How the Fujifilm Camera App saved me
Sometimes I wonder why companies spend the time developing new features, when they don’t appear to have a lot of value. At least to me. Well, one of those new features just proved very beneficial to me.
That new feature is the built-in Wi-Fi on the Fujifilm X-E2 and the corresponding iPhone Camera App.
I have used the Camera App to transfer photos from the X-E2 to my iPhone and iPad in the past, but I have never considered it appropriate for my work photography, as it doesn’t integrate with my Lightroom workflow (import, rename, tag, title, caption, process, upload to Flickr). To maintain that workflow, I use a laptop, with LR installed, when I travel. I typically do that processing and delivery within a couple of hours of the end of the event, as I wait for a flight home. I can edit a very large number of images in a short time and deliver the initial batch of images to be posted, so that my colleagues can start to distribute to government websites and social media outlets. Upon returning to my office, I can integrate the laptop files and edits into my main LR catalog, and finish any edits and delivery of images.
Last Friday, I was shooting a student-led forum at a high school in Surrey, B.C., that included the Premier, Minister of Education and over 600 students. On this occasion, due to the time it took to drive back to the airport, there wasn’t enough time to do any post-processing before catching my return flight. On top of that, when I arrived at the small float-plane terminal at YVR, the terminal Wi-Fi was spotty at best. With only about 20 minutes to go before my flight, I wasn’t going to be able to deliver even a bare minimum of images to HQ, using my normal workflow, and the event had ended over two hours before. Can you say “missed deadline?”
But wait, there is a happy ending to this story.
My last option turned out to be a really great solution. I connected the X-E2’s Wi-Fi network to the Camera App on my iPhone. As I reviewed the images on the back of the camera, I transferred five shots. Once transferred, I previewed the images to check focus. From the initial five, I selected three shots to tweak in SnapSpeed, before using my work’s web-based email to deliver to a colleague at HQ, with my apologies for not doing the normal tagging, titling and captioning.
This entire process took less than 15 minutes, including the very slow delivery of high-res photos from my phone by way of the poor network connection at the terminal. And, the resulting photos were of the great quality I always want to deliver. HQ was thrilled to have something to post within a reasonable timeframe and I could wait to edit the balance of the photos from the event until I returned to the office, at the end of the day.
Because there isn’t a good LR workflow option on portable devices like iPhones (and who would want to do the work there anyway?) or iPads, I will continue to take a laptop for working on the road. But for delivering a few photos in a timely fashion, the Wi-Fi capabilities of the X-E2, and X-T1, give me a very handy solution.
Nice to have the engineers of these cameras developing technology that I don’t think I need until, well, I need it. And, it just works. Great.
Screen shot courtesy of Fujifilm.
Photos shot with the Fujifilm X-E2 with the Zeiss Touit 32mm f/1.8 lens.