Beautiful Things Don’t Ask For Attention
Hello everyone, my name is Adrian Schiefele, I am 28 years old (soon 29!) and I am from Eichstätt, Germany. Besides making music, my biggest passion is doing photography and I would love to talk about this a little bit today!
For a living I work as a graphic/web designer in a big IT company, so the creative side of things is everywhere in my daily life. I started photographing nearly everything I could think of but over the years I specialized myself in landscape, travel and documentary photography since these are the things I enjoy the most doing.
This started a long time ago. My father was always into photography so it was pretty clear I ended up being here too. I remember, as a kid, there was always some sort of camera around and when I hit the age of 6 I got my first film camera and I pretty much annoyed everyone with it.
Parents, Siblings, our cats – nothing and nobody was safe. So I always enjoyed the process of capturing a moment and make it a photograph. Then, in my teens I got my first DLSR which changed everything. Now I was able to have way more control about my images. I was able to set the aperture, switch lenses, do long exposures and all that weird stuff – it was a whole new world to me.
I was overwhelmed by the possibilities and tried everything out – most of the time I didn’t know what I was doing though. I grew older and smartphones became a thing and for the first time you had the possibility to have a camera with you wherever you are.
Time went by and I moved into my first flat in the city (landscape photography was done now), was busy starting my career and spent my free time doing sports and music primarily. But in my head photography always had a special place and I knew, one day I would come back. More time went by and one day me and my friends decided to go on a vacation. I grabbed my old camera and took it with me. I had so much joy just doing photography again but realized this camera has seen time and maybe is a little bit outdated.
I wasn’t quite happy with the whole body shape either, so I wondered if there is something new on the market I haven’t looked on for nearly 8 years, which was more of understatement and classy looking. And then I discovered Fujifilm. For the first time I had the possibility to bring my camera wherever I want due the small size of it and have astonishing image quality all time with me. All this combined with classy design. I was sold!
First, like I teased above already: I liked the design. Thanks to my job I have to think about all the details and how they visually compliment each other, so I really was into Fujifilm within the first second. I came from Canon so every camera looked “bulky”. That’s all I knew back then. At the age of 16 you love it because you look like a professional but when you get older you like the thought of understatement and Fujifilm was exactly what I was looking for.
So, when I was in the market for a new camera I had a few things that were important and I wanted. I wanted to be able to travel light (because like I said I wanted a camera that I could bring with me everywhere) and I really liked the „retro/old“ train everybody tried to hop on.
Specwise everything blew my ten year old camera apart, so there was not really a point. I wasn’t really into video but 4K came along and I thought „hey if I ever need it – that would be cool!“ Also I was filming a little bit for my music project, so why not. With these specs at that time, the market was still endless.
I did a little bit of research to see what’s around and one day I saw a Fujifilm X-T1. I did not know much about Fujifilm in general and their cameras but I really liked their timeless design and aesthetics. So I began to inform myself.
I really quick began to understand their philosophy and I loved it. I read more and I fell in love with their customer friendly way of providing updates for old cameras and listening to their customers, giving them exactly what they want. „Brilliant”, I thought. “That’s the one I want!”
That time in Summer 2016 there were already rumors about a new camera, the successor of the X-T1. So I was in trouble. Get the X-T1 or wait for the X-T2? As a impatient person these 3 months until the X-T2 was released were like hell for me. I wanted it now and didn’t want to wait any longer.
But I did! I remember ordering a used lens (23mm F1.4) first before I got the camera. I had no possibility of trying it and I hoped everything would be working. It was quite a wild ride but I am glad how it all came together!
I think we live in busy times and for me the best way of compression is to go where nobody is and have a quiet moment with nature. I also like the fact that it combines going out and being creative at the same time. Nietzsche once said “We like to be out in nature so much because it has no opinion on us.” and every time I am lost in the woods, lying in the pouring rain, covered in dirt surrounded by the freezing cold: „You are goddamn right my friend.”
Current cameras and lenses setup
- Fujifilm X-T2
- 16mm F1.4
- 27mm F2.8
- 50-140mm F2.8
And of course a lot of accessories! But like everyone else, I still have more lenses on my wishlist! I would love to try out the new 8-16mm – seems my kind of jam!
My favorite lens would probably be the 16mm F1.4. I love the focal length and the view it provides. It’s wide but not too wide – you still can use it for nearly everything. Its greatest strength is by far its sharpness! You can use it as a macro too, which is pretty handy! Overall a brilliant lens and I can’t recommend it highly enough! Try one!
I think a telezoom lens, like the XF 50-140mm f/2.8 R, is one of the most underrated and often forgotten tools in landscape photography. It not only allows you to achieve a closer look, it also allows you to separate your subject from the background. This could be the top of a mountain or a lonely tree in the wild.
A nice side note is that you are nearly forced to use a tripod which leads you to relax more and find your time composing a good image instead of shooting endless amounts of pictures because you were in a hurry. The 50-140mm in particular is an amazing lens. I wanted it for so long but the price always killed the thought of having it. One day I finally pulled the trigger and bought a used one for a pretty good price and I’m glad I did it.
I guess sometimes things have to hurt once. ? It’s a pretty big piece of glass and everyone is always amazed I take it with me when I am doing hikes but the quality that comes out of it justifies everytime.
I use several backpacks. I choose them for different scenarios:
1 day trips:
Peak Design 20L
This is my daily backpack I use 90% of the time. You can take it wherever you want without drawing any attention. Don’t let the size fool you: you can fit a lot of stuff in here.
It is such a brilliant thought out product with so much love to detail.
2 days + / hiking:
Mindshift rotation180° 22L
My father gave me this as a gift for our hiking tours. Besides from the camera equipment it still has plenty of space for clothings for the night and the next day. It’s unique rotation design allows you to get your camera out of the backpack without taking it down. So it is a real timesaver and super nice for hiking!
Outdoor or commercial shootings:
XROC Case by Auer
This thing can take a beating, is waterproof and everything inside is safe. It sits in the back of my car and makes sure everything is well protected. Perfect for a well planned shootings (where the car is near me, so I won’t have to walk around with it the whole day and simply park the car, and drag the case to the location within a few metres) with bad weather conditions. There is so much space in this thing, I have to buy more stuff to get it to its limits!
When I am doing photographs I don’t have a certain workflow. I pack my stuff the night before shooting, look for local spots on Google Maps, Instagram or websites like 500px, 1x, Flickr and start early in the morning. This is by the way a very good way to find spots. Look what others have done, talk to them about their shots and most of them are willing to help you and give you tips.
Back to my routine: I get up pretty early in the morning before sunrise kicks in and drive to said spot and just wander around and see what works. Most of the time I have no clue what to expect until I arrive and sometimes I have no certain shot in mind but this way it’s the most exciting and challenging for me. Having no plans makes things stay interesting.
At the moment I am using Adobe Lightroom for all my editing but I’ll try to make the switch to Capture One soon. I already did a little testing and at first I wasn’t really into it but after some time I realized it’s what I need for my purposes, especially for working with Fuji RAW-Files. I do backups regular on a separate Hard Drive but would love to have a system which will do it automatically so I don’t have to think about anything, so that’s on my list!
“Hello everyone, my name is Adrian Schiefele, I am 28 years old and I am from Eichstätt, Germany. Besides making music, my biggest passion is photography. For a living I work as a graphic/web designer in a big IT company, so the creative side of things is everywhere in my daily life. I started photographing nearly everything I could think of but over the years I specialized myself in landscape, travel and documentary photography.”