Thursday, September 26, 2013

Roll: Wolff's Flea and Park Ridge

Last weekend Katie and I took a trip to the weekly Flea Market, which takes place in the Allstate Arena parking lot. I brought along my Olympus OM-2n with a roll of Fuji 200, and tried to capture some of the weird stuff that i saw for sale. Take a look!

On the way home, I stopped to take a couple photos of a cool deserted motel. It was completely fenced off, and since I didn't feel like getting arrested that day, I took my photos from behind the fence. I liked that the Christmas lights were still up!

Aaaaaaand here's some other random shots that I took that day.

The Pickwick in Park Ridge

Well, thanks for looking!

Monday, September 16, 2013

Print: Echo (Part 4)

I made this print in my darkroom this afternoon. It's a multiple-exposure of five different houses on my parents' block. I used my Mamiya C330 with an 80mm lens on Arista 200 film. I'm almost halfway done with this series of nine!

Thanks for looking!

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Drawing(?): Exakta VX

Until I really got into film photography a few years back, I used to draw and paint a lot. I still enjoy drawing and painting from time to time, but photography is just a lot more fun (for me), and has become my artistic medium of choice. People like to call me a "photographer" because I do photography, but I view myself more-so as an "artist who practices photography." Today I got pretty bored after work, and decided to draw a sketch of my Exakta VX. I used a mechanical pencil on a Blick sketch pad. It probably took me about two hours. The perspective's a little wonky in places, but I actually quite like it. If you want perspective to be perfect, just take a photograph.

Thanks for looking!

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Spotlight: Leica llla

I've always had an interest in Leica cameras, but have never had enough extra money lying around to buy one. About a week ago I found what was labeled as a Leica IIIf with a scratched up 50mm 1:2 lens on Etsy for a little over $200. I went ahead and bought it, since a IIIf body alone is worth almost double that amount.

Well, it turns out that it wasn't a IIIf at all, but rather a IIIa. The IIIa is a precursor to the IIIf, and is a bit less advanced (No flash synch, for one thing). The IIIa the guy sent me also had a bunch of haze in the rangefinder (which makes for difficult focusing). So, I was disappointed, and have since arranged to send the camera back for a refund. BUT,  I figured I might as well test it out since I had it for a few more days.

The Leica IIIa is a very finicky camera, even for a camera that was made in the 40's. It doesn't let you change shutter speeds if the shutter isn't cocked, and there are two different dials for the fast and slow shutter speeds. The shutter release, for some reason, does not have a thread to accept cable releases. Most annoying, however, is the method to load film into the camera. Instead of opening from the back with a hing like a normal camera, the bottom plate comes off and you have to blindly stick the film in, and hope that it catches on the sprockets. You also have to cut the film to have a longer leader in order for the loading to work. I'm not going to go into details, but just take it from me... it's a chore.

My IIIa came with a retractable lens...
Which is pretty cool.

When I finally had the camera loaded properly, I took it on a walk through a local cemetery after I got off work at Crate and Barrel. Here are some of the shots I took with the IIIa. I think they mostly turned out cool, even though the lens was scratched up pretty bad (My original plan was to buy a new lens if I liked how the camera handled).

Take a look!

Thanks for looking!

Monday, September 2, 2013

Spotlight: Argus C3

I've been sick with a pretty nasty cold for the last week, so I thought I'd stay at home today and talk a little about one of the most well known classic cameras of all time, the Argus C3. Depending on how old you are, there's a good chance that your father, or grandfather, owned an Argus C3. The Argus C3 was in production from 1939 until 1966. Woah! The C3 was the best selling camera of its time, selling over TWO MILLION units over its lifetime. The C3 has been called the "Model T" of cameras, because it made 35mm rangefinder photography affordable for everyone, not just news-reporters and richy-rich dudes, who were using their Leica and Contax cameras that cost about five times as much as the C3.

Construction-wise, the Argus C3 has everything you need to start taking photos. It has a coupled rangefinder (with separate windows for focusing and composing), shutter speeds ranging from 1/10th to 1/300th (+ Bulb), and a standard 50mm f3.5 lens. One little feature I like is how you can switch straight from instant to bulb by simply twisting the shutter release button; you don't even have to touch the shutter speed dial. One thing I dislike is the placement of the shutter-cocking lever; it's placed right where my finders rest while holding the camera.

I really like the look of this camera. Sure, it looks like a Brick, but it's a pretty brick. I love the contrast between the shiny silver knobs and the black Bakelite and leatherette. I picked up a little metal hood at a flea market about a year ago that just happened to fit on the C3. Sexy!

Being so common, the Argus C3 was one of the first classic cameras that I owned. It was also one of the first old cameras that I put film through, so it holds a special place in my heart. Being one of the first old cameras I used, my pictures did not turn out so great... so when you look at these photos, please remember that they're old, and don't represent my current photographic ability! Thanks. :)

But wait! There's more! I also own a slightly different version of the Argus C3, called the "Matchmatic."

It has a slightly different color scheme, as well as a packaged-in light meter. The Matchmatic was used in the movie adaptation of "Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets" by the character Colin Creevey:

If only my Argus could take living photographs...

I haven't film tested my Matchmatic, since the rangefinder is foggy, and some of the shutter speeds don't work right. Oh well.

Thanks for looking!