Friday, February 24, 2012

My first successful slides at Botanic Garden

The past few experience that i had with slides was pretty disappointing. Somehow or rather, i just cannot get the kind of colors and exposure that i should be expecting. This is one factor that made me feel like giving it up.

So finally i decided to give it one more try during my trip to Botanic..this time with a dedicated light meter and lots of advice from various people.

So here's the final result from Kodak E100VS with my Bronica SQ-Ai.

Flowers..the intense colors from slides!



There are lots of painters at the park, pardon the harsh warm skin tone





My 2 favourite pictures from the lot. It turned out exactly how i picture them in my mind.
Untitled-Scanned-06 40mm

Untitled-Scanned-05 80mm

Conclusion, if you shoot them well, you will be rewarded with their huge dynamics, intense colors, and the dreamy feel in the pictures. A look at the slides alone is more than enough!

Credits to Vanessa for picking up the slides from fotohub for me..

Sunday, February 19, 2012

My personal encounter with a Large format camera

If there is really one form of photography or system that i would try as much as possible to keep away from....that would be the Large format system. The poisonous 4x5 prints are deadly.

Quoted from Kenrockwell(thou i dont really like this guy)and had to agree on the below...
"4x5 excels in not just resolution, but because it can force the plane of best focus to match your subject (no need for depth of field), as well as its native perspective correction and exaggeration abilities."

I had a really close experience with it when i met zimmerman(the one who sold me the Bronica system), he showed me the amount of time needed to set the camera up and the quality of the prints from it...Indeed, it was not as tough as i thought it would be.

Somehow it motivated me to join my first MF/LF outing.

This belongs to Zguy, who purposely set up to show us how it looks like!

Looking thru the frame is like looking at an inverted ipad. The images are inverted..

And demonstrating to us, how they focus and shoot...

I definitely believed that there will be a day when i try this camera, but before that, i might need to go figure out how to develop the 4x5 negatives and slides. The only reason if you ask me, that i will consider shooting a LF would most probably be the quality of slides that i wish to see in a 4x5 format...
But no ones develop a 4x5 slides these days, so unless i learn to do it...if not, most probably i will still stick to a 6 x6 medium format..

Saturday, February 18, 2012

A day at Botanic Garden

Botanic Garden is always my favourite choice whenever i need a slow shooting experience. I think its a really nice place for MF, especially away from the crowds, no need for fast focusing and chasing your subject...and a nice stroll thru the nature refreshes me.

I brought my Bronica setup with me....Film used here was Fuji Pro 160S

Shades of Purplish
Shades of Purple

The bamboo grove
The Bamboo Groove trail

Ducklings by the pond

And here, i walked thru a rainforest within the park...



I couldnt resist taking a shot of him when he came by.


Well, all these shots are taken before David joined me...and i shot some slides where i will post them once i get them back from fotohub.

Mr Choo the artist!

Coincidentally, I met Mr Choo in Malacca for the 2nd time.
A Painter, artist and a great guy with tonnes of stories to share!


When asked for a pose, this is the best that he gave!


Monday, February 13, 2012

Really expired film

Few weeks back, i found some really expired black and white 120mm films and decided to bring it out for a session...
The results was quite horrible, especially after the first 7 frames. Well i guess im not that lucky as well..




Somehow or rather, it adds a bit of vintage old feel for these pictures as if they were cut out from 10yrs old newspaper :)

Sunday, February 5, 2012

The long long story of Me and Medium format to getting My Bronica SQ-Ai SLR

My first encounter with medium format was using my first Twin lens reflex(TLR), Yashica Mat 124G. I was completely sold after seeing the quality that came off the 120mm negative.

It was a pleasure to use the TLR, looking down at the screen as if it was a video recorder...a live-view on a manual viewfinder that is like a lcd on the back of the digital compact camera. Everything appear so nice thru the projected screen.

With just 12 shots for a roll of film, the smooth handling of the camera and all the attention that you get from the passerby, the whole process is pretty enjoyable! By the time you noticed, the film reached its last frame.

So how did a Bronica SQ-Ai SLR came into the picture??

This all happened since last month during our trip to Malacca, David brought his very nice Rolleiflex(Shown in the below entry) along. Well, with all the handling and poisoning, i was rather excited to pick one of this up...and i was so near in bidding one off ebay...but i never.

I had like 6 copies of the TLR in my cabinet, and it just dont make sense to get the Rolleiflex. Of course, its one of the best looking german made prestige camera but given the market price of it and the condition of those in the market, i just couldnt proceed with getting one.


But i didnt give up the idea of getting a camera, so i thought, why not start a thread in CS to ask more about Medium format SLR? Try out a new system instead of getting the Rolleiflex.
That was where i get to know more about the various different format that i can shoot with the 120mm film.

The decision-making process started with trying to decide which medium format SLR size I would buy into, 645, 6x6 or 6x7? Generally most 6x7 camera are quite heavy. I didnt like 645 format size although you can get 16 shots out of the 120mm film.
6x6 format compromise in all aspect and I decided upon 6x6. Now I need to decide which company to buy into.
Given the weight and size of the camera, the choice came down to only Hasselblad or Bronica.
As I was going thru the prices of both systems it became a perverse experience to realize how poor I was. The price of admission into the world of Hasselblad was affordable but subsequent purchases of lenses and accessories would not be. So much so that Bronica became the only realistic choice for me to pursue. I know given the price today vs the price in the past, it was considered very cheap. However, given the humble monthly income that i fetched, i decided to be a little more conservative in my spending.

Hasselblad like the Rolleiflex was famous for its aesthetic appearance that dig every single chick that chanced upon it. Well, since i couldnt afford it, i wont post a picture of it here!

In Summary, Bronica was designed by a Japanese guy who wanted a camera of his dream, probably something which most other brands cannot offered him. It was such determination and dreams that created one of the best camera system in the market.

You may wish to read more here.

i know many others would have go against the idea to get a system where the company no longer exist. But think it this way, if the camera spoil, picking any single part of it from the market is affordable. Repairing a malfunction hasselblad item can cost alot, there isnt any mechanical camera that cannot be repaired...:)

I spend weeks doing some research on prices and the camera and with the help of some of the seniors in CS, i managed to narrow down the package that i was looking for at my budget.
Finally, i picked this set from a very nice forummer(decided against buying it from ebay)

Its a complete set!

the camera itself looks awesome!

A portrait that i have always wanted to do!

It was almost immediate when i run a roll of Lucky 100 thru it!

How does it perform?

Shot using the 80mm f2.8 PS lens, developed using HC110 at dilution H, pushed 1 stop.


Some funny portraits to finish up the roll of film

It was an amazing experience using the Bronica! After 2 frames and some familiarization with the camera, the handling is smooth!
The pictures turned out way much better than i thought it will be!

Well after all, i have not use a hasselblad before so cant really compare the 2 but in my own opinion, this is definitely a good system for me! I wont be shooting lesser 120mm with it definitely! Vice versa, its going to be the start of a new shooting experience!