Camera? Doesn’t matter, shoot what you love! By Thomas Rhee

Camera? Doesn’t matter, shoot what you love!

By Thomas Rhee

I’ve been a visitor of your site for a number of years now and while it’s not the most polished looking site, the content is what speaks to me. It’s honest and down to earth.

Anyways, I’ve been into photography since my high school days starting with film, on and off again thru the years until around 10 years when I started taking it more seriously. Like you (Steve), I’m also very much into high-end audio, currently mostly Naim gear along with a Mac Mini and a Mytek 192 DSD DAC that acts as my music server.

Recently, my GF knowing how much I love photography, gave me a Fuji X100T along with the WCL-X100 wide conversion lens as a gift for my birthday. Also, my birthday gift to myself this year was the Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mk.II,. My other cameras include the Olympus OM-D E-M1, Fuji X100, Ricoh GR Digital III and a Canon 5D Mk.II. Of course, I’ve been shooting non-stop with my two new cameras so my submissions will be from those two, all of which were taken within the last two weeks.

The first photo is a street photo taken with my E-M5 Mk.II after having dinner at a restaurant located deep inside of a few alleyways here in Seoul, Korea. The image is of a waitress getting hot coals for a table-side Korean BBQ restaurant. The alley was pretty dark but fortunately there was a light in front of her that acted as a spotlight as well as the two open doors (two different restaurants) that brought in some light. Nonetheless, the ISO had to brought up to 3200 to bring up a reasonable shutter speed with the lens wide open.


OLYMPUS OM-D E-M5 Mk.II, 25MM, F1.8, 1/50, ISO 3200


The second image was taken on Buddha’s Birthday here in Seoul, Korea. Like most other Asian countries, Buddhism is prevalent and Buddha’s Birthday is a big event where thousands come out to celebrate. This image was taken at one of the Buddhist temples here, nearby where the parade was happening. There was a homeless man surrounded by families, children on a field trip as well as devout Buddhists who came out to pray that day. The homeless man kind of stuck out from the crowd and I captured this while he was eating a popsicle although I have no idea where he obtained it from. The tree in the middle signifies to me a the disparity of how others see him as well as how he sees himself.


OLYMPUS OM-D E-M5 MK.II, 45MM, F6.3, 1/60, ISO 3200


The third and last image was taken this past Sunday where my GF and I decided to go to a botanical garden just to have a leisurely Sunday and get away from the hustle and bustle of living here in Seoul. The place was amazingly beautiful and when I came across this scene, with a Juniper tree, decided to take a snap.

“Juniper & The Garden Of Morning Calm”



Anyways, thanks for reading and looking,

Thomas Y. Rhee


  1. Very few post full size images from M43 – would like to have seen them bigger, as my personal experience with M43 are not very good; I might not get the full potential out of the tiny sensor I guess.

    • Calling it a tiny sensor is a bit overdramatic. Unless you shoot exclusively with FF or medium format. I assume you can’t possibly use APS-C, which is only trivially larger than M4/3.

  2. These are beautiful photos, please post again! I really enjoy the colors in your third photograph. would you care to explain how you got those colors going? I’m using my X100s as an all black and white cam because I can’t get colors that I love out of it. It would be awesome if you said a few words on the subject.
    Thank you most kindly! 🙂
    Arthur Maslo

    • A lot of it is getting the exposure correct in-camera. However, there is a bit of latitude in the Fuji RAW files to be able to manipulate the image quite a bit during post processing.

      My typical workflow, regardless of camera, involves Lightroom, Perfect Effects and Alien Skin Exposure. Every once in awhile, with my iPhone 6 Plus, I’ll do all the processing in-camera with apps such as Snapseed, VSCO, Darkroom and/or ECP Photo.

      I can’t get into detail here about how I use those apps due to space restraint but it all boils down to getting the exposure right using the histogram and working with various color levels. Even when working with B&W images, my preferred way is to to use the color RAW file and convert it to B&W.

  3. Hello Thomas, very nice examples. A question for OLY: You have 2 images with 1/50 and 1/60 ISO 3200 you can not keep 1/15 or 1/8 and go with the ISO down with the image stabilizer?

    Greeting Klaus

      • Right, 1/50th seems the correct speed. However I would have liked to try darkening the whole scene by 1 or two stops using EC, to give more atmosphere and keep the ISO down. The scene looks a little bright to me, not overexposed, just not showing a dark alley. Good shots, thanks for sharing.

    • Exactly what David said. At even 1/50 and 1/60 I was taking a chance of subject movement. However with m43 gear, I prefer not going over ISO 3200.

  4. Enjoyed all your photos. Your title threw me, I expected you would be using a more basic camera, not the latest gear.

  5. The first image is really nice. Love the cinematic look to the image…has a very Ming Thing feel to it, too. Kudos to you!


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