Frederic Frognier

When I was 10 years old I went to a Ferrari meeting in Spa-Francorchamps (Belgium). My father gave me his Canon AE-1 dSLR with two lenses (a Canon 50mm f/1.8 and Canon 70-300mm f/4-5.6) and 4 films to shoot the cars (I was a Ferrari fan and still am now). I shot the 4 films and then went to a photography shop in my home town to develop them. One week later, the guy asked me who took the pictures. I said it was me and he told me the pictures were great. The pics were nice for a 10 year old boy but more importantly, I had caught the photography bug!

Seven years ago, I started to take some pictures of my wife with a Nikon D70s and Nikon D80. First, for fun and then more seriously (at that time, I created my first Flickr account to show the best of my work). She was my first real model. Then I met a model named Jessie H. and six years later, I am still working with her.

Today, I’m working as a full-time photographer (it’s been 3 years) and I’m the co-founder of K-pture with my photographer-friend Dorian. I mainly photograph people – portraits, wedding and corporate events.

For 6 years, I’ve been using Nikon gear. First, a Nikon D70s, then a Nikon D80, Nikon D200, Nikon D3 and most recently a Nikon D4 with prime lenses such as the Nikon 35mm f/1.4G and Nikon 85mm f/1.4G. I loved the Nikon D4 and those two lenses but damn it’s a heavy set up. I also sometimes add a Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8G and a Nikon 105mm f/2.8G in the bag.

A few months ago, I bought a Fujifilm X-E2 to try to lighten my camera bag. More than that, I’ve discovered a great little camera with awesome image quality. At that time, I had only one lens, the Fujifilm 35mm f/1.4/R. In most peoples’ heads, a pro photographer has to carry a ton of gear and has to have big cameras to look real.

To prove to myself I could do great work with a smaller camera, I’ve decided to shoot an entire series called “Lazy afternoon” with the Fujifilm X-E2 and the Fujifilm 35mm f/1.4. Nothing else. I wanted to keep it simple and intimate. The Nikon D4 wouldn’t have been a good fit for the series. Too big, too noisy, too loud.

After seeing the results and the great feedback from everyone, I told myself I was going to use the Fuji X-E2 for a paid job, but I took the Nikon D4 along with me too, just to reassure myself. It worked great and more than that, nobody noticed I was the “official photographer”. That was it. I’ve used the Fuji for 90% of my pictures since then. Most of the time, the Nikon D4 slept in my bag. Then I bought a second lens, the Fujifilm 23mm f/1.4R. I needed a wide angle lens, and this one is just awesome. Sharp and fast.

Today, I’m using two Fujifilm X-T1 with 4 prime lenses. I’ve sold the Fujifilm X-E2 and all the Nikon gear. It was a big decision to make but I did it and I don’t regret it for one second. Some people told me I was nuts but I don’t care. I knew I was right. That was my choice. The Fujifilm X-T1 works great. I’ve shot 12 corporate jobs and 10 weddings with it in the last 4 months. It’s fast, accurate and light. My camera bag now weighs a quarter of what it did before. I’ll post a review of the X-T1 here soon.

I use two Fujifilm X-T1 camera with the following:

– Fujifilm 14mm f/2.8 to catch the atmosphere and funny faces. Awesome lens.
– Fujifilm 23mm f/1.4 when the light is off. Sharp and fast.
– Fujifilm 35mm f/1.4 to take portraits with a background. Tiny and great quality lens.
– Fujifilm 56mm f/1.2 for the portraits. This one is a killer lens. So sharp and f/1.2 is a dream.
– Fujifilm EF-X20 flash just in case.
– Samyang 8mm f/2.8 Fisheye Fuji-X mount. Don’t use it that much but fun lens to use.
– 3 batteries for each camera
– SD cards (Sandisk 280mo/s)
– Holdfast Money Maker
– ONA Brixton (dark truffle) bag

As for other gear, I use an Apple 13” MacBook Air (i7, 8Gb RAM, 256 SSD), LaCie HDD, Adobe Lightroom and VSCO film presets. I’ve also been testing an Olympus OM-D E-M1 + Olympus 25mm f/1.8 + Olympus 45mm f/1.8 + Olympus 75mm f/1.8 M. Zuiko lenses. It’s a great little camera but it’s too soon for me to say anything sure about it :-)

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