Dear Santa,

Dear Santa,

I should probably start telling you how good I was this year or how excited I am to see you soon but there is something that bothers me and I have to get it off my chest first.

What the hell happened to the Fuji X-Pro2? Come on Santa!! I thought I could rely on you. You brought me the X100 in 2011 and turned my photography world upside down. A year later, you clambered down my chimney with the X-Pro1, which got me hooked on the X-series line. And then…year after year on Christmas morning I’ve jumped out of bed and run to the chimney to check out my stocking, searched frantically under the tree and…nothing! The Grinch had stolen my Christmas!

In the meantime, the Sony geek circle and the snobby Leica mob are raving on about how good their cameras are, how super-modern their sensors are, how large their pixels are – as though I knew what they were talking about. A Sony “friend” even complained that he had to buy more stockings each year because you keep getting him all these camera toys. What’s wrong with you? Are those elves of yours watching Trump all day long or what? What am I supposed to do? Sure I show my friends great images from our travels but you know very well that they don’t care about the photos – they just keep eyeballing the pixels and bragging about their fancy cameras!

Now I hope you will correct your blunder this year. After all, I have been a very good boy all year long. At least I tried. Sure, sometimes I gazed at some pixels under my pillow or read some chat room propaganda or got pink cheeks when looking at some gear but these moments of weakness soon passed.

Each time you are tempted to bring me a lump of coal, please take a look at our work! Kasia and I have visited some awesome places and bled our eyes out to create really smooth imagery. We went over the top to connect with our subject like talking to our dog. I ripped my pants on the fence wire in attempt to craft a great composition. I even bounced the light off my uncle’s bald head to create a visual masterpiece. Sure, sometimes I failed but it is only because I ventured outside my comfort zone. Or I couldn’t see anything because an idiot with an oversized camera bag poked my eye with his tripod. Don’t you want us to see creatively?

I also spent countless hours working on our upcoming book, “The Right Way to Start in Photography,” as if I knew what I was doing when I started. You know how hard it is to jot down a sentence or two. You know it very well – or perhaps you don’t. After all, you spend your days sipping coffee served by your horde of elves, reading all those letters and…never writing back, at least to me.

But what am I talking about? I am sure this year you and your elves are very busy packing all these cameras, lenses and some coal (for frumpy Nikon and Canon crazies). Patrick of Fujirumors said that you might be late this year so some of us might receive our presents in January. You know what? I have been waiting for the Fuji X-Pro2 for so long that few more weeks shouldn’t be a big deal. But please don’t make a fool of me this year. Not this time! You know that January 15th is my birthday, so you had better deliver. You wouldn’t do it to me again, would you?!

Come on, Santa!


P.S. Please don’t show this letter to your elves. I don’t want to cause any embarrassment. I have enough bullies on the Internet making fun of me.  



2015 © Kasia & Olaf Sztaba Photography. All rights reserved.

10 thoughts on “Dear Santa,

  1. Olaf, it’s Santa Claus. Yep, I sometimes answers letters kind people send me (the thing is that my english sucks, so I don’t like to write too much).
    Anyways, I wanted to ask you: what is this gear acquisition syndrome?? You are comparing your Fuji with other brands (who cares about Sony? ;), you are convincing yourself that you need a new camera? But… you learned people, the ones that read your blog, to slow down, to see before shooting, not to be nervous about the anouncment of a new tool. Your philosophy is to take your trusted Fuji camera, a set of quality lenses, and enjoy shooting. How would a new camera put more emotions in your pictures?
    So as a new X-Pro wouldn’t help you, and would push your beloved X-T1 to the rank of obolete old camera (even that it’s pictures quality would still be the same), I will offer you a pair of socks. With this you will be able to walk to all those nice new locations, and enjoy shooting your 16Mpx camera, and make beatiful pictures.
    Sincerely yours,
    P.S. Don’t ever say bad things about my elves again!

    1. Dear Santa,

      Wow! This is so awesome! I have never ever received a letter from you before.

      Ok, I admit. This X-Pro2 excitement got hold of me and for a few dark minutes I abandoned my principles and jotted down my wicked letter. So please forgive my transgression. I didn’t mean any harm. Instead please look at my imagery and hard work, you will understand that it was just a moment of weakness, which I promise, won’t happen again.

      I also would like to apologize to my Sony and Leica friends for the hurt I caused. You guys are the same artists like we are and deserve full respect and recognition.

      You are right, photography is all about seeing, creating and enjoying the process.

      I will take the socks. In fact, last time when I was shooting the Winter series it was really cold and I am sure that new socks would make a huge difference. If I can ask, could you please get me all black. I don’t want to parade in red socks. Here in British Columbia some bears are still roaming around despite cold weather and the red colour could attract their attention. My wife Kasia would not be happy if a bear eats her favourite Fuji X100T (and me).

      Thank you again for taking your time and writing to me.


      P.S. Please pass my sincere apologies to your Elves. I appreciate all the hard work they do, especially because they are working their butts off for minimum wage.

      1. Dear Olaf,
        Santa(from now call him Fanta), always listen you, don’t forget the Kaizen stuff delivered those years!. He must have a little-long test of pre-production X-Pro 2 to feel again as a kid you know. I want to share with you that the new body kick some snow balls with stunning Dynamic Range (you must see to believe!) and… be ready, be patience and prepare the cookies for him!

        Sincerely yours,

        Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer loves Fantas portraiture work.
        Your blog ring da bells!!

      2. Dear Union Elves,

        What a great year! First, Santa wrote back (I mean Fanta), now Union Elves!
        “The new body kick some snow balls with stunning Dynamic Range…” – WOW! I am not sure I can take it anymore!
        OK Olaf, you need to calm down and start preparing the cookies – lots of them.

        Thank you Union Elves!


  2. Your buddy buying stockings for Sony, all he’s putting in them is a new body every six months. Sony doesn’t doesn’t know how to make lenses.

      1. Hi, Sony shooter here (and previously Fuji film shooter, I used basically every medium format film camera they made at some point).

        Unfortunately JD is right: Sony doesn’t know how to make lenses. The ones they offer are all over the place both in terms or focal lengths and maximum apertures, and they are either huge or outrageously expensive (especially considering the level of sample variation!).

        Luckily I don’t care for AF. Never did, even when I used AF lenses when shooting Nikon on film first and Canon on digital after that. So I can keep using my amazing Contax Zeiss glass and mop the floor with the Sony lens offering 😉

        That said, I’m waiting not-so-patiently for Fuji to release an X200 or whatever, basically an OVF-free (or if you prefer EVF-only) body with the guts of the X-T10, or at the very least a 23/2 with a rendering similar to the one found in the X100 series.

        Santa, if you’re still here please take note!

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