Mercury Camera Promises a Truly Universal System

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Ever wanted to use your medium format Hasselblad lenses with your Bronica ETRS or something along the lines? Well a new Kickstarter called Mercury Camera wants to do something just like that. But it wants to go even further and let you adapt nearly any 35mm, medium format or large format lens with pretty much any negative or instant film back. To boot, you can also adapt any medium format digital camera back.

Just imagine the possibilities!

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The Best Medium Format Film Cameras for Shooting Landscapes

Hail In Temecula ©Abram Goglanian

While today’s digital cameras and a bit of smart editing can help you create pretty awesome landscape photos, I genuinely believe that very little can beat great good old 120 film when it comes to image quality. The process is much more involved and requires you to get a lot more right in the camera, but the results will be very worth it if you’re willing to do more in the beginning and much less later on.

There are loads of great medium format film cameras but if you’re into film then you probably can’t beat these.

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Getting Into Medium Format Film Photography on the Cheap

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Lomography LCA 120 product photos (1 of 7)ISO 2001-200 sec at f - 4.0

Those who state that they can’t use an APS-C sensor camera or smaller are seriously fooling themselves if they don’t at all want to experiment with medium format film cameras. Yes, you’re spending money on film and processing each roll, but you’re also forcing yourself to create better images with more careful and creative intent rather than sitting there shooting away. It’s one of the biggest pieces of advice I tried to teach at a recent workshop where no one came away shooting more than 24 images in a period of six hours.

Now here’s a big secret about medium format film: don’t need to spend a lot of money. Here’s how you can do it all for a couple of hundred bucks.

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Creating the Photograph: Sam Delaware’s “Katie, January 30th, 2016”

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Creating the Photograph is an original series where photographers teach you about how they concepted an image, shot it, and edited it. The series has a heavy emphasis on teaching readers how to light. Want to be featured? Email chrisgampat[at]thephoblographer[dot]com.

“I’m just starting out – and I also don’t want to sound like a pretentious amateur by fluffing my bio up with fancy sounding interpretations of my work.” says photographer Sam Delaware when I asked for a short bio about him and his photography. Indeed, Sam is just starting out but he’s already made a giant splash. Sam is a winner of the 2016 Word Photography Awards presented by Sony; and one of his portraits earned him this distinction. Sam is a photographer and student currently studying under a BFA photography program at Pacific Union College in Angwin, Ca. He’s only 18; but he’s already impressing judges with his work.

So when I found out that Sam used Kodak Portra 160 film for his submission to the Creating the Photograph series, I was deeply thrilled. It’s a first for us!

Here’s Sam’s story!

 

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Galaxy Hyper Speed 120 is Positive Photosensitive Paper for Medium Format

Galaxy paper

Galaxy makes positive photosensitive paper; and traditionally it was only available in large format. But today, they’re announcing a new Kickstarter for their entry into the medium format world. It’s called Galaxy Hyper Speed 120; and is a roll of photo sensitive paper that you stuff into your medium format camera and shoot.

For those of you who have only shot film: known that photosensitive paper is paper treated with photosensitive chemicals. So you essentially shoot on the paper, take it out, and develop it within a couple of minutes. It’s far simpler and faster than using negative film. With the Galaxy Hyper Speed 120 paper, they’re saying that you’ll just need a changing bag, a small tank, and the chemicals.

It’s a first in the industry in a while as most photo sensitive paper is cut to spec or only available with large format. To do this project, they’re asking for $20,000 and they have different rewards based on your contributions.

Personally, I’m really excited for this. Loading it up into my Mamiya RB67, Diana F+ in pinhole configuration or my LCA 120 is going to be very fun.

How Likely is Fujifilm to Get Into Medium Format?

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Fujifilm X Pro 2 product images review (1 of 12)ISO 4001-50 sec at f - 2.8

Photokina 2016 is going to be a very big time for the photo industry if what we’ve seen so far for this year is any hint of what’s to come. One thing that’s been on the mind of Fujifilm camera owners is if a full frame mirrorless camera or a medium format camera would be on the way at all. For years, Fujifilm was well known for its very good medium format film cameras; and in some ways it would make a lot of sense if an X Trans sensor found itself stuffed into a medium format rangefinder style camera or even a proper 645 DSLR.

But how likely is this to really happen?

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Phase One Introduces a New 100MP A-Series Medium Format Back

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Before I go on: no, I’m not talking about Sony A series despite what all the rumor mongers are saying. Instead, what we’re getting is a new IQ3 medium format back based on the ALPA 12TC mirrorless camera body. From what it seems, this is a similar back to the other 100MP beast that Phase One announced earlier this year, but instead it’s designed specifically for this system. To that end, the new sensor is also a 645 full frame format–meaning that it is a full 645 sized sensor and not cropped.

The ISO ranges from 50 to 12,800 and boasts a dynamic range of 15 stops. It can shoot at up to 1/500th or up to 60 minutes on the other end of the spectrum. 1/500th is fairly common for most medium format camera backs.

Each model of the camera comes with the 35mm Rodenstock Alpar lens. Two optional lenses are available: ultra-wide 23mm and 70mm ALPA HR Alpagon. The price? A whopping $56,000 is what this camera will set you back at.

Getting the Look of Medium Format Using Smaller Sensor Cameras

Model: Bec Fordyce

Model: Bec Fordyce

Many photographers have long known about the panoramic stitch process; which in modern times been called the Brenizer Effect after photographer Ryan Brenizer’s use of it. Photographer Glyn Dewis recently shared a video on how to do it.

Essentially, what you’re doing is visualizing a scene in your head–so this first requires a specific creative vision. Then using a telephoto focal length (85mm lenses or their equivalents are recommended) you shoot little bits of the scene starting from the middle and going around. The important technical aspect here to remember is that your lens needs to have a very shallow depth of field, the exposure/white balance needs to stay constant, and your focus need to be locked in on your intended subject. Then you switch to manual focus to ensure that the lens doesn’t keep refocusing if you’re using an autofocus lens.

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