I have been playing with Apple’s Aperture 3 for a few days and and so far I’m very impressed with all the features this digital asset management application currently has that I actually use. Keyword being “use“. I actually started my digital photography adventures with Aperture four years ago but I then got seduced by the bandwagon of photographers that use the defact application of Lightroom. I used LR3 for several years and just recently updated my libraries to LR5 but still something was amiss and that was all the tight integration that Aperture has with its built in tools for editing, sharing, displaying, book creatiion and more.
I mean thanks to Robert Boyer for pointing out quite a several key shortcuts on Twitter. Hitting the “F” key and going full screen on my 13′ Mac Book Air is just awesome, then hit the “W” key to toggle to the adjustment brick (its what Apple calls the exposure modules in Aperture) and start editing your image right there on a full screen preview. This experience alone to me is priceless and worth the price of entry into the Aperture way handling your photographs.
I do recognize that LR and its ACR component are rather powerful tools as well and there is nothing wrong with them but personally I’m enjoying things a lot more on the Apple side of things. If all the magical stars align then we should see the next iteration of Aperture 4 blazing through with some amazing features enough to leave lots of mouths drooling from the side. I won’t lie, the transition is still in its early stages and I don’t plan to bring over my Lightroom work over. I figured I would just start with a new library here and have a fresh start, why not ah. So that’s what I did.
Immediately, I discovered “Smart Albums” which are similar to Lightroom’s own Collection (correct me if I’m wrong here folks) which absolutely blew me way. I handled LR via the actual photograph folders and never really got the hang of creating Collections, not for lack of knowledge, but actually because to me, it seemed a bit tedious and unnatural. Make your selection parameters and then hop on up to another tab section all together and get cranking in there. So naturally I never really used them and got by my star and label system. Admittedly, not the most efficient way to handle your photographs but I had gotten used to it and managed them right along. Boy, I was I shocked to see the Smart Albums appear right below the Project. Project are like Lightroom’s folders, the kind were your images live, whether they are jpegs or RAW files, in Aperture these are called Project. Even the naming makes sense. Go out for a shoot and import to a Project, simple enough.
Folks, if you’ve tried and LR and have been feeling these sort of nuances like I did then I highly recommend without any reservations you get the Robert Boyer’s, Aperture 3 Organization, ebook which will get you up and running with the first thing you need to figure out – how to organize yourself in Aperture. Simple enough folks, its the best $7 dollars you’ll spend, coupled with the fact that, it alone will save you tons of time – it did for me.
So fast forward to one my first shoots and I had gone out with my two brothers Saturday evening to a bar called “World of Beer”. Yes, they do have all kinds of beer there, you name it, they have and most of the time on draft, just awesome in my book. Before I left, I was flipping coins to see which camera to take, the X-Pro 1 or the X100 LE. In the end, the X100 LE won as I have the original black Fuji half case that comes with the limited edition kit which is great. If you have an X100/s then I highly recommend the original Fuji halfcase as you can’t go wrong. I paired the X100 LE with the DSPTCH black sling and that dynamic duo was perfect and super stealth for the evening or just about anywhere you may want to photograph (I’ll be writing my views on this duo soon as well). I have a few beers with my brothers and the highlight of the night was my middle brother, Alex, being invited by the band to go on stage and sing, Say it Ain’t So, one of Weezer’s most famous song.
Well, here’s a toast with a Duvel for my new adventures with Aperture 3 and my X-series cameras.
The bar was very very dark and I’m sure the X-Pro 1 and 35mm 1.4 would have done better but I ended choosing the X100 LE for the stealth factor/flash option and I decided to the best I can with the tool selected. I had to use the X100 LE flash dialed down to the lowest setting and playing with the settings to get aperture and shutter to get everything right for an acceptable series of exposure to convey the atmosphere. In short, I think the X100 LE did a great job but then again, that’s just me and I’m biased haha. Rod if you’re reading, you know what I’m talking about.