Showing posts from June, 2015

print them or lose them

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My very first DSLR was the Canon 350D, which I still use.  I decided to upgrade from a Nikon Coolpix 775 because my sister was getting married, and I needed to get better photos of the event - not as the official photographer of course, but as the guy grabbing all the candid shots of the family and friends.  I did just that and got amazing photos of the day which everyone appreciated.  Back then, disk space was quite a premium, so I’d archive photos away in CDs.

About a decade later I was feeling nostalgic and decided to have a look at some of those photos.  I found the CDs exactly where I left them in storage, hurried to my computer, oh wait, I couldn’t.  I had a macbook that no longer included a CD/DVD drive.  Ok, fine.  I obtained an external drive, hooked it up via the U…

asahi pentax spotmatic take 2

After throwing my toys out of the pram a couple of weeks ago about the Asahi Pentax Spotmatic + Super-Takumar 50mm f/1.4 setup + Expired Kodak Gold 200 setup, it's clear now that the fault was all mine.  I did not have a full grasp of the properties of expired film.  Sure, the behaviour of expired film is capricious, but apparently there are some rules of thumb I could have employed.

In my second attempt, I used a fresh Agfa Vista 200 instead.  Apart from a little loss in contrast because of the almost head-on light source it was all good.

I did get some looks from the restaurant staff, and a smile from a certain older gentleman across the room as I composed the photos.  A 35mm lens would have been more fit for purpose, but where can I get a 35mm f/1.4 lens without having to swap a kidney for it?

olympus 35 sp

I remember when I was first searching for a good 35mm rangefinder, there came a point when it was between this one and the Canonet GIII Q17.  Goodness knows how many hours I spent watching YouTube videos and reading forum reviews, but I never did get my hands on either, until now.
The Olympus 35 SP that I found is in near-mint condition.  In my excitement I popped in the usual Agfa 200 film and headed outdoors to snap some photos before even bothering to familiarise myself with the camera first.  Besides, I'd shot so many rolls with its siblings the Olympus 35 RC and Olympus 35 RD, it's pretty much second nature to me now.  Boy, was I wrong.
Straight away I couldn't understand what the heck I was looking at when I looked through the viewfinder.  The RD, and even better, the RC spoils you with speed/aperture information in an easy to understand way.  What I could see in the SP were a bunch of numbers I was sure meant something, just not to me.  I went ahead and snapped some…

asahi pentax spotmatic

I had been cured of GAS, briefly. I came across this beauty for a very affordable price and I had to have it.  The Asahi Pentax Spotmatic itself wasn't what caught my attention at first, but rather the lens mounted on it - the Super-Takumar 50mm f/1.4! I couldn't believe my eyes. I assumed something must have been seriously wrong with the camera. I picked it up for a quick inspection; looked through the viewfinder expecting to see a giant fungus obstructing my view, but no, my view was crystal clear.  I then went ahead to play with different shutter/aperture combinations and sure enough, absolutely smooth on every setting. I grabbed it, parted with very little money, and jumped on my imaginary getaway horse and rode hurriedly into the sunset.
After both my Prakticas broke and the Helios lens on my Zenit-E got slightly damaged, I'd been looking for another reliable SLR.  I couldn't wait to take the Spotmatic out for a spin, so I loaded a Kodak Gold 200 film which had b…

an autumn day in the park

Early autumn is still my favourite time to go about taking photos.  Something about the contrast between the rustic leaves and the bits of vegetation that are still green.

someday I'll fly away

I actually hate flying.  My extensive understanding of the physics, and statistics of flight do absolutely nothing to cull my fear of flight.
Flying is unavoidable these days, however, especially if you have family spread across four continents.  This year, I've already been on a plane too many times for my liking.  From now till year end, there are many air journeys to come.