Three Generations

While were preparing some of our gear for a Photoshoot, we broke out some our old Medium Format Film Cameras, blew off some dust and admired the quality of the construction and how great they feel in the hand. Lurking in the background is our trusty digital Nikon D7000 and in the front we have a Mamiya C3 and Mamiya 645. The C3 was from my Father’s early years as a Photographer in the 50s and 60s. He showed up one day with this baby and proudly showed it to my Mom. Even at this time, the C3 was not cheap and likely cost several weeks wages. Mom was not pleased and instituted a “Zone of Silence” which according to rumors lasted several weeks! Same thing when he brought home a 12 gauge shotgun, but that is a different story!

The Mamiya 645 is not the most expensive of their line, but a sturdy workhorse. There is nothing fancy about this camera, it does have an internal light meter, but there are no “Presets” or Automatic Settings. These types of cameras really teach you Manual Operation, and being film, you really have to think about what it is you are trying to achieve, have confidence in your mastery of light and perform a “first time right” shot. There is no instant preview which we are now used to with digital cameras. We almost always shoot digital in Manual Mode, just because of our training with gear such as this – take the plunge and put your camera on Manual and experiment. At least you won’t need to wait a week for the proofs to come back from The Lab!

If you have any questions, just drop us an email

Happy Shooting, Kathleen and Erik

13 responses

  1. A friend gave me a Minolta Maxxum 7000. Luckily, I was able to find the user’s manual, so I’ve been having fun trying to learn it (never had anything but a P&S before :)).

    March 11, 2012 at 7:48 pm

  2. I love kit like this. I cut my teeth on an OM-1n before moving to a Bronica ETRs 645, nowdays we still have a couple of Olympus 35mm in use and a Rolliflex TLR that gets regular outings.

    March 12, 2012 at 12:49 am

  3. lmao, that story sounded about what happened to me every time I get some new kit. Sometimes that zone is good though 🙂

    March 12, 2012 at 1:13 pm

  4. That’s awesome Erik!! What a great photograph!

    March 12, 2012 at 4:42 pm

  5. Allan

    I recently bought a 1960s Leica M2 and a Rolleiflex TLR, hauled out my old Sekonic meter and tried to re-train myself back to what I used to be, a street shooter. I had a Leica M3 about 40 years ago and wish I still had it. I also had a Nikon S2 and I wish I still had that one, too. Does anyone remember Miranda cameras? That was my first SLR. Does anyone still make 35mm slide film, like Ektachrome or Fujichrome?

    May 24, 2012 at 11:34 am

  6. Allan

    When I became a wedding photographer I started with the Miranda but it wasn’t up to the task of shooting that volume of pictures and it it kind of wore out rather quickly. It was then that I switched to Leica and Canon and have been using Canon since the early 1970s. My first decent digital was a Fuji which I have since passed along to my grandson. I have two Canon reflex cameras now along with the Rollei and Leica.

    May 25, 2012 at 7:49 am

    • Hi Allan

      I started with Miranda and moved my way through Nikon pedigrees, film and digital, and now D7000. I am excited about new developments from Litro and Nokia (808 40MPix Pureview). Had my stint with Mamiya C300 twin lens reflex and 645 series as well…fun!

      May 25, 2012 at 8:25 am

  7. Allan

    In all the years of shooting, I never used a Rollei-style 120 TLR. Now that I have one I am making stupid mistakes like not knowing how to synch electronic flash. This is a whole ‘nother ball game from my 35mm world! The last roll of 12 yielded 3 usable negs, the rest were blank or a fuzzy mess. Expensive lesson. What I don’t understand any more is how we wore these super heavy cameras around the neck with a shoulder bag full of heavy lenses. I guess youth has it’s advantages, I couldn’t do that now!

    May 25, 2012 at 2:32 pm

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