitation of only getting two or three focal lengths during a wedding. I absolutely love the 56mm. It’s an amazing investment for portraits. I fell in love with my Nikon 85mm 1.8 and was glad to sell it off when I picked up the 56mm 1.2

    • Thanks for checking in Jarrett.

      Limitations in a world where there is none can be liberating. Deciding to shoot just primes was one of the best decisions I have made in regards to developing as a photographer and restricting myself to just a 2 main lenses (18mm is really just a back up) has help me even further. About 95% of my travels are shot with just the x100s!

      I have played about with the 56mm, it’s an amazing lens but I am struggling to see how it will fit into my bag. The 35mm is a brilliant portrait lens and at the moment I like to get in a abit close and personal. I was playing with the idea of going back to shoot weddings at 35mm + 85mm FOV but I have decided to stick to the 35mm + 50mm FOV for another year.

      V.

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