Wednesday, 1 August 2018

Bronica ETSRi and Fomapan 100 Classic

Wow, it's been a month since I posted!  That is way too long!

But, this is sort of a special occasion, so I hope you think it's been worth the wait!

For ages now I have been wanting to get another Medium Format film camera.  Nothing in particular, just a Medium Format film camera.  2 posts ago, in June, I introduced a couple of new additions to my film camera collection.

Here are the results from the Bronica ETRSi.  The Bronica ETRSi shoots in 6 x 4.5 format (which gives an actual frame size of 56mm x 42mm).  I get 15-16 exposures from the one roll.  This is great because my other Medium Format camera (Voigtlander Bessa 1) shoots in 6 x 9 format only gives me 8 exposures which is more expensive per exposure to develop and scan.

I took me a while to get used to this camera as I was shooting; the waist level finder can be difficult to compose a shot if you have never used one before.  The image through the waist level view finder is correct in the vertical plane but everything on the horizontal plane is reversed.  This is because there is only one mirror in the camera (unlike a 'normal' camera that has a 2nd mirror in a pentaprism viewfinder).  You have to move and tilt the camera along its axis to compose the shot and get it straight.  Apart from that, it is the same to operate this camera as it is any other camera; use the light meter (or sunny 16 rule if you are familiar with that) and change settings for each shot.

The lens is a standard size for this type of camera - 75mm Zenza Bronica EII f2.8.  This aperture may not seem as wide as some 35mm lenses but DOF in a medium format camera is much shallower because of the size of the negative.  It is a lovely sharp lens but I now have to pick up a new set of  filters to fit!

Winding the film onto the film back was a new experience too.  Read the instructions a few times and then found a great video on You Tube that showed it being done.

Not remembering to remove the dark slide from the film back also caused me some slight angst when taking a photo; I'd wrack my brain trying to troubleshoot the problem and them smack myself in the forehead once I saw the dark slide that was still in place!  I have 2 things from this camera to put into my pocket now; the lens cover and the dark slide.

For my first film I wanted to use a black & white.  I had some Fomapan 100 Classic sitting in the fridge that I had never used before.  I had purchased this film because it had been announced that my favourite black and white film, Fuji Acros 100, was to be discontinued and I wanted to start looking around for a replacement.

The Fomapan 100 Classic is billed as a fine grain, sharp film and, because it is a Panchromatic film, it has a wide range of halftones.  I wanted to see if it would fit the bill and, actually, I think I like it better!  Usually with the Fuji Acros 100, I would still have to digitally adjust the contrast because it seems a bit flat out of the scan.  These photos needed no adjustment in that regard.  It has great contrast and a wide exposure latitude (which means if I screw up the settings, I can still get a decent photo out of it!)

So, I'll let the photos speak for themselves.  Needless to say, I am loving the new Bronica; I look forward to acquiring new lenses, the hand grip and flash, a pentaprism viewfinder and an array of filters so I can expand its usefulness.  I still have quite a few rolls of Fomapan 100 Classic (in 120mm and 35mm) still in the fridge also so keep posted!

Photos Copyright © Life with Jordy Photography.
All Rights Reserved

Thursday, 28 June 2018

Streets of Surfers Paradise

How remiss of me!  I'd had a great afternoon of street photography in the Cavill Mall at Surfers Paradise when we visited there last, and hadn't posted it yet!

We had been staying in a really nice AirBNB down at Tugun and had gone to Surfers Paradise for a river cruise up the Nerang River for lunch.  A very nice lunch and couple of wines whilst cruising the river and catching the sights.  After the cruise we walked up Cavill Avenue toward the beach; there was an afternoon market on, and we always love to browse at a market.  Of course, I had my camera and this area is a great place for street photography!

The Mall, and the Main Beach area was fairly buzzing.  It was the week before the Commonwealth Games and so there were last minute preparations going on as well as many international visitors who had arrived early to catch the Games.

I shot with my Canon 600D and 50mm f1.8 lens.  There were lots of different people in the Mall and those coming off the beach.  The 'theme' for Cavill Mall is the beach; everyone walks up to and back from the beach via Cavill Mall.  It has changed physically over the years with the addition of high rise buildings etc but the mood is still the same; sand and surf, sunlovers, some carrying surfboards, walking around in just swimwear; it's a very casual and laid back atmosphere and the feel of it hasn't changed since I used to visit from my home town of Beaudesert (about a 40 minute drive away) over 40 years ago!

Photos copyright ©Life with Jordy Photography
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Friday, 1 June 2018

The Collection Grows!

Well, what an exciting few weeks it has been!

My wife (Kim) and daughters went on a weekend trip north to Macksville.  One of my daughters was going to a wedding there and the girls decided to make a weekend of it.

Imagine my surprise when I get a photo from Kim of a film camera! They had been browsing in a bric-a-brac shop and she spied a Praktica LTL3 (35mm)!  It was priced at AU$39.  I zoomed in on the photo and it appeared in very good condition.  Kim must have been watching me and paying attention whenever I checked out vintage cameras in other stores; she wound the film winder, cocked the shutter and pushed the button to see if it would work ok.  She then opened the back and checked inside for any corrosion or damage and looked into the lens to see if it was clear.

She haggled with the store keeper and bought it home for me for AU$35!

It came with a Carl Zeiss Jena DDR Tessar 50mm f2.8 lens.  I had to replace the light seals and it has come up very nicely after a clean.  

I have loaded it with a Cinestill 50D film (crossing my fingers on that one considering the hassles with the last roll) and can't wait to get out and about on a sunny winters day!

A very spoiled husband!

I am always keeping an eye on (of all places!) Facebook Marketplace for film cameras.  Often people have a clean out and it seems most people aren't interested in a film camera anymore.

About a week and a half ago, a Zenza Bronica ETRSi (medium format) camera popped up in my feed.  It was very reasonably priced AU$300 and, appeared from the photos posted, to be in very good condition.  The seller had purchased it in the UK for a project that never quite got off the ground and she had never used it.  

Included in the deal was a Zenzanon EII 75mm f2.8 lens, a 120mm film back, waist finder and a 35mm film back also!

I was pretty excited to see the 35mm film back which, from all reports I read on line, was a panorama back.  That would be a lovely addition to the package.

I messaged her but the reply was that she was waiting on payment from an overseas buyer who was transferring monies the next day.  She did say that she would message me if that did not eventuate.  Well, true to her word, she messaged me the next day; she had not heard from her overseas buyer, would I be interested to have a look?

The next day, I went and checked it out.  Not a scratch on it!  Lovely clear lens and, the sweet sound of that shutter gave me goosebumps!  She did admit that she was not sure if the 35mm film back worked at all, hence the very reasonable price for the whole kit; she was throwing it in because it went with the camera.  It turned out that it was not the pano film back but just a normal 35mm sized back anyway.  I was not perturbed if the 35mm film back didn't work; I have quite a few 35mm film cameras!  If I can get it to work though, it will be a different way of shooting 35mm film.

So, done deal!  For AU$280 I bought home something I had been looking for for ages; a 2nd medium format camera!

The medium format camera I already have is a Voigtlander Bessa 1.  It shoots in 6x9 format and although I love the giant negatives, I only get 8 exposures from that camera.  This camera shoots in 6x4.5 format and will give me 15 exposures from the roll!

Tonight I have loaded it (that was an experience!) with a Fomapan Classic 100 black & white.  

It may take me a couple of weeks to get through both of these films but watch this space!

Photos copyright ©Life with Jordy Photography
All Rights Reserved