TAP & DYE Camera Strap

My girlfriend, Emily, and I received our camera strap from TAP & DYE that we ordered last week. This camera strap is their L E G A C Y fixed neck strap, which comes in either Black & Natural, Antique Tan, or Dark Amber color. Also, this strap comes in different lengths– mine is Black & Natural in 44″, while Emily got Dark Amber in 38″ for her new X100. See hers!


It came along with a custom pouch. Very nice presentation in my opinion. My first impression as I took the camera strap out was how nice the leather felt. Considering it was still brand new, it was rather stiff, which also made it nearly impossible to get on the camera! Emily and I probably spent 40 minutes trying to get it on…But once I got mine on, I couldn’t help but admire the vintage feel and look of the strap on the X-Pro 1, and it was the same with the the X100 I gave to Emily.


In terms of accessories, I’ve pretty much completed my X-Pro 1 with this strap. Considering the quality of this strap, it runs “cheap” at under $100 shipped compared to other high quality leather straps (e.g. luigi, artisan & artist, etc.). I’m happy with this purchase and I couldn’t have made a more successful purchase if it wasn’t for the help of Justin over at TAP & DYE.


Fujifilm X-Pro 1 + XF 35mm f/1.4

Canon 5D Mark III + 85mm f/1.8

Up and Into Spaces

_DSF0092Today, I decided to go shoot around the city after my afternoon classes. I waited a bit in the library until the sun went down, which was around 4p.m. I brought my Fujifilm X-Pro 1 and my Olympus OM 50mm f/1.8. I’ve actually been waiting for the chance to test this lens combo in the real world. I’ve actually had the lens for a while now, but after picking up the X-Pro 1, I also picked up a cheap adapter that works with OM lenses. The lens, in 35mm format, has an equivalent of about 75mm on the X-Pro 1. So it’s a pretty decent medium telephoto lens. Also, this lens is all manual (focusing and aperture) though the body is electronic.

tich 3 tich 4 tich1 tich2 tich5 tich6 tich7 tich8Doing street work with this lens can be really tough. First, it’s an all manual lens with no real indicator of a focused image on the camera body. Second, because it’s all manual, the best method for focusing is either taking the time to focus (still objects) or zone focusing (moving subjects). Third, it’s not wide enough for people on the streets that are constantly moving closer or further away from you. Despite all of that, this lens is SHARP! The colors and contrast come out very nice too, though some images did lack a bit of contrast (due to lighting), but it’s nothing a simple post processing can’t solve. I’ll have to admit, shooting at this focal range is challenging.

San Jose is an interesting place, really. Sometimes it just feels so deserted and quiet. Other times, it’s loud and busy. Most of the time I shoot, it usually deserted and quiet while the shadows from the tall buildings creep up on the rest of the city. It’s a fascinating sight, and there’s a stillness to it that makes one wonder at times. Unfortunately, looking up at bright buildings and then back down into darkened spaces really started to hurt and tire my neck and my eyes.

One thing is for sure: I don’t regret taking only this lens to shoot!


Fujifilm X-Pro 1 + Olympus OM 50mm f/1.8 Zuiko (OM-XF converter)

Morning at Coyote Hills

All I could remember this morning was shooting straight up out of bed at 8:40. I was to meet someone at 9 a.m., but for some reason, my alarm clock failed me. Upon getting up, I put on some jeans and grabbed my sweater and my camera bag.

I ended up here after my meeting, along with my new 50mm f/1.4 and my Canon 5D Mark III. I’ve lived around this area practically all my life.

On my walk, I found this little guy on the side. I wonder how many took notice and stopped by.

Realizing what time it was, I knew what I was in store for. I was so excited.

I pass by this area very often on my way to work. After seeing it so many times, I somewhat figured out what time winds come along and what time there are no winds. And with no winds like this, reflections are everywhere! I love reflections.



I made my way back after the winds started to come in. The water became infested with ripples and small waves in a matter of minutes. The reflections were gone.

Strange enough, on my way back, I ran into the same little cat. The cat was located in a different spot this time, and this time it was awake. 😀

Ever since I can remember, I’ve always come here to this park. It’s one of the places I’ve come to appreciate in this small town. Each and every visit, it never ceases to surprise me with life and beauty of nature. I can photograph this place over and over again, and each one will be different.

Going Back in Time

This is my Uncle’s Olympus OM-2n film camera. For a while now, he’s known that I’ve been into photography. Over the course of the year, I’ve always asked him about his old film camera, since he used to be interested in it as well, while expressing his curiosity in my own interest in the art. I finally took the initiative to ask him if I could borrow it and experiment with it since I’ve never really used an old film camera such as this. I came over to his house to pick it up and was really excited. My first impression of the camera was that it was very heavy for its size and dirty with dust and corrosion infesting the old magnesium alloy camera body, which dated back to 1975. My Uncle handed me the bag with accessories, a flash unit, giant macro lens, some expired batteries and film, and the original manuals and warranty card. The pages of the manual were stuck together and felt crispy in my hands. At first, I thought the camera was broken since the lever to advance the film was jammed, but all it needed was a fresh set of batteries. I couldn’t help but stare at it.

It almost felt as if I was thrown back in time. Out of curiosity, I asked my Aunt if she had any pictures taken with this camera to see the kinds of images this camera could produce. She went to go find some and later came back with one photo. The photo was a close up of her wearing sun glasses behind a giant rock wall, with a wonderful youthful smile. Curiously, I turned the photo over to the back to see if it was dated. For a split second, I saw note and the word “Love” and my aunt suddenly snatched it from my hands. I smiled and looked up at her suspiciously. I wonder what was written on there. She replied to me, “This is my love note to your Uncle, you can’t read it”.

I laughed.

I took the camera home along with all the accessories and the old vintage looking bag. Sitting in my car with the bag on my lap, I opened it to take the camera out once again. As I hold the heavy, cold, dirty camera, I feel as if my Uncle and Aunt’s memories and feelings begin to flow into me. It’s strange…Their memories, their time spent together for all those years, those captures moments in time, all the abundant smiles and frowns that were captured and shared— I’m holding the tool that once was apart of their lives. I am immediately connected, attached, and what was most likely their dream or their vision is now apart of mine.

After inspecting the camera at home, I decided to give it a thorough cleaning. I also noticed the camera began to oxidize/rust.

After a few weeks, I decided to look into what kinds of lenses I could get. My first lens that I decided on was the nifty-fifty (f/1.8). However, looking them up, I found that there were many different versions and I didn’t know which one to get! So I did my research and in the end, I made my purchase.