Hours of Idleness-A Photographer's Journey in St. Louis

Fuji X-T1

When I originally bought into the Fuji system back in 2018, I elected to go with the X-E3 and X-T20, which have been excellent cameras and have supported the wide variety of work that I do. However, in choosing to go with those camera bodies, there were a few compromises–with weather sealing being one. A couple of years later, as my family planned our first trip to the Great Sand Dunes National Park, I became plagued with the fear of sand-logged cameras leading to an inability to work. My solution was to pick up an older, used (and weather sealed) camera body to supplement my gear on excursions such as this. Enter the Fuji X-T1.

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My Best of 2022

1. Historic River Des Peres Sewer Tunnel, from Mound City Chronicle (for Terrain Magazine)

Despite taking a lot of photographs in 2022, very little photography was dedicated to my several ongoing projects (though significant that little bit was). This is due to several intervening factors: 1. my focus on exhibiting has picked up steam; 2. my focus on publishing a photobook has become realized; 3. I had wonderful assistance with my photo organization; and 4. it was hot as heck for a lot of the year.

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What’s in my Camera Bag, 2022?

photo by Harper Gray (my oldest son)

It has been a while since I have shared a true, “what’s in my camera bag?”-style peek into the gear that I use on a regular basis. I am going to take the opportunity to really deep dive into what I pack in my primary kit, my everyday carry, and for travel or street photography. I will also summarize my thoughts on Fuji, after three years of using this system as my primary choice.

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Fuji GFX 100s

The museum where I work may be updating the camera equipment in its photo studio, so Fujifilm USA sent me a GFX 100s and three lenses (GF 24mm f/4, GF 45-100mm f/4, and GF 120mm f/4 Macro) to test out for a week. I’ve been shooting Fuji’s X series for several years now, and I consider it a very competent, versatile system. However, there is “capable” and there is “CAPABLE”. This camera fits easily into the latter, as you will soon see.

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My Best of 2021

1. St. Louis Riverfront, from Mound City Chronicle

You wouldn’t know it from this blog (considering that this is my first post of the year), but 2021 was an opportunity for me to stretch my wings a bit and expand horizons for my work. For much of the last ten years, I’ve been primarily focused on assisting other artists in St. Louis, whether that was through Photo Flood Saint Louis, curating, teaching or mentoring. The effect of this was that I had lost sight of promoting myself and my work as an artist–to the degree that it had been more than ten years since my last solo exhibition. This year, all of that changed.

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My Best of 2020

Posted in Adventure, art, Arts Writing, awareness, Fuji, Hike, photography, prime lens, prime lenses, Uncategorized by Jason Gray on December 20, 2020

1. Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve

It feels insane to type it, but 2020 was in some ways a more stable year (personally) than those of recent memory, despite the overshadowing of a global pandemic and extreme political uncertainty.

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My Best of 2019

Posted in Adventure, art, Arts Writing, awareness, Fuji, Hike, photography, prime lens, prime lenses, Uncategorized by Jason Gray on December 1, 2019

1. Assateague Island National Seashore

2019 was a true ‘Tale of Two Cities’ kind of year. I’ve experienced some of the darkest moments I can ever remember this year, as well as some of the most uplifting. Now, where to begin?

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Great Smoky Mountains National Park (with kids), Part 1

In our modern world, there are precious few places that entertain and enrich the psyche in a way that satisfies wholly, despite whatever wild expectations or seeming familiarity one may have. Places static, though still offering continually different experiences. Places wild, mysterious, and at times, magical. ┬áPlaces that achieve everything already described, even though they are among the most loved and most visited of their kind. Great Smoky Mountains National Park is one of those places, and I’ll soon share how best to enjoy it with kiddos in tow.

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Virginia Sublime Part 2

Posted in Adventure, art, beer, family, Fuji, Hike, Jason Gray, links, Park, photography, prime lens, prime lenses, Travel, Uncategorized by Jason Gray on July 21, 2019

Virginia is a state where the Nation’s history unfolds, but it is also a place of great natural beauty and strong, local community. It is home to saltwater sunrises, cool mountain mists, and almost everything in-between.

If you read Virginia Sublime Part 1, then you already know how this survey of the State is structured, but just in case, this is a report back from my family of four’s recent trip to Virginia (and nearby). The State has essentially five distinct regions, of which I have now visited three. In the last article, I covered the Valley and Ridge Region and the Piedmont, while this post will focus on the Coastal Plain/Tidewater Region.

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Chouteau Island

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The Mississippi River provides so much recreational diversity throughout its over 2,300 miles, across ten U.S. States. In Missouri, the river bottom is a place that makes all of the life around it possible. It also carries the weight of death, in the form of floods and drought.

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