The X-E2 is capable of bouncing flash but only straight up. This to me is better than direct flash but this does not create dynamic lighting. Using a Foam sheet, spinlight 360, joe demb flip it, Rogue flash bender is miles better than a tiny onboard flash pointing upwards. The products I mentioned can point the external flash anywhere as well as pointing up. This way you can have directional light sideways. Since your prepping to shoot a wedding I'd urge you to learn how to bounce light. Read the website "Tangents"
I never claimed the X-E2's flash was an excellent solution, I pointed out that it's a very useful and often underappreciated tool... which it is. You can also bounce it off walls by shooting in portrait mode, as I did with it frequently.
Certainly a Master of bouncing flash is something that becomes second nature.
What I notice a lot is black/white photos can be used as a crutch to hide improper white balance issues or when improper exposure (lost details due to blown highlights etc) was used when the photo was taken. If the photo has a lot of grain due to a sensor limitation using black/white can help hide what the "non photographer" is familiar in critiquing a coloured photo. Also there are gifted photographer's that simply use black/white as their work flow (Jeff Ascough).
Here's an example of b/w from my wife's iphone 7. Due to the deeper dof and b/w you can have more in focus. The iphone 7 photo using 5x7 would probably look better than my imperfect fuji image i took.
The $3000+ fuji combo at 1/40 SS and iso 6400, no flash cannot get details back do to less dof. I guess I should have shot this photo at 12800 but that to me is already a written off image due to poor quality.
If I had a fuji flash in the first place a simple group shot like this would be a perfect simple tack sharp group shot. The fact that I used no flash with my fuji and the low light situation I had no choice but to use shallower dof softening some people. I actually used my wife's iphone 7 first seeing the "barely good enough results". I used the fuji afterwards for the sake of experimentation seeing how far I can go with iso 6400.
OK, so if the only reason the iPhone shot was better was due to the flash, why would you not just use the iPhone's flash (which is just an LED flash light) to light the Fuji shot? I've used my phone's "flash" to light shots from my main camera while out and about on several occasions... a perfect example of understanding the tools you have access to. Here's an example from my friends out on Halloween with me, I just held my cameras "flash" off camera to the right [IMAGE'S LINK: https://flic.kr/p/zEQ2KD]DSC08441.jpg
, on Flickr
Shooting available light during a reception may raise some brows as I'd be certain issues with lost details due to extremely high iso images. People look at the end product with no photographer whispering why the photos did not turn out that great
People can whisper all they want, in the end if the client is happy, then I am happy. There are plenty of great wedding photographer's who seldom use flash, Kevin Mullins is a great example of this. Moreover, I NEVER said I don't think flash is important... I use it frequently, but it's one tool in my bag and not a necessity for every shot (as you seem to be claiming).
As I mentioned many people lack bounced flash technique. As you can see many people use Fong lightsphere's and stofen caps thinking it softens light. This is a perfect example of lacking bounced flash technique and knowledge. You keep bringing up this bounced flash technique as though you're suggesting that I don't know how to bounce flash... I'm not sure if you're being intentionally condescending or what, but I use bounce flash and off camera flash all the time... so I'm not sure what you're really getting at.The photographer's responsibility is to capture emotional content and composition
. During this time also concentrating on producing fantastic image quality better than Uncle Bob with a Nikon D810, Sony A7Rmk2, Canon 5dmk4 etc. Having capable gear is one thing but also capturing a moment is crucial. I underlined the first and last sentence because I agree, those are what's crucial. Which has been my point from the beginning... very often a flash is not conducive to capturing the moments and subject matter that I want and I think that's the case for many people who have adopted a mirrorless system. Also, to suggest that you can't possibly have better IQ than an average Joe with a nice DLSR by not using flash is laughable to me. I've been to MANY different events and brought only my X-E2,
X-E1, X100T or even my old EOS M and turned out having more requests and more features of my shots than any of the other people who went to those same events with their FF DSLRs. Understanding your gear and knowing how to capture the moment in the most effective way are for more important than what gear you're actually using.
I will say I now can use my fuji X-T2 with even a cheap mediocre EF-42 with joe demb flipit (rogue flash bender or even black or white foam sheet) in low light taking photos of a large group. With flash it will be 100% better than any X-pro2/X-T2 shooting "natural light" at a high iso at f/5.6 (more dof for group shot). As a paid photographer not using a flash would be extremely unprofessional as you would not be assuring your clients a high standard of quality.What's interesting to me is that almost (possibly not even almost, possibly every) example you've given has been for a group shot... of course flash is better for a group shot... who even ever suggested it wouldn't be?
And here we go again with the back-handed comment about professionalism... my client chose me as their photographer after viewing an extensive portfolio, in fact they asked for me specifically through a friend because they liked my work. So tell me again how it's "extremely unprofessional" to give them the exact quality that they hired me for?
Photo journalistic style / stealth shooting using no flash is obviously ideal. However if your an events photographer this is not your bulk of your job of documenting an event. According to who? This depends entirely on what the client and what the photographer are looking for. Who hires or takes a job without knowing the details of what is expected or the style of the photographer who's doing the job? This fault would lie on the client who hired the photographer more than it would the photographer in my opinion.
I've had alot of discussion with friends that shoot natural light. I love shooting natural light but I cannot kid myself thinking I can shoot an event with a decent performing high iso fuji body with no flash. Shooting fast primes with shallow dof with high iso will blur and miss the surroundings providing less story telling to some degree. Stopping down aperture and shallow dof is a balance of different flavours in "look" while story telling. Also concentrating on proper exposure of human subject can easily blow out the highlights/details in the background. Balancing flash you can get intentional background detail as well as proper exposure of the subject. This is where a natural light shooter cannot control both subject and background exposure at the same time.
Again, where does this assumption that it has to be one extreme or the other even come from? I'll have multiple flashes with me for event coverage, doesn't mean I'll use them or need them for a majority of my shots. For the vast majority of shots that I take, flash isn't necessary because it doesn't fit in with my style of shooting.
My Canon 80D with Cactus V6 on shoe and 580EXii feels more balanced than my X-T2 with EF-X500.Again, I just don't get the "balance" argument, clearly subjective and if it bothers you then it bothers you, but I used my X-Pro2 with XF 35/1.4 and a YN560iii with a Rouge Flashbender for a few hours when I shot my mom and step dad's 10 year anniversary party and not once did the "balance" bother me. In fact the only thing that bothered me was the extra attention and gaze I gathered by having such a noticeably large flash/camera setup than my naked X-Pro2, made it much harder to capture people being natural.
My responses again in bold
Why do you "hate" that? So because they want to make an attempt at getting shots they like of their kids they're somehow beneath the rest of us? People like that only bother me when they make the assumption that they can now charge people for their shots (which is rare) or when they don't understand that there's more to it than the camera they choose. As a coach I know lots of the moms that you're referring to and every one of them acknowledges that there's much more to it than the camera and often ask me for advice on how to improve their shots.
What I meant by my comment was moms who start taking photos and charge like a pro but do not have one sense of knowledge of flashing techniques