Friday, April 2, 2021
Immediately noticeable on top of the camera to the right of the prism is a little switch that toggles between "Full" and "Half." Flipping this switch changes the size of the negative. As you can see below, little metal curtains pop out between the shutter curtain and film plane to form an 18x24mm negative. There are lines etched into the focusing screen to help you compose your half-frame images (or preview what they might look like while still in full-frame mode). When in half-frame mode, black arrows appear at the top of the focusing screen to help remind you.
This may be obvious to most, but keep in mind, that the field of view changes when switching between formats. The field of view of the 40mm f/1.8 lens I used with the camera became around a 60mm equivalent when I switched to half-frame.
Besides the ability to switch between formats, the Konica Auto-Reflex is a pretty standard 60's SLR. Shutter speeds (1~1/1000 + B) are selectable via a knob on the front of the body. There's a self-timer, which also locks up the mirror for less vibration, which is a nice touch. The viewfinder is frustrating for eyeglass users such as myself, as your eye pretty much has to touch the finder to see the entire focusing screen. With my glasses between my eye and the finder, I can probably only see about 3/4 of the frame. The focusing screen has decent brightness with a large microprism assist, and is not interchangeable. Build quality is about average. The Konica doesn't feel cheap, but it isn't nearly as robust as a Nikon or Pentax from the era.
Below are a few photographs I made with the Auto-Reflex P, using a 40mm f/1.8 Hexanon and Ilford Delta 400 film.
Monday, March 29, 2021
Popular Photography, 8" x 10", collage on wood board.
All of the collage material was taken from issues of photography magazines from the 1960's and 70's. The man in the upper left is Alfred Stieglitz, one of photography's first champions, and a notorious pervert (just read about his relationship with Paul and Rebecca Strand). The man on the right is the cover boy for Miranda camera, which featured a hyper-sexual ad campaign in the 60's that completely objectified women. While I'm happy that more women are getting recognized for their work behind the camera these days, we still have a ways to go.
Alfred Stieglitz, Rebecca Salsbury Strand, 1922
Miranda Camera Advertisements, 1960's