Sunday, March 3, 2013

Skeletons From The Closet - Some February Results With the Super Ricohflex

Back on February 4, I introduced February's SFTC selection, the Super Ricohflex twin lens reflex camera.
(Click Here) to read about the camera.
 
This has been a tough month to get out and shoot, but I didn't let that stop me. Here is my first installment of results.
 
On this particular morning, I went to the waterfront in Washington, DC, which is essentially a series of floating fish markets tucked alongside a marina full of big yachts. It seems that I end up here once in a while. Last time was with another TLR, a Rolleiflex. (Click Here) to read that post. This time, it was the Ricohflex, loaded up with Kodak Tmax 400 film.
 
Doing Business, by Reed A. George
Ricoh Super Ricohflex, Kodak Tmax 400 Film
 
Don't Slip!, by Reed A. George
Ricoh Super Ricohflex, Kodak Tmax 400 Film
 
Dramatic Shadow, by Reed A. George
Ricoh Super Ricohflex, Kodak Tmax 400 Film
 
Crab Man, by Reed A. George
Ricoh Super Ricohflex, Kodak Tmax 400 Film
I had to crop this one to remove a distracting element. I went with the "normal" 4x6 ratio.
 
I find that twin lens reflex (TLR) cameras give me a fresh perspective for a couple of reasons. First, the square format. It allows for a whole different type of composition. There's something close and intimate about it. Second, since you don't really hold the camera up to your eye, it seems less confrontational to your subjects. I tend to put my eye close to the magnifier in the TLR hood, but shooting at waist level is even less noticeable. If I have enough light to shoot with hyperfocal settings, waist level shooting is fine.
 
My Super Ricohflex is a relatively new addition to my collection. I find that for some reason it tends to produce soft images if I'm focused close to the minimum distance (close up). I am not yet sure whether this is due to my own motion blur when holding the camera, or if the focus is not adjust quite right. In any case, it does a nice job at five feet or further away from the subject.
 
Quite a lot of fun to shoot. I've got some more images from the Super Ricohflex to share, but I haven't scanned and processed them all yet. Keep looking back - more to come.
 
March's SFTC selection, the Zeiss Ikonta, also has a square format. It is not a TLR, so shooting will feel quite different, but it should share some of the compositional qualities of shooting a square picture.
 
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