Saturday, 28 June 2008

Currently on eBay

I've decided to post up links to a few interesting cameras on eBay if your interesting on increasing your collection.

Koroll-35 from sloz1664. It looks like quite a cute little camera which could bring out some interesting shots.

Olympus Trip 35 from ancnamma. It is very hard for me not to bid on this myself, but I'm trying to cut down on compulsive spending until I get more money! But this is your chance to own the classic Olympus Trip 35 camera. The pictures look ever so vintage!

A Pair of Brownies from ancnamma. I have the one on the right all ready, and I must say it's great! It does only take the big 6x9 shots which means that you can only fit eight on a roll of 120. It's perfect if you want to start making your own prints as you can just make contacts without an enlarger. It can fit 120, but be careful as it can jam.

GAMMA Photo Developer Enlarger from deejoared. This last one looks like a really great deal! It's a full enlarger package with lens, filter and everything. Unfortunately it's only available to the UK (sorry those of you in the USA, etc...) and the shipping is quite high, but if you can get it for a decent price; it's a bargin.

So, sory that all those were British sellers, it only just ocoured to me that half of the visitors here are American. So I sould do this again some time with international sales.

Holga 120GCFN - Reviewed

I'm probably not quite qualified to talk on the subject yet; the photos haven't been developed. But still I like the feel of it - big and chunky, easy to use, black - all things a good camera should be. The only criticism that I will make is that the sunny/cloudy switch does nothing! Absolutely nought, nil, none! Even in the manual it says it does. I'm definitely going to mod that.

Compared to the older models it is a lot more practical with a tripod thread, B/N setting for the shutter and that flash is amazing. I'm waiting for the shots to get back from my Ilford Sportsman so I can get the envelope to send off my first roll to get developed. It was 135 because I didn't have any 120 at the time. It was actually quite easy to mod with the two mounts you get. I'll post up a video tutorial sometime.

But in conclusion:
Style: ****
Usability: ***
Quality: * (will it leaks a lot)
Cool: *****

Wednesday, 25 June 2008

My Darkroom Comeuth

My home darkroom is finally coming together. I've got the safelight, film, fixer tank... but the Developer has had a delay. I ordered some Ilfosol 3 (I hear it's a relativity new thing) and it's gonna take 4 weeks to come! I have had a film that snapped in the camera last summer in a film canister in my room for all that time and I'm never goung to see the image at this rate!!!

A little quiry about paper and paper developers; what is the best value for money? Ilford multigrade and just some RC paper?

Tuesday, 17 June 2008

Secret Holga?

The Holga that I have bought is a 120GCFN. But it's only mentioned on Wikipedia! Not even Camerapedia or dedicated Holga sites recognises it. They all have what the 120N is, the FN, the CFN, but not the 120 Holga with the colour flash and a glass lens.

Oh well, I did find some great pictures people have taken with it on Flickr.

My Search for the Imperfect Camera

My love for retro cameras is something that has just about completely taken over my life as of late. I've only had a definite interest in photography since December of '07, with my first actual "real" camera being a Pentax ME Super. Since then, i have bought & sold (on ebay) over sixty cameras, all of which are retro cameras. Out of all the cameras that have crossed my path, the absolute gem of them all so far, would be my Kalimar A 35mm camera.
Why this camera, you may ask? Well, just by looking at it, the Kalimar A doesn't offer much. Equipped with a Terlonon lens, 1: 3.5 / F=4.5mm, the iso only goes up to 200. It doesn't even have a sync hot shoe, an adaptor is needed for the use of a flash. However, this solid little hunk of metal produces some of the softest, vignetted images i've ever seen out of a vintage camera! Made by Taisei Koki Welmy in the late 1950's, this is one camera i will keep with me for years to come! Although my quest for the "imperfect" camera continues, the Kalimar A comes as close to perfect as an imperfect camera can get.

Creek Walkway
to see more photos taken with this camera, click here:

Monday, 16 June 2008

I Have a Holga

Well I say "have", it's in the post from Hong Kong. I'm really looking forward to it coming and shooting my first roll of film. Does any one know of a cheap place in the UK that will cross process E6 in C41? I found "Hampshire Darkroom" who do jut the developing for £5!

Also, what is the cheapest possible scanner that will scan 120 film? I was looking at the Epson V200 which scans 135 and slides, but could you just plonk 120 on the bed and let it rip?

Tuesday, 10 June 2008

I Dream in Large Format

I found this old lens from a broken 135 slide projector that had been hanging around my room for years, and it gave me an idea. I had held it up to the light before the protected an image onto the palm of mt hand before. But it just dawned to me that I could make a camera! It's a big aperture (about 2.? I think) and gives nice soft edges and focuses beautifully!

I got a couple of old shelves, sanded all the layers of paint off and smoothed them down. Cut them all up on the band saw and I'm currently in the process of fitting the bit together.

The lens, being from a protector, has a nice wide thread on it, perfect for a chunky camera! I added a little bit of ply wood in the make a good enough thread and it moves nicely. I'm going to add black felt insulation around the edges to make it light tight then away we go!

Monday, 9 June 2008

Oh so Very British

I just took this photo of my younger brother with my "new" Kodak Vest Pocket Camera Model B. I had these strange little loop thing that looked like they were meant to hold something; so I made a little flag British flag for it (as he sees himself as a perfect image of an English gentleman) and this is the result. I would have taken it with one of my retro cameras, but I don't have any 120 right now.

Sunday, 8 June 2008

Wanted Dead or Alive: Retro Camera Adicts

Do you like vintage, retro and classic cameras? Do you also love sharing you knowledge, tips, tricks and best shots? If so then I want you! Simply leave a comment on this post and we can get started!

Lomo Photo Pool

One of the best groups on Flickr is LOMO - It's for all the people who use the retro and wacky Lomographic Society cameras. These are vintage-style cameras that were originally inspired by the Soviet Russian Lomo LC-A, a simple camera that gives iconic shots that you could only expect from a something Russian and lo-fi.

Imge by Hryckowian

Friday, 6 June 2008

Kapsa: Brazil's Secret Camera

A couple of weeks ago I was given an old, 120 camera spay painted entirely gold; don't ask why. But anyway, I cleaned it all up with white spirit and washing up liquid and did a pretty good job of getting all the paint off. It looked like one of the later Kodak Brownies, but had a little logo of some kind and the words "INDUSTRIA BRASILEIRA": Made in Brazil on the top. It was getting more intriguing. On the front, under the lens, it had big sliver letters spelling out "KAPSA" (Brazilians seem to like their capital letters). So I did a little Google search and came up with very little; things like the "Korean American Pharmacy Student Association" and an Arabian dish made from chicken and rice. With the general search being a bitter disappointment, I moved on to other things. I had a gander at Flickr and found a handful of people who still use them.

I thought to myself "that can't be all there is on the internet!" and had another look at the camera. Then I noticed that on the metal bit around the lens was the peculiar word "VASCROMAT", again in block caps. Crossing my fingers, hopping I found something relevant. It was a hollow victory when the 75 results came back 0.49 seconds later; they were all in Portuguese! And most were just telling you how much they were worth. I did manage to find the most important information. The shutter speed. It is apparently 1/100. Which means that I have to use 160 ISO film. Which unfortunately does not want to be found easily. So rather than wasting my life hunting film in the vast planes of eCommerce websites, I decided to use 400 ISO that was stopped down to 200 with an ND 2 filter.

The camera has a little window on the inside as a mask for the incoming light. It it no bigger than an inch square, so I could just get some ND lighting gel. You can buy a whole sheet for the same price as a regular glass filter, but I only want a tiny square. That is where a little help from my friends come is. I know a woman who is a TV production designer and she said that she could have a word with a lighting technician who would have some ND gels. So until then I'm stuck with 400 ISO colour negative film. I did read about red scaling colour film some time ago and remembers something about you having to adjust it exposure by a couple of stops. I looked it up again and indeed, the celluloid is ND 2-3 so I just did that with some 35mm with the canister blue-taced in upside down where the new spool would normally go and taped the leader to the take up spool and I'm looking forward to seeing the results.

Image by Rodrigo Moraes

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