Daily Inspiration #261 by Minyan Zhu

Hi Steve,

I’ve recently been inspired by shooting with lighter and more purposeful gear. Picked up a Fujifilm X100 and a M8 with a few lenses in May and I’ve been having so much fun that I find myself shooting every day. The direct shutter and aperture and the focus rings* on these cameras connect me right to the pure visceral experiences of photography that I felt when I was just starting out. I feel reconnected to the process of photography that I’ve missed so much in the past years while chasing after the biggest DSLRs and zoom lenses. Thanks for publishing this site and inspiring people to go out and shoot! I owe you a drink or two ; )

*exclude manual focusing on X100. It’s accurate but a painfully interface.

1st three images shot with x100

last four images shot with Leica M8 (dog = 50mm summicron DR) everything else = vc 28mm 2.0 ultron.



  1. Very nice shots. I really like the 2nd shot with the X100.
    How has your experience been with the X100? The M8? Are they worth the money in your opinion? Which one would you keep if you had to choose? Which one do you like to use the most and Why?
    You’re taking the style of pictures I would be pursuing and trying to achieve.
    I am seeking opinions. I like the style but no the price of the M8/9. I like good performance in a pretty and simple package. Shallow sounding as that may be. L lens are wonderful.

    Best Regards,

    • Hi Howard,

      both cameras excel in different ways. I’d say the X100 renders images with more of a consumer look, aggressive sharpening, contrasty treatments of scenes, and lacks the mid tone rendering finesse of the Leica by a long shot! With that said though, the X100 renders sharply, super sharp from F/2.8 and up!!! it’s also much lighter and faster in operation than the M8. Also you’d have to consider the noise performance of the X100 is about 2 stops better than the M8 equivalent.

      I’ve made some of the worst images of my life with the M8 but also some of my favorites. Where the M8 excels is in how it rewards conscious and intentional shooting. The challenge of using the M8 with it manual controls makes it impossible to shoot with anything less than 100 percent of your concentration and effort. It’s an incredible feeling to drive all the controls and be responsible for the final image.

      In the end. both cameras are capable of producing equally great images for your self and for the public to view, and honestly, if you put the images side by side. I doubt that 90 percent of the people would be able to tell which image came from which camera. But the intimate process, the craft, the mystique and the joy of using a Leica makes my heart pound, and it’s making me a better photographer every day through it’s demanding but rewarding way of making images. To me it’s worth the price of admission of a Leica.

  2. Hi Min Yan,

    The pictures are awesome. You are able to capture all those elements in a beautiful setting.
    I like it very much and thanks for sharing. Just by looking at your pictures, I am able to gain some tips on how to composite my pictures. Long way to learn from you guys… : )


    Ngee Key

  3. Thanks guys. I shot everything in Raw and edited in lightroom. Just got my hands on the M8 about a week ago so I haven’t gotten a chance to exploit it’s strengths like I have with the X100. I’ll keep working on my craft and keep sharing my photos with you guys. Thanks!!! I’m so happy that you guys are all viewing and commenting.


  4. I have to agree
    I enjoy the first 3 images the most, not sure if it has to do with the camera or not.
    Regarding the first image, was that shot Raw or Jpeg?
    Thank you for posting

  5. really nice! they’re great images.. I really love the 1st three images by the X100. Keep on shooting n sharing dude 🙂

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