Who are you and what is your profession?
My name is Othman Kammah but everyone that knows me calls me OT. I am a Business Analyst by trade and a Photographer by passion. I spent most of my life in various parts of the Mediterranean. Morocco, Spain, and France to name a few. Toronto, Canada is where I currently live with my wife, our pup, and our kitten.
After having grown up shooting film with my father and eventually stopping for no particular reason, I got back into photography over the last few years.
My other passion is music and I have been playing guitar for as long as I can remember. Both photography and music have had a heavy influence on shaping the person that I like to think I am; composed, and laid back 🙂
I like to think that these attributes shine through in my work, and especially in my Visual Essays.
What’s your Rig ?
I shoot exclusively with Fujifilm cameras and am absolutely loving it. Fuji’s attention to detail and customer service is something that you, unfortunately, don’t see from most companies. They have shown time and time again that they care and love their users.
After having owned the wonderful X-T1 as my primary body recently, I’ve had to switch my kit up and am now shooting with a lovely Fuji X-E1. The lenses I shoot with are the 3 originals: the XF18/2, XF35/1.4, XF60/2.4. I love how they fit my shooting style just perfectly, I guess Fuji got it right the first time for me!
I’m not a fan of front lens caps at all, so I always throw a high quality B+W UV filter on my lenses and leave the caps at home.
I also use an adapted Konica 57/1.2 lens that works beautifully on Fuji bodies (with an adapter of course). It satisfies my craving for manual focus and has those lovely flaws you can only get from these old lenses. I’m really excited to use the XF60 for some more up close and personal kinda of work… essays to come. I also have a Fuji X100S which is always by my side and I will never leave the house without.
For my lighting gear, I use Yongnuo RF-603 triggers (get the Canon version if you are planning on using these with your Fuji body) and two Yongnuo Yn 560 III speedlites. They are very affordable and just awesome to use for wireless off camera flash work!
My carrying brand of choice is by far Ona, I carry my kit around in the Dark Truffle Leather Bowery and have a Black Lima Strap on its way over. Ona’s products are made to such high standards, I can confidently recommend them to everyone.
What Hardware do you use?
I use a 13” Retina MacBook Pro with a 27” LED Thunderbolt for all my editing. Western Digital tends to be my go-to brand for storage and come to think of it I need to go get some more of those. When traveling, I’ve managed to work out a simple but efficient workflow using my iPad and various apps such as VSCO Cam and SnapSeed.
What Software do you use?
I initially used Aperture but quickly fell for Lightroom after a friend did a quick demo for me. I currently use its 5th iteration along with the wonderful VSCO film simulations that I’ve tweaked for my own personal style. I’ve been giving Aperture another try lately but feel right at home with Lightroom. I also use Pixelmator for the odd time I need to do some more extensive editing.
What would be your dream Rig?
Because I am a big fan of manual focus and the rangefinder experience, I will always have a soft spot for Leica cameras and everything they used to stand for. But as it stands, I am absolutely in love with my Fujifilm kit. They represent everything I love about simple and straightforward photography. They get out of the way and allow me to use them as a tool. Who knows, maybe one day I will complement them with a Leica M6 and get back to film photography.
What’s your favorite photography quote?
I thought of matching my buddy, and mentor, Kale Friesen on this one with Robert Capa’s quote
If your pictures aren’t good enough, you aren’t close enough.
That quote has heavily influenced the way I shoot and a few will tell you that I get really close to my subjects when out shooting in the streets. But another great quote that has also shaped my photography is by Ted Grant, a Canadian institution!
When you photograph people in color, you photograph their clothes. But when you photograph people in Black and white, you photograph their souls!
It taught me to get everything out of the way and look for that emotional connection to my subjects.