Coachella 2012

Coachella 2012 was an interesting music festival experience. As a European, I’ve been to many music festivals, some small, some large. Since I moved here, I’d only attended Outside Lands, a festival in San Francisco’s beautiful Golden Gate Park. Personally, I think that without camping, one can’t really say it’s a ‘true’ music festival, and by that measure Coachella was my first festival in the United States.

I shot some photos with a new camera, as I wasn’t going to bring my 5D Mark II, I got a chance to put the Fuji X10 through its paces. I wasn’t disappointed.

All photos in this post were taken at the second weekend of Coachella with the Fuji, by me or Bre. Friendly notice: these photos are not yours. Don’t use them in your work or republish them without my permission. But you knew that, right?

The X10 proved to be quite good at low-light photography, especially considering its small size. While I gave its automatic panorama generation features a go too, these kind of capabilities are (to me, at least) little more than a gimmick or a bullet point on a box to sell more units.

It features some very nice smooth bokeh, too.

While all these photos show a rather calm and tame side of the festival, there was definitely plenty of action going on as well. Even at 106° F, people were not hesitating to get down and move.

It was important to remember to drink water every now and then, though.

While I had a lot of mixed feelings about the festival, it was a blast. I met some great people, and it’s always painful to say goodbye to the mindset one acquires after being at a music festival for a few days. It’s a magical thing. There’s no amount of money you can put on the inspiration you can get from an event you are simply required to immerse yourself into.

There’s no state between being at a music festival and not being there: your mind is in it. It’s in a maelstrom of music, people, atmosphere and motion. I hope to see many more festivals in the US.

Camera information: Taken with a Fujifilm X10

A new personal favorite, Fuji’s X10 is a smaller, cheaper brother of the famed X100 point and shoot. It has a rugged, classically styled magnesium alloy body, a manual barrel zoom lens with excellent optics and a 2/3″ CMOS sensor. Get it on Amazon.


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