Victoria BC street photography with the Fuji X100s

Hey all!

I recently spent a few days in Victoria, BC with the family and had the opportunity to wander the streets on several occasions with the Fuji X100s to shoot some street photography.  I found the people of Victoria overwhelmingly friendly… open to great discussion and allowing me to shoot a portrait of them.  It was no surprise to find out that Conde Nast Traveler rated Victoria as the third friendliest city in the world this year:

http://www.cntraveler.com/daily-traveler/2014/08/the-2014-friendliest-and-unfriendliest-cities-in-the-world_slideshow_3–Victoria–BC–Canada_10

My weapon of choice for these sessions was of course the amazing Fuji X100s.

Let’s start with this gentleman:

(click images to view at high quality)

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We were literally in town for about 30 minutes, and were walking into Chinatown.  This gentleman told me he owns a local noodle house, and was outside having a smoke.  As soon as we made eye contact he smiled, said hello, and asked where we were from.  Awesome!  After a brief chat he posed for several images, laughing and smiling the whole time.  An excellent ambassador for his city.

Incidentally, Victoria’s Chinatown is the oldest Chinatown in Canada, and apparently the second oldest one in North America (behind only San Francisco):

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chinatown,_Victoria

It also boasts the Canada’s smallest street, Fan Tan Alley:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fan_Tan_Alley

Literally, 50′ down the road, I was hanging out on the street while my girls were in a shop when these two characters asked to have their pictures taken:

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They had one of the best “one-two” comedic routines I’ve listened to in quite some time.  Hilarious!

I found this narrow alleyway in Chinatown that had great leading lines.  It took some time to wait for the right person to enter the scene:

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There always seemed to be something to snap a picture of walking the streets of Victoria.  During a walk from Beacon Hill Park to Victoria’s Fisherman’s Wharf  I found this bike chained to a fence looking a little… decrepit:

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A local laughed when they saw me snapping the pic and said that the bike had been there for “quite some time”, and seemed to get smaller and smaller as time went by.

Victoria’s Fisherman’s Wharf is very small if you have been to San Francisco’s, but it has charm and, most importantly, mini donuts!

One of the cool things they do there is make small fish available so kids can feed the Seals…. who basically act like a hungry Golden Retriever under the dinner table:

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It seems that feeding the “wildlife” is a theme in the Victoria area.  This swarm of ducks was around a lady who sat down on a bench in Beacon Hill Park:

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And, finally for this post, a brief comment about the downtown Victoria nightlife…it is awesome.  On an August Monday night, at 11pm or midnight, there was still a great crowd of people downtown having a blast:

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I have to make a brief comment about this last picture to my photography friends.   This photo was shot late at night, handheld at f/2.8, 1/45th of a second I believe, at ISO 6400.    And, no one knew.

The Fuji X100s is an amazing street camera for so many reasons and they all came into play in this photo.  The leaf shutter is remarkably quiet.  No one hears the shutter going when the image is captured.  The camera is small… no one even sees it in your hands.  And, seriously, ISO 6400?  Sure, you can see some grain, but to capture this image on a dark street is a testament to the quality of cameras Fuji is putting out these days.

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That’s about it for this Victoria street photography post.  It is a great city, one that everyone should visit when they have some time.  When you are there, interact with the people, they are great!

I have another post coming soon about capturing sunsets and cityscapes in Victoria.  Stay tuned.

 

 

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