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Fuji X100 – Destination Maui, Hawaii

With wedding season being a little bit slower around here this time of year, we were able to make a trip to Hawaii. We left the snowy cold of Colorado and headed off to our destination of Maui. We met up with some family, living in China, and Hawaii was the perfect midway point to do so. With baby in tow, along with my new Fuji X100 camera, we had such a nice and relaxing time. The weather, water, topography, foliage, wildlife, food, company, and all were just perfect. We saw many amazing whales, snorkeled, boogie boarded, took our daughter for her very first dip in a pool and the ocean, walked, ate, ate some more, explored different towns, including Lahaina and one of my favorites- Paia. And as I sit back in the cold of Colorado, I consider the ways to make it to Hawaii more often and maybe even shoot some wedding photography there from time to time. Regardless, I kept my photographer hat on and thoroughly enjoyed documenting some of our adventures…

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To see more of my work, please visit- Brian Kraft Photography

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76 Responses

  1. wow Brian, these are simply phenomenal! my wife and I honeymooned on Maui and these photos bring back such memories.

    February 8, 2012 at 3:46 pm

  2. Just … wow

    February 9, 2012 at 7:09 am

    • Thanks, Tom! Glad you enjoyed! I want to go back!

      February 9, 2012 at 8:28 am

  3. MPR

    Quite possibly the coolest, most attractive single collection of images I’ve seen. Thank you for sharing, and the inspiration.

    Came here from your link on flickr.

    February 9, 2012 at 2:31 pm

  4. Bart

    Amazing set — now I want to go to Hawaii!

    What presets did you use on those shots? The one of a plane shadow going through the motorway is just amazing!

    February 10, 2012 at 7:03 am

    • Thanks, Bart! I didn’t use any presets– everything left as default.

      February 11, 2012 at 10:14 am

  5. Winson

    Very nice shot and tone.

    February 12, 2012 at 7:37 pm

  6. man, that’s awesome shot! do you use lightroom presets? I love this tone and could you send me one?

    Here is my flickr site: http://www.flickr.com/photos/taotaoswt/

    February 12, 2012 at 8:50 pm

    • Thanks, Richard! Nope- no Lightroom presets. I custom processed each one. Cheers!

      February 13, 2012 at 9:15 pm

  7. Mad skillz yo!

    Love these dude!

    February 13, 2012 at 7:11 pm

    • Thanks, man! You should get one- they’re great little cameras!

      February 13, 2012 at 9:10 pm

  8. These are all just beautiful…makes me want to go back to Maui :) Great job!

    February 13, 2012 at 7:30 pm

    • Thanks! Yeah, the moment I was leaving was the moment I wanted to go back. And I still want to… especially with all the snow around here!

      February 13, 2012 at 9:11 pm

  9. Great photos from what looks like an awesome holiday. and how cute is your baby :)

    February 13, 2012 at 7:38 pm

    • Thanks, it was awesome! And I can’t argue with you about our baby– super cute! :-)

      February 13, 2012 at 9:12 pm

  10. Leo

    Whoa, Brian. That’s quite a story of your Maui stay – amazing work and I love all of your self-shots in various places, especially the reflections/shadows/etc – very nice work. Looks like the X100 is working out quite well :)

    February 13, 2012 at 8:29 pm

    • Thanks, Leo! Yeah, I don’t tend to take that many self shots, but I wanted to document ME on my vacation, since nobody else is going to! Actually, a few of my family had their cameras and they were all like “Why are we even bothering– Brian has a camera.” Haha!

      February 14, 2012 at 9:50 am

  11. WOW these are amazing!! I love film!!

    February 13, 2012 at 10:25 pm

    • Thanks, Heather! However, none of these are film. The Fuji X100 is digital. Cheers!

      February 14, 2012 at 9:44 am

  12. Beautiful processing with that camera! The black and white close-up of the woman in the hat is art. Seriously beautiful. That X100 is in good hands :)

    February 13, 2012 at 10:51 pm

    • Thanks, Derek! I’m glad your X100 has found a happy home. Yeah, that b&w you’re referring to is my wife. She was looking at the photos and just sped right by that one. I was like “Hey, wait a second, don’t you like that one!?” Her response was “Meh,” and just kept going. Haha. I think if she wasn’t the subject, she may have felt differently! Ah well. Take care!

      February 14, 2012 at 9:49 am

  13. Really enjoyed this series! Love the shot of the plane’s shadow over the highway. I felt like I was flying! :)

    February 14, 2012 at 11:24 am

  14. Amazing !! Look like a fun trip !!

    February 14, 2012 at 7:10 pm

  15. I love all the shots on/of the plane. Such cool photos of what can be kind of a mundane thing.

    February 14, 2012 at 10:41 pm

  16. That camera is so beyond impressive. And… I really loved getting to see a vacation from your point of view. :) It looks like you had an absolutely beautiful adventure.

    February 15, 2012 at 11:09 am

  17. Ivan F.

    Now this is a fine example of how to take pictures on your vacation. I felt a sense of relaxation and intimate tenderness in each photo. As a fellow X100 myself, I am so curious to find out how to create such warm effects, although I do understand that a magician never tells his secrets ;)

    February 15, 2012 at 11:27 pm

    • Thanks, Ivan! No, I don’t have secrets, although it is hard to explain what “it” is that’s appealing about someone’s processing. It’s not like I always put this slider to 50 and that one to -35, etc. I just get things set in a way that looks good to me, which tends to be a complex recipe of lots of things! I wish I could easily say what the magic really is! If there’s a particular quality you like and can describe that aspect to me, I may be able to better explain how I got that particular look. Cheers!

      February 17, 2012 at 10:56 am

  18. Kim

    There are times when I think the X100 isn’t for me… And then I see posts like this. Darn you! The shot of the dude floating in the water at sunset is pure gold.

    February 16, 2012 at 4:28 pm

  19. Thanks, Kim! Why do you think the X100 is not for you? You may be right, just curious what your thoughts are on it. I wasn’t sure if it would be right for me either, but I decided to give it a test run and I LOVE it!

    February 17, 2012 at 10:52 am

  20. Phoebe

    Amazing photos. Any tips on keeping the camera dry and sand free when you’re taking beach photos? It looks like you went in quite deep in the water!

    February 28, 2012 at 8:33 pm

    • Thanks, Phoebe! I went far out into the water sometimes, but only in areas when then water was calm and no above my waist. I did bring the camera down toward the water line at times, but I just placed on of my hands under it a bit and anytime I felt water on my hand, I’d raise it up a little. In terms of keeping sand out, if I put it down, I always wrapped it up in a shirt or towel and put it inside a bag. There was never too much wind while photographing, but if there was and sand was being kicked up, I’d definitely put it away since sand can be very bad for a camera. Cheers!

      February 28, 2012 at 11:08 pm

  21. Trevor

    How did you get that dull black, low contrast film look. I know you didn’t use any presets, but there must be a consistent base of settings used. These all look amazing and work so well as a series. Any insight into settings would be appreciated. Really great!!

    February 29, 2012 at 2:15 pm

    • Thanks, Trevor! I think the most important aspect of that low contrast film look is how I’m setting the Tone Curve in Lightroom. I raise the darks up a bit and I bring the lights down a bit. Hopefully that helps clarify it a bit for you!

      February 29, 2012 at 2:43 pm

  22. Amazing shots and trip Brian, feel like I was there!

    March 6, 2012 at 4:55 pm

  23. Akira Yamaguchi

    First of all, I really enjoy your photos. Thanks for the inspiration.

    I bought an X100 last week and thought that the lens was phenomenal and the fuji colors and dynamic range is excellent. It allows me to stretch further when post processing the photos retaining a lot of details. Not all cameras are perfect and I find that the X100 focusing speed is quite slow and it hunts quite badly during low light situation.

    Can you share your thoughts on the X100? How to you achieve good focus in most situations?

    March 7, 2012 at 9:10 pm

    • Thanks, Akira. So glad to be able to offer some inspiration. Congrats on your new X100! Sometimes I do have trouble focusing in low light. All I can say is how I use the camera and hopefully it can be helpful to you. I don’t actually know if this is the most ideal way to focus with camera, but it’s what I’m used to doing with my other cameras, so I stick to it. I just set it to MF and use the back focus button. When upclose, I set it to Macro. That’s it. I wish it did focus a bit better. I think we’ve seen some minor improvements with later firmware updates, so do make sure you have the latest. And let’s just hope they can improve it even more with future firmware updates! Cheers!

      March 8, 2012 at 11:04 am

  24. great shots, they really look like film. lovely family as well, congrats. i will have to check out this camera!

    March 17, 2012 at 3:00 pm

  25. some have a very pleasant grain, did you add that in post or is it from the iso you chose, or just a characteristic of the camera?

    March 17, 2012 at 10:53 pm

    • Thanks, Mike! I didn’t add any grain. I think it’s the ISO. Also, I shot everything as jpeg, so if I did more than a little tweaking, it could have gritted it up a little(??). Not sure if that’s the case, but could be.

      March 17, 2012 at 11:07 pm

  26. these are stunning, it has me wanting to improve what I get out of my X100. love the processing

    March 18, 2012 at 5:56 pm

  27. I lovedbrowsing through those photos. I’ll be in Maui too this summer – with the X100! I’m tempted to bring the 5D as well though… Did you miss having another focal length?

    March 30, 2012 at 8:43 am

    • Oh, I’m jealous! I want to go back ASAP! I did not miss other focal lengths at all. 35mm is certainly my favorite though, so that helps. If you love it too, I wouldn’t worry about not having other options.

      March 30, 2012 at 9:34 am

  28. Harman

    Jumped to this page from flickr and I have to say, the pictures are amazing! I found myself laughing out loud on some of the baby pictures. You have one cute baby there. By the way, how did you capture the shot of the night sky with the stars? Amazing.

    April 5, 2012 at 12:20 am

    • Thanks! For the stars shot, I just put the camera on a shutter speed of something like 13 seconds and set it on a timer to go off a couple seconds after hitting the shutter (to avoid camera shake) and just placed the camera on a stone wall pointing up. I took it in the middle of a parking lot with a bright street light nearby– that helped light up the tree. The moon was 1/2 full and just out of frame… the stars would have been much clearer had the moon not been polluting the sky with all that light. Turned out nicely anyway. Cheers!

      April 5, 2012 at 11:10 am

  29. Branko Marinic

    The place and the camera, meaning nothing when you don’t have vision.

    In your case, you would have blown people away using an iPhone1.. Absolutely breath taking composition. I must pick your mind some time to see how you think/see

    April 26, 2012 at 11:39 am

  30. Thank you, Branko!

    May 9, 2012 at 10:07 am

  31. Steve

    Brian, like so many others I got here from a flickr discussion link. I just received my X100 last Thursday. I love it so far. You are definitely an inspiration as I begin to explore the possibilities. Quick question for you: Any regret not shooting any RAW? I’ve been wrestling with whether to do RAW+JPEG or JPEG only. I like the JPEG renderings, but wonder if having the RAW file would offer post-processing opportunities down the road I may otherwise miss. I know each photographer’s needs are unique, but wonder if you have any insight on whether you wish you had RAW files of a few of these? Thanks!

    July 16, 2012 at 1:58 pm

    • Thanks, Steve– glad you enjoy my work! I don’t have regrets shooting just jpeg with the X100 for my personal work. For my work work (weddings, portraits, etc) I always shoot RAW. I feel you need to cover your ass in those situations and if you are a bit too far off with an exposure, it’s definitely nice to be able to recover a lot more than you could with jpeg. I do like the way the X100 renders jpegs, so yeah- for non-critical shots, I just stick with jpeg and like the look I can get in combo with a little bit of processing in Lightroom. No regrets so far!

      July 18, 2012 at 12:37 pm

  32. Dan

    Wow, great photos, especially the processing! Could you explain your PP on a shot or two? I saw that you mess with curves and just fiddle in general, but do you mess with split toning at all? At times it appears that your shadows have a cooler or almost green tone to them. Saturation or vibrance, perhaps? Do you mess with the HSL a lot?

    August 2, 2012 at 1:25 am

    • Hey, Dan- thanks! I don’t believe I’ve done anything with split toning or HSL on these. I think on these I went into the camera calibration in LR, where you can adjust the tint of the shadows and brought it more towards the green.

      August 3, 2012 at 9:30 am

  33. Really a great job!! :)
    Greetings form Italy.
    Fulvio

    August 13, 2012 at 6:20 am

  34. Philip

    really dreamy photographs… were you using a particular setting to give them that film look, or was that done in post?

    August 13, 2012 at 6:59 pm

  35. You got the eye! Very impressive and an inspiration.

    Joachim

    October 27, 2012 at 5:44 am

  36. You got the eye. Very impressive and a true inspiration.

    Joachim

    October 27, 2012 at 5:45 am

  37. joe valtierra

    Great pics. That camera is something else. Combined with a great eye like yours it’s amazing.

    November 3, 2012 at 6:43 pm

  38. arjuna

    oh Wonderful shot . Can you tell me how these images.

    November 13, 2012 at 7:46 pm

  39. Hi Brian,

    amazing photos! I keep coming back to these, and I would say this set is what showed me what the X100 can do and really pushed me to get it. I’m still getting to grips with it, but if I can create even one shot half as good as any of these it’ll be money well spent!

    December 31, 2012 at 10:57 pm

    • Thanks, Ryan! Glad I could help inspire you to get the X100. It can be a challenge to use, but well worth it once you have a handle on it. Cheers!

      January 3, 2013 at 12:03 pm

  40. Hi Brian, back here again, this time from your link from an X-Togs thread. Looking at these images again and they really remind me of shooting with the Contax T3 and using Fuji Pro400H! That’s a look that I’ve been chasing in digital for years.

    I have to work out how you get this ‘creaminess’ to your colours, without desaturation, as my X100 photos tend to be very vivid and saturated. Your ‘eye’ runs towards a ‘wedding film’ look, and I love it.

    February 8, 2013 at 7:20 pm

  41. regon

    how do you shot those photo? I mean the color, it looks like film but not the digital camera fuji X100.

    February 13, 2013 at 4:10 am

  42. regon

    Okay, now I know you shot those photo in JPG and you do not use any preset,and you adjust a bit in LR, to raise the darks up a bit and bring the lights down a bit. Is that right? anything else you did with you photo?

    February 13, 2013 at 8:05 am

    • That’s right. Aside from that– nothing in particular. Just whatever looks nice. I have no idea of any specifics. If I had done it a week ago, I wouldn’t be able to really remember, let alone a year ago. And it’s different for every photo. Sorry I can’t be more helpful.

      February 14, 2013 at 1:05 pm

  43. What a wonderful set of pictures and I love the mood you’ve conveyed in these. The composition is wonderful as well as the warmth. I feel like I’ve just look through an entire art book shot in the 70′s because all the pictures look like they were shot with film and aged. I thought you were using a LR preset as a starter but from the comments above it seems you do your own thing. I quite like it. Thank you for sharing. I look forward to checking out the wedding with your new X100s and I can’t wait to get mine when it comes it. I sold my X100 as soon as the X100s was announced but still shoot with my XPro1.

    March 4, 2013 at 10:30 am

  44. kay

    thank you for sharing! It felt like watching the Marnum PI TV series in pictures.
    I would be also interested about your post processing workflow. IF you are willing to share. It looks like VSCO film presets.
    I would be interested in your JPEG setting for the nex X100s. Thank you and keep up the good work!

    March 5, 2013 at 7:38 am

  45. Pretty great post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wanted to mention that I have truly loved surfing around your weblog posts. In any case I’ll be subscribing in your rss feed and I hope you write once more very soon!

    March 8, 2013 at 1:42 am

  46. I keep coming back to this set, I know that now its all about the X100s but I still love these images as much as anything you have posted with the new camera. I really cant justify an upgrade at the moment and my style of shooting the X100 means that fast start up and faster auto focus are not that important to me as they are to some other people such as street photographers…I’m sure that the newer model is in my future though…both cameras are superb to me and your images certainly are a great advertisement for the fuji X series

    March 17, 2013 at 3:50 am

    • Thanks again, Julie. Yes, there is little wrong with the X100. Like you say– for some styles of shooting– nothing wrong at all!

      March 17, 2013 at 7:25 am

  47. Totally awesome! I feel the happiness floating around my room now.

    December 4, 2013 at 6:42 pm

  48. Helpful information. Lucky me I discovered your web site by accident, and I’m stunned why this coincidence didn’t came about in advance! I bookmarked it.

    January 21, 2014 at 8:25 am

  49. Lovely, lovely beach! Not too crowded ever, in the many times we have been there. Decent and well behaved visitors. Close to restaurants. Easy to walk in and enjoy the gentle waves
    http://www.globogirls.com/place/252-Maui

    February 2, 2014 at 8:34 pm

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