In part one of this blog, I told you about my impressions of the first professional digital camera I bought, the Fujifilm FinePix S1 Pro. I looked into my archives and recovered some of the early pictures taken with it.
There are some very early architectural test images, taken around Salford Quays, Manchester, in September 2000. There’s my first commissioned tethered shoot image, taken at the offices of my client in central Manchester of a man on the phone and using a remote control, this was shot in November 2000. I’ve also included a couple of images of my client’s old premises, a listed building in Shudehill Manchester that were shot in March 2001. Finally, I’ve included a studio product shot I did for Virgin Cola in March 2001.
Looking at the files, a few technical aspects stand out for me. Firstly, I can’t remember what lens I was using at the time, but it clearly wasn’t one of the best Nikon lenses ever made. Secondly, the look of the Super CCD sensor, I find it grainy and noisy, probably not helped by the relatively high base iso of 320. I’ve never been a fan of CCD sensors for this very reason, whilst I can understand and accept that some photographers prefer these over CMOS sensors because of the ‘filmic look’ they give, it’s not for me and if I want a filmic look I’d either use an analogue camera with film or add it in post-production. Finally, whilst the camera was unable to shoot RAW format, the colours from the TIFFS and JPEGS were pretty good and better than the other more expensive cameras available at the time.
The S1 Pro was a ground breaking camera both for me and the industry as it was the first affordable DSLR and paved the way for me to move into a digital workflow and opened the market up for all future DSLR’s.