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Olympus OMD E-M1 Wedding Photography

I recently got my hands on the wonderful Olympus OMD E-M1.  I’ve been shooting with the E-M5 for over a year now so I had some idea how great it would be.  I love what Olympus has done in the last two years.  For several years I shot with Nikon FX pro bodies and 2.8 zooms and their 1.4 primes.  Great stuff but certainly not discreet and very heavy after a long wedding day.  I love shooting weddings small and light with my Olympus gear.  It’s so easy to blend right even and at the end of the wedding night my back is sure grateful.

The E-M1 is everything I loved about the E-M5 and more.  Olympus fixed all the surf sized buttons and the viewfinder is simply outstanding.  Image quality at higher ISO’s is improved but that is an evolutionary improvement.  It’s certainly better but not Nikon DX to FX better.  The outdoor portraits in this post after dusk are shot at ISO 5000.  Things were running behind and we unfortunately missed some beautiful light that evening.  Luckily the high ISO capabilities of the Olympus were not a barrier to our creativity.

I love being able to set custom “mysets”  for different positions on the mode dial.  I mainly shoot in aperture priority but sometimes use subtle variations.  I have the “i-auto” position set for aperture priority with closest “eye” face detection enabled. Shutter priority I have set the continuous auto focus and Hi-Speed low at 4 frames per second.  I rarely use shutter priority.  I have the toggle lever set to switch between AFS and AFC.  The auto focus tracking on the E-M1 is a HUGE improvement over the E-M5.  In an instant without looking I can switch back and forth.  The level of customization is so terrific.

I do use the Really Right Stuff arcs swiss plate on the my EM-1.  It adds just enough height to give my pinky a nice place to rest and the design blends seamlessly with the camera. For lenses I shoot with fixed focal length lenses.  I use the Olympus 17mm f/1.8, 25mm f/1.8 and the 45mm f/1.8.  In addition I have a Zuiko 135mm f/2.8.  It’s a terrific lens.  It is ever so slightly lower in contrast and sharpness wide open but I am quite fond of it.  With the focus peaking on the E-M1 manual focusing is super fast. I can access the programable buttons on the front of the camera with my right index finger easily and have the top one programmed to enable peaking and the bottom the magnify the focus box.  The viewfinder is so good I often manual focus without even enabling the peaking.  Add that to the amazing 5 way image stabilization and I have a 270mm lens that I can hand hold at ridiculous shutter speeds.

Indian weddings are my favorite to work.  I can get right in on the action without being a distraction. Shooting small also sure helps with that. These images are from an Indian wedding I shot just north of Dallas about two weeks ago.  I hope you enjoy them.  If you have any questions about my gear or how I use it please feel free to let me know.

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ISO 5000

dallas indian wedding photographers

ISO 5000

dallas indian wedding photographers

ISO 5000

dallas indian wedding photographers

ISO 5000

dallas indian wedding photographers

ISO 5000

dallas indian wedding photographers

dallas indian wedding photographers

dallas indian wedding photographers

dallas indian wedding photographers

dallas indian wedding photographers

dallas indian wedding photographers

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  • Mark

    Thanks for the mini-review. Nice shots.

    I suppose I can tell this by looking at the photos, but how do you personally feel about the wide-open aperture difference between full frame Nikon and the four-thirds sensor in the Olympus? That and the AF speed and accuracy in low light are my main concerns.

  • You can’t get the razor thin DOF that you can full frame. I find myself shorten closer to the subjuct to compensate and I’m please with that solution. I do find the em1 accuracy much better than the em5. In extremes I will switch on the focus assist but rarely.

  • Mark

    Thanks, Phil.

  • Dimitris Chorianopoulos

    I’m making the switch too, had an em5 and recently bought an em10, I use fast primes too but I’m wondering about on camera TTL flash. I’d love to know what you use Phil.

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