I recently discovered landscape photography for the “way of the soul” and with it the joys of working with film and those incredible “brick and mortar” cameras.
For my landscape work I didn’t imagine shooting on my usual “swedish square” and looking for alternatives for 120 film I came across some items, gems I might say, that I simply could not let pass by.
Like this one:
A crazy Goliath of a range-finder kind, the size of a pack of corn-flakes with a hard mounted 90mm lens. Looking around the internet to get a better idea I came across this line: “.. and was a kind of ‘standard‘ equipment for japanese tourist bus drivers, in that this camera would allow them to take the picture of any monument with all of his 50 passengers in front of it and still have enough space for each face on the negative so people would actually be able to recognize themselves in the printed picture..” That put the hook in me.
I took it for a walk when I was in Rome last autumn to see if it worked properly and this is the result I got.
Seeing these 56 x 85mm slides (Fuji RVP 50 Velvia) in front of you on the lightbox is breathtaking. I’m not good enough a writer to make this experience available to you here, but I hope the slides speak for themselves:
It doesn’t have a light meter which you wouldn’t need anyway, either because you’re doing ‘serious stuff*’ for which you wouldn’t trust it, or because your just shooting (as I did here) but there you have your sunny-16-rule. This was older Velvia I had been keeping in the refrigerator so I rated it as 32 ASA. (ASA=ISO)
* It’s a pity the camera doesn’t have a ‘B’ exposure option – which is effectively preventing the camera being used for most of my landscapes (there’ll be a dedicated post about the landscapes I took in France in november) as I took most of those with times between 4 and 16 seconds. (I was so angry when I discovered that my Pentax 67 consumes battery power just to keep the shutter open! After I had ‘exposed out’ my reserve battery I was stuck to times to under 12 seconds ;(
I will definitely take the Fuji 6×9 on my next trip – even without “B”, at least it has no battery that could break down.