Through a Photographer’s Eye: 9 Photographers Share Their Advice

Over the last two and a half months, you would have seen a series of interviews which formed Series One of Through a Photographer’s Eye. In each interview, we heard from a handful of Australian photographers and how they use Fujifilm X Series cameras to photograph the world around them.

Before Series Two of Through a Photographer’s Eye begins next week, let us take a look back at what advice was shared when each photographer was asked the question:

If you have some advice for someone starting out in photography what would it be?


Drew Hopper

Just get out there and shoot! It is not about becoming famous or having all the gear available on the market. It is about enjoying yourself and finding your own style. Shoot what you like shooting, and avoid copying the work of others with the belief that it will make you a ‘better’ photographer. It’s totally fine to follow other photographer’s work, that’s how you find inspiration, but don’t compare yourself to other people’s success. Make your own success. Most importantly, save your money for a flight somewhere, not camera gear. Memories are worth more, and great photos wait for no one.

Fujifilm X100S – 23mm – F4 – 1/100 second – ISO 200


Alamby Leung

Social media is a great place for inspiration and to receive feedback, but developing your personal style and be creative with your ideas are important too.

Fujifilm X-Pro2 with XF18mmF2 R – 18mm – ISO 400 – F2.8 – 1/6000 second


Ian Tan

Advice for new photographers? Don’t get hung up on the gear. I go a bit nuts about gear myself but at the end of the day, they are just tools. You use the right one for the job, and everyone has their preference for which tools they like to use. Cameras and lenses from any major brand these days are all very capable – heck, even the iPhone takes awesome images – provided you use them properly. So learning how to use your chosen camera (and editing software) well to translate the creative vision that you see in your mind into beautiful images is more important than staying up to date with the latest and greatest gear.

Get out and shoot more. Learn to connect with others and draw inspiration from them, not intimidation. Having said that, I love Fujifilm, the way the cameras handle, the image quality, and the company’s philosophy in how they make cameras and support them through continuous firmware improvements (gotta love kaizen!).

Ice Patterns: X-T2, XF14mmF2.8 – ISO 500 – F4 – 1/125 second


Dale Rogers

If you are just starting out in photography, I recommend you follow and watch other photographers on social media especially those who are shooting similar things to yourself. By watching others, you see perspectives or ideas for shooting that you would not have thought of or you start analysing the images trying to determine how the shot was achieved.

Have a look at some of the old masters (or current masters) of photography and see their images. My inspiration for intimate landscapes came from Eliot Porter, one of the first professionals to use colour film, and Jai Maisel who currently shoots street photography in New York City. Have a look at their work and see if you can see the connection I made between them.

I also encourage photographers to try one of the 52-week challenges that exist. On our Photo Rangers Community Facebook page, we host a 52-week challenge. This is a personal challenge and not a contest or competitive event. The purpose is to get photographers creating photos and shooting subjects they would not have done otherwise. If you want to join along in this supportive community, come on over to

Fujifilm X-T10 – XF18mmF2 R – ISO 200 – F9 – 1/30 second

Josselin Cornou

Buy a camera with a fixed manual lens. In a day of automation, it is easy to go into the classic auto mode. It works really well in most cases, but this also means that the user will hardly learn any photographic concept. Having a limited focal length will help the user reframe the shot, avoiding any bad practices like constantly zooming. My first camera was a Panasonic GH2 + Voigtlander 25mmF0.95. That setup really helped me step up my game.

If you want to do landscape, then get an ultra wide angled lens. These lenses are expensive, but they will help you frame those ultra wide shots – making it totally worth it.

Fujifilm X100F – ISO 200 – F7.1 – 4.3 seconds

Anirban Chatterjee

Have fun and enjoy. You can be the most technically gifted photographer, but if you are not having fun or enjoying the process, your images will be boring.

And if you are starting to do photography on the street, please be respectful to others. In Australia, it is perfectly legal to do photography in public places, but that doesn’t give you a licence to be a nuisance. As much as we have the right to take photographs in public places, the other person also has a right to walk on the street minding their own business. We live in a community, and respect must be mutual. An image is not worth it if it ruins someone’s day. So please be respectful.

Fujifilm X-T1 – XF18-135mmF3.5-4.8 – ISO 6400 – F16 – 1/210 second


Harmeet Gabha

Don’t be scared, just do it (as the Nike ad says). There are so many free resources available online that you will be able to learn and pick up any area of photography very quickly and easily. Google is your best friend; just type in what you are looking for and you’ll find the answer within minutes.

I’m also focusing more on my blog (, by creating content for people just starting out in photography. It’s a resource where they can learn some techniques quickly that will make them more confident and inspired.

“Casa Balto, Barcelona” – Fujifilm X-T1 – XF18-135mmF3.5-4.8 – ISO 400 – F3.5 – 1/180 second

Benjamin Lee

⁃ Shoot everything and as often as possible

⁃ Explore all types of photography, take note of the genre’s aesthetic of photography that really motivates you and hones in on it.

⁃ Consume and view as much photography and art as you are producing (if not more). This will really help you refine your taste and personal aesthetic.

Fujifilm X-Pro2 with XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR – 1/100 – F2.8 – ISO2500

Joe Jongue

Don’t be caught up in the gear, just go out and shoot. Don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone; chances are, you may be good in a particular genre than you may think. Join a local photography community, be open to advice and more importantly, interact with other photographers.

Fujifilm X-T1 with XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR – 1/180 – F4 – ISO200

Through a Photographer’s Eye: Benjamin Lee

Through a photographer’s eye is the first in a series of interviews featuring Australian photographers. In each interview, we learn about the person behind the camera and how they use Fujifilm X Series cameras to photograph the world around them. Our ninth interview is with Sydney based photographer, Benjamin Lee.

Benjamin, tell us about yourself and how photography has impacted your life.

Photography has played a huge role in my life, shifting the direction of my career and lifestyle. Just over two years ago, I was working a regular, boring office job straight out of university. I wasn’t even working in a role I went to university for. The pay was great and steady, which made it hard to break out of that comfort zone. I finally built up the courage, and just quit on a whim. I knew I had enough savings to not worry too much.

I knew I wanted to spend a good six months being willfully unemployed and so I did. I spent my mornings at cafes, days visiting galleries and hiking national parks. With all my free time spent doing fun things and going to interesting places, I wanted to learn how to take photos and document it all.

That was when I bought my first camera – the Fujifilm X-Pro1 (w/ XF35mmF1.4 & XF18mmF2). I started sharing my photos to this brand new app called Instagram, and not long after that, Instagram put me on their suggested user list. My following grew quite significantly because of that and it set me on this path to where I am today.

Fujifilm X-Pro2 with XF35mmF2 R WR – 1/550 – F2 – ISO400

You started with a Fujifilm X-Pro1 and had recently used the X-Pro2. For those not familiar with Fujifilm products, what did you find to be the biggest change between these models and do you think Fujifilm X Series cameras are heading in the right direction?

The first thing I immediately noticed was how quick the autofocus was. Paired with the XF35mmF2 and the XF16-55mmF2.8, the X-Pro2 never missed a beat for the two weeks I was testing it.

Some other differences I liked were:

⁃ Dual SD card slots: This feature really brings the camera into the modern professional standard.

⁃ ISO performance was surpassingly good. It was comparable to some of the full frame cameras I’ve used before.

⁃ Megapixels: the extra megapixels (from 16MP to 24MP) meant I could crop heavily in post processing.

⁃ The added weather sealing is a must for me, as I shoot a lot outdoors.

⁃ The subtle button redesign on the back of the camera is great. I can mostly operate the XPro2 with one hand now that the buttons have been moved to the right side of the camera. I think it’s amazing and commendable that Fujifilm has listened to the needs and wants of its customers and made small changes to perfect an already great camera.

Fujifilm X-Pro2 with XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR – 1/4700 – F2.8 – ISO200

How do you find social media helps your photography career? Did you find using the Fujifilm Camera Remote App helpful when paired with the X-Pro2?

I started photography around the same time social media really started to pick up. It really played an integral role in growing my career to the point it’s at today. Instagram spurred my interest in photography. It has helped in enhancing my visibility as a photographer. From that visibility, I have met and worked with a lot of amazing people and brands.

Fujifilm X-Pro2 with XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR – 1/100 – F2.8 – ISO2500

Best of all, I fully control the distribution of my work and have a direct line to communicate with my audience. I didn’t really get a chance to play around with the Camera Remote App. My workflow is with RAWs, so I prefer the traditional method of editing via computer and transferring to my phone that way.

If you have some advice for someone starting out in photography what would it be?

⁃ Shoot everything and as often as possible

⁃ Explore all types of photography, take note of the genre’s aesthetic of photography that really motivates you and hones in on it.

⁃ Consume and view as much photography and art as you are producing (if not more). This will really help you refine your taste and personal aesthetic.

Fujifilm X-Pro2 with XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR – 1/5400 – F2.8 – ISO400

Can you tell us the story behind your favourite image captured using the Fujifilm XF16-55mmF2.8?

This is my favourite photo that I took over the two weeks I had the X-PRO2. It was shot with the XF16-55mmF2.8 on the longer range of the lens. A few friends and I went to the city to shoot some street photography.

Fujifilm X-Pro2 with XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR – 1/500 – F2.8 – ISO400

We found this intersection where the sunset light was hitting just right, the buildings had strong character and the rush hour office folks were busily crossing the street trying to get home.

I’m a bit of a bokeh addict and like to blur out my subjects against interesting backdrops. I like how it adds a sense of mystery to the subject. The fast F2.8 aperture on the XF16-55mmF2.8 definitely helped with this effect.

In this particular photo, I like all the layers of the scene, from the blurry man with the hat, the fire truck & the couple, to all the layers of buildings that fill the entire frame. I like how this image has that full; big city feel – kind of like NYC.

I also really like the complimentary colours: fire truck reds, oranges and yellows too!

Based on your style of photography, if you could put any improvements into a future X Series camera what would they include?

I love the size and discreetness of the X-Pro2 and Fujifilm systems in general. You don’t get hassled as much while taking photos out in public and can usually fly under the radar.

I would love improved battery life. I’m often shooting for long periods (both photos and videos) and the latter really seems to chew through batteries.

Another possible feature might be in body stabilisation. It has it’s pro’s and con’s but it would definitely be handy in my use cases. I’m not a fan of tripods and like to be agiler in my photography.

It would also mean that lenses could be made without IS, or possibly even used in conjunction (dual IS).

Do any photographers inspire you to ‘think outside of the square’ and shoot differently?

Other photographers constantly inspire me. I’m just as big as a fan of photography as I like taking photos myself so I’m continuously browsing the work of others.

Although my list of favourite photographers is constantly changing, here are my current favourites:

@benjaminhardman, @mattcherub, @donalboyd, @airpixels@monaris_@visualmemories_@pat_kay@5.12 and @nk7

Fujifilm X-Pro2 with XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR – 1/2500 – F2.8 – ISO200


Along with the X-Pro2 and XF16-55mmF2.8, you also used the XF35mmF2 lens. What did you find the main difference(s) between the wide angled lens and which lens out of the two did you prefer to shoot with?

It’s hard to beat the lure of a quality zoom lens – especially one that covers the 16-55 range. The convenience of a zoom lens brings versatility to it that allows you to be able to be flexible and react quickly to changing conditions.

If I were to pick one walk around lens out of the two, I would probably go with the XF35mmF2. The XF16-55mmF2.8 is a little heavy and large relative to the compact X-Pro2 body.

The XF35mmF2 is tiny! Coming from a larger DSLR system, using a lens that is this small is kind of mind blowing. Best of all there is no compromise with image quality, speed AND it’s weather sealed. Kind of hard to beat, when it comes to an everyday walk around / travel lens.

Fujifilm X-Pro2 with XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR – 1/1250 – F2.8 – ISO400


To view more of Benjamin’s work visit his site or visit any of his profile on Instagram or YouTube.

Other interviews in this series

Through A Photographer’s Eye: Drew Hopper

Through A Photographer’s Eye: Alamby Leung

Through a Photographer’s Eye: Ian Tan

Through a Photographer’s Eye: Dale Rogers

Through a Photographer’s Eye: Josselin Cornou

Through a Photographer’s Eye: Chris Hopkins

Through a Photographer’s Eye: Anirban Chatterjee

Through a Photographer’s Eye: Harmeet Gabha