A camera designed for the night stalkers among us, this is a wide-apertured, high ISO hungry camera ready to turn night into day.
I’d been toying with buying the Fuji Natura Classica for some time – ever since reading a review on this rather wonderful toy camera blog
I always felt there was a gap in my camera collection for a point and click of this sort. It seemed that my photo-taking would stop as soon as the sun went down, and I just didn’t have the patience for a tripod. Also, I was tired of taking along my SLR to concerts so wanted something that could cope with the low-light demands but that would also slip in my pocket and didn’t weight a ton. I guess seeing the Natura Classica on the Lomography site pushed me over the edge. Yes, it’s expensive, but I was in the mood for treating myself!
So firstly, on a purely superficial level, this is one cool looking camera. Maybe I’d become too used to having black tape all over my cameras (I’ve even drawn arrows on my Diana to remind me how to compensate between the viewfinder and the lens), but holding something so new, so shiny, so untouched by human hands.. It gave me a new thrill. This is a beautiful little machine. Slick, quiet and simple to use – it’s point and click, but not as we know it.
The settings are pretty basic – choose the mountain logo for landscape shots, the night portrait logo for.. night portraits. Otherwise just do what I do and point, click, move on. My first roll was shot as a test run. I wanted to see just how good an image I could get in my usual haunts – Tube stations, dark London streets, bars, galleries. All places where I’ve always had hit-and-miss results.
The results from the Natura were exactly what I’d been looking for – naturalist night scenes, unblemished by a harsh flash. And smooth bright light, even in a dimly lit gallery. Obviously the f2.8 lens coupled with 1600 Fuji film were the reason, but strangely I’d used the same film in my LC-A previously with far less impressive results. This camera does exactly what it says it will, and does it beautifully.With 800 or 1600 film the ‘NP’ mode kicks in and the camera does its damn best to read the scene and expose it in a way natural to the eye.
During these sun-starved winter days the Natura has become my camera of choice. It’s an odd feeling to wish the sun away after years of toycam photography has trained me to do the opposite, but it’s also inspiring. Suddenly I’m scanning the night-time world for potential snapshot moments where previously I hadn’t even bothered.
I’m still a new user with this camera, but I truly feel it has given me a kick where I needed it. And any camera that refreshes your view the world has got to be a good thing, right?
Check out the Fuji Natura microsite here