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Author Topic: The Emotional Factor  (Read 626 times)

Rob C

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The Emotional Factor
« on: September 21, 2019, 10:02:44 am »

I am, by now, very accustomed to using both my D200 and D700 cameras. I have a mix of manual and af lenses, and the af ones are by far the more easy to use with those two bodies.

A few minutes ago, purely through the curiosity of wondering how my eyes might react today, post cataract ops on both, to operating a film camera again, I pulled out my pristine Nikon F3 and putting the 2.8/24mm manual Nikkor on it, went out onto the terrace to find out. It was a revelation: at once, all my old confidence was back at my finger tips, and I could focus exactly as I had been doing for years and years of film usage. And boy, did it feel great! By good fortune, whatever diopter lens lives on the pentaprism, which was perfect for me almost forty years ago, is now the same way again.

There is not a question in my mind that, for me, using a proper screen designed for manual lenses, complete with a beautiful, split-image finder, is the way for me to fly. If only digital backs had turned out to be Nikon's answer to digital photography instead of digital bodies. One unexpected observation was this: the F3 was not the lightweight camera of my memory. In use, it feels no lighter than the digital ones I have, though readings on a set of scales may suggest a difference that vanishes in the fact.

All that aside, the spiritual feeling, holding that F3, was so much better than digital has ever given me. I believe that matters quite a lot, and probably underlines why others love the Leica M varieties. I am also willing to accept that for younger folks who never used film cameras, this emotional buzz may seem rather odd, and in their case, certainly not necessarily felt should they pick up one of these old cameras.

Goddammit, I could even imagine the smell of a just-opened film cassette!

All in all, a nice postprandial surprise!
« Last Edit: September 21, 2019, 10:07:21 am by Rob C »
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KLaban

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Re: The Emotional Factor
« Reply #1 on: September 21, 2019, 10:15:57 am »

Time to raid the freezer?

Rob C

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Re: The Emotional Factor
« Reply #2 on: September 21, 2019, 10:45:01 am »

Time to raid the freezer?


No, no; I'll keep the contents for when I sell this apartment (please!) and return whence I can process! Could be some time...

;-)

Martin Kristiansen

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Re: The Emotional Factor
« Reply #3 on: September 21, 2019, 01:26:16 pm »

Amazing to look through those old cameras. My mother turned up with an old box and said I want the stuff in it. Turned out to be a Minolta SRT 303 with 50 mm 1.4 that that had belonged to my father. Amazing to look through the viewfinder. Clear and bright with a split image in the centre and fresnel around that and then a bright Matt screen. No clutter. A long easy throw on the focussing ring.

Iím not tempted. I bought an adapter and put the lens on my new Sony FF bodies.

The thing that really got me was the smell. It is so distinctive. I was immediately 14 again.
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Eric Myrvaagnes

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Re: The Emotional Factor
« Reply #4 on: September 21, 2019, 02:06:41 pm »

I am reminded that back when I had an 8x10" view camera, I often took it with me and set it up just to look at that glorious, full-sized image (Ok, so upside down but that didn't matter), without even bothering to put in a film holder.

I'll bet you can get a great deal of satisfaction, Rob, if you just take out that F3 a couple times a week and focus on something interesting.

OK, so it might be difficult to post the results her on LuLa, but you could at least describe them so we can let our imaginations play as well...

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Rob C

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Re: The Emotional Factor
« Reply #5 on: September 21, 2019, 02:20:25 pm »

I am reminded that back when I had an 8x10" view camera, I often took it with me and set it up just to look at that glorious, full-sized image (Ok, so upside down but that didn't matter), without even bothering to put in a film holder.

I'll bet you can get a great deal of satisfaction, Rob, if you just take out that F3 a couple times a week and focus on something interesting.

OK, so it might be difficult to post the results her on LuLa, but you could at least describe them so we can let our imaginations play as well...


That sounds a good idea, Eric: much in the order of the old travellers' tales by the fireside, but without the dreaded slide shows that were pretty much obligatory purgatory. You have a brilliantly perceptive mind!

Rob

Two23

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Re: The Emotional Factor
« Reply #6 on: November 29, 2019, 05:39:19 pm »

I enjoy old cameras so much that so far this year it's mostly what I use.  In no particular order I've been using a 1942 Leica IIIc, Nikon F3T, Chamonix 045n 4x5, Gundlach Korona 5x7.  I only shoot b&w film in the film cameras, but since August I've been heavily concentrating on doing wet plate (tin type) photography.  I use the Chamonix and Korona for that, and lenses made 1844-1865.  It's slow but a lot of fun!  I'm a "mechanically" minded person and love these cameras.  It's also been liberating to learn I make make interesting photos with camera gear from any age. :)


Kent in SD
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