So, the 24 hour project is over. 24 hours in Busan. I love Busan. It is a port city on the southern coast of Korea. I decided to do the project in Busan after having done three years in a row in Seoul.
For the project, I changed my camera choice literally last minute. The day before the project began I messaged my good friend and Leica Store manager Jay who rush delivered me a Leica T and adapter the day I was leaving. Why the T? Well, first, it charges via USB. Second, it takes my Summilux which I wanted to use. I find the big screen and touch screen interface to be the best digital option for the Summilux.
The second camera I chose was my venerable X100. I’ve used this camera for 7 years and it is still going strong. Whenever someone asks me about the cameras I’ve used the longest I forget this camera. I don’t know why I forget it. It is just always around. I saw it sitting there on the table and just though I wanted to use it for the project.
I did a live on my Instagram around 6:30. I enjoy these a lot. I answered questions about everything from Flickr to Leica to film speeds and developing times. I talked a little about my gear choices.
At 10, I left Iksan for Busan. My fiance and I decided to drive. I knew it would be tough as it is a 3 and a half hour drive to Busan and we’d left at 10. I took the first photo of the project around 12:15 going through a tunnel while driving.
I know I normally shoot in black and white. I kind of felt like for this I’d just post how I felt the photos worked. The Fujifilm is one of the only cameras on the planet that I trust the colours from. Being quite colourblind, I have a hard time with trusting cameras when it comes to this. The colours from the original X100 have never let me down.
After arriving in Busan, we decided to go somewhere to eat. We ended up at a small Japanese place that was open late. I decided I’d take a photo of my fiance here for my third hour photo. She didn’t want me to take a portrait so I settled for this. One thing I love about the X100 is how every setting just seems to be perfectly placed for me. Every time I pick it up it just falls into place. I love it for that.
We left the Japanese restaurant around 4:30 (am) and decided to walk around a little bit and look for a coffee. We found one at a Macdonalds and stayed there where I charged my batteries just to be safe.
After leaving the restaurant we wandered around. I liked this alleyway. The flare from the shitty filter I had on the Summilux was on her eye.
We walked back to our car and the fish market at Jagalchi was starting to open. This guy thought he’d wave at me. I was getting really sleepy at this point. Driving from Iksan to Busan was starting to take its toll. I slept for 30 minutes in the car.
Ironically, I didn’t post this photo even though I quite like it. I think I was in full on zombie mode at this point and was barely checking the photos I was posting. I like the single cloud. The boats were getting ready to go out. The ocean is beautiful in the morning. I love the smell of a port. It brings me back to Newfoundland.
This was the photo I posted from hour 7. I definitely prefer the cloud and boats, haha. Hindsight I guess 😉
We went to a cafe at 8:30 to get something small to eat. I took this in the bathroom. I was so sleepy at this point that I was starting to feel drunk. It was funny though, I remember “drunkenly” thinking how much I love the X100 around this moment. Bent, dented and all.
I decided to go back to the fish market around 9 o’clock. It was starting to get busy and I figured that would wake me up a little. This cigarettes I saw on the way.
It is also funny how the most popular photos on Instagram were those without actual people in them. This is a window of a shop on the way to the fish market.
The market was starting to get busy when we arrived back. I normally would leave this in black and white but I liked the red she was wearing.
I love shooting in the fish market. That said, I am completely sick of photos of old women at stalls. I took the photo above and thought right after I took it how it looks just like every other fish stall woman photo I’d ever seen. So, the next photo I took I made sure didn’t look like that at all. The writing in the photo means “made in Korea” more or less.
This photo garnered a lot of questions on Instagram from people wanting to know how I achieved these tones from the X100. I don’t know what to say, honestly, as to me the tones from the X100 always look great.
A weird thing about doing the 24hourproject this year was that I was completely out of practice in street photography. The Fuji was great in this case though as I just set it to 1/125 and F/11 and never worried about it after. I didn’t even focus. Made my life a lot easier.
I would just change the shutter speed up or down a stop if the light changed slightly. The most popular photo of the day on Instagram (not that this is something that really matters as it wasn’t close to my favourite) was the above. I’ve taken this photo tons of times.
Around 1Pm is when I started to get a second wind. Up until this point I felt cold and tired. I remember taking a photo of this kid and he asked me if I was alright, haha. I figured that couldn’t be a good sign. I think he thought I was losing the plot. I had a coffee shortly after this and the weather started to get warmer.
Starting to feel more chipper, I took another walk around the fish market and then decided I’d had enough of it for the day.
After a quick stop to check into our hotel, we came back outside before falling into the trap of a comfortable bed. Near Jagalchi Market there is another shopping area so we decided to walk around there for the rest of the evening.
A little more on the cameras. Up until this point I had used the Fuji for 90 percent of the photos I’d taken. Being tired as I was I was basically sleepwalking. The Fuji just became easier to use without thinking about. I took some photos of my fiance with the Leica, but I was just too tired to worry about setting it up not to mention adjusting my brain to shoot 75mm.
I have to say though, they make a sexy combination 😉
The Fuji, I just set the camera to F11 / 1/125 / Auto ISO and set the focus distance to 2 meters. I’d adjust the shutter speed up and down a stop or two but otherwise I didn’t have to worry about anything else. It made the situation much easier for me. I’d never really used the Fuji that much for street. I’d always used a Ricoh for street. Weirdly, I think the Fuji is every bit as good or even better. It is somewhere between shooting with a Ricoh and a Leica. I will say, I wish it had a proper shutter sound. I know it is impossible with the leaf shutter, but I really find it feels weird to shoot without the camera making any sound. I find a nice shutter sound satisfying.
It was getting dark around 8 and I had to start using flash. That is one situation in which the X100 isn’t that great. The on-camera flash of the Fuji is pretty weak. I guess it is great for fill flash but not great if you want to use it stylistically.
We made one last stop at a cafe. My fiance didn’t want one, since she knew we were heading back to the hotel where she could sleep. I had to stay up another couple of hours at least. I picked up a couple of cheap beer from the store and we went back to the hotel.
This is the type of situation I like a camera like the T. A little time to think and a situation where the Summilux can shine. I love the T for this type of thing because the big screen and control scheme make it easy to use. It feels like strapping an iPhone onto the back of my Summilux.
I also took this photo with the Leica, but felt it was fitting to finish off with the Fuji. While I feel like I didn’t take many good photos this year (mostly shite) the star of the show was the old X100. It is one of those things where it made me think about all the money I have spent on cameras since buying this X100 and about how it was mostly all wasted. All these years, I doubt I ever needed another digital camera aside from this. I guess that won’t stop me from the next one, sadly.
My apologies for the writing as I am writing this during hour 24. I’ll probably post this in a couple of days but knowing myself I won’t check it first. The 24 Hour Project is an event that always leaves me with good memories. Will I do it next year? I’m not sure.. But, I think I may.
I just hope I take some better photos, ha.
Busan, South Korea.
April 8th, 2018.