Is this realistic or am I just being lazy?

Discussion in 'Medium Format Cameras and Accessories' started by Katie, Jun 5, 2012.

  1. Katie

    Katie Subscriber

    Messages:
    764
    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2010
    Location:
    Texas, USA
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I have been shooting LOTS of 35mm film lately (and have a rather large supply of it as well), but have the incredible Mamiya 7 system with 43mm and 65mm lenses that I don't use enough. I think I am one of those people that likes to "save" the good stuff for "special occasions". Well, I am headed on a trip - DRIVING, with my two boys (4 yrs and 10 yrs) through two states stopping at Carlsbad Caverns, Santa Fe, Angelfire, Durango, Silverton, Pagosa Springs and Mesa Verde. Some pretty amazing photo "ops" in my opinion...

    Since I'm driving, space is at a premium, and since I'm still handholding the 4 year old, carrying "stuff" is also at a premium. I will be at hotels the whole time, but there will undoubtedly be times when I'll be leaving some gear in the car (well, Suburban). I have stocked up on 120/220 film, and plan to make full use of my Mamiya system. Should I even bother with the Bessa R4A and 28/21 lenses? It's really small and light weight, but it will still "be there" in my mind (I will not leave it in the car unattended, so I would be carrying it with the MF gear) and of course, the $1500 value of the system being there is an added stress.

    Is it realistic to only take the Mamiya 7 with me for the whole 2+ week trip as my only camera? With 10 frames per roll (or 20 on the few rolls of 220 I have) will that be limiting to me? I don't intend to take a bunch of crap pics, so I am happy using MF, but just want to make sure that there are those of you that would be comfortable traveling with one system for a trip. (my boys each have a digi camera that they are bringing, too).

    I'm really leaning toward the one system (with extra batteries of course) with loads of film and a tripod/L bracket (and all necessary filters).
     
  2. lxdude

    lxdude Member

    Messages:
    6,942
    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2009
    Location:
    Redlands, So
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    First off, put a leash on the four-year-old.:wink:

    Considering the focal lengths you have with the Mamiya, I say leave the Bessa at home.
     
  3. pstake

    pstake Member

    Messages:
    715
    Joined:
    May 5, 2005
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I deal with this dilemma each time I go out of town, which is about 8-10 days a month. It's always about reconciling the quality of the photos with the risk and convenience. Simplest solution is one 35mm camera. Next simplest is one camera. And as someone who's very familiar with Mesa Verde / Durango and Angel Fire, and familiar with the opportunities you will have, I'd encourage you to take the Mamiya and plenty of film.

    Either way, have fun!
     
  4. cliveh

    cliveh Subscriber

    Messages:
    4,717
    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2010
    Shooter:
    35mm RF
    Decide on one system you need for this trip an stick with it. If it happens to be medium format, perhaps be more decerning before you press the button (although this should apply to any format). Also remember the gear is only worth the pictures you take with it, so stop being pecious about it, but use common sense about where and when you leave it.
     
  5. Katie

    Katie Subscriber

    Messages:
    764
    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2010
    Location:
    Texas, USA
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I'm gonna do it with just the Mamiya. Got the Domke loaded down, and with the tripod, I don't think I'll be able to handle any more than what's in there.

    In addition to my leash-less wild 4 year old, I'll be toting my 67 year old Mother with a bum knee. No husband this time. I'll be leaning on the 10 year old boy for doing lots of manly things for me. Hope he can change a tire...
     
  6. Katie

    Katie Subscriber

    Messages:
    764
    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2010
    Location:
    Texas, USA
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Wise advice, Clive. Thanks. Maybe I'll get over the preciousness of it this trip and shoot it more from now on...
     
  7. Klainmeister

    Klainmeister Member

    Messages:
    1,492
    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2010
    Location:
    Santa Fe, NM
    Shooter:
    4x5 Format
    I use that system here, almost exclusively and can highly recommend it for the places you plan on going to. The only problem I find is that sometimes 35mm doesn't quite capture the magnitude of some of those places you name, hence the Mamiya fits the bill quite nicely.
     
  8. Rick A

    Rick A Subscriber

    Messages:
    7,420
    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2009
    Location:
    northern Pa.
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    My only suggestion is to doubletheamount of film taken!!! I am envious of that road trip, even with two kids(did it with 4 kids when mine were little).Enjoy the time, show off the results later.
     
  9. Terry Christian

    Terry Christian Subscriber

    Messages:
    696
    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2011
    Location:
    Memphis, TN
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I'm envious of your trip, Katie! It's so easy to take way too much gear, but just tell yourself that you're sticking with only the Mamiya so that you can really get familiar with it and put it through its paces. Very often, art loves a bit of constraint.
     
  10. Thomas Bertilsson

    Thomas Bertilsson Subscriber

    Messages:
    15,206
    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2003
    Location:
    Minnesota
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Sage advice. When I travel I force myself to bring one camera only, so that I don't spend time wondering which camera to use. Frees one up to just look at things instead.

    Katie, have a fun trip! I hope you get lots of wonderful moments and memories.
     
  11. Vaughn

    Vaughn Subscriber

    Messages:
    5,307
    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2006
    Location:
    Humboldt Co.
    Shooter:
    8x10 Format
    My triplet boys were 12 when we went thru that area (including the Caverns) w/o their mom. Load up the 10 year old with a small well-padded day pack (ask him if he thinks he is old enough for the responsibility -- the best way to get enthused cooperation!) with the extra lens and film, perhaps the pod.

    Have a great trip!

    Vaughn
     
  12. Katie

    Katie Subscriber

    Messages:
    764
    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2010
    Location:
    Texas, USA
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Thanks so much everyone. I will take as much film as I can! I have here: pro packs (5) 2 Ektar 120, 1 portra 400, and 1 Velvia 50; 2 220 rolls of VC, a BRICK of TMX100, a BRICK of TRIX400, several rolls of Ilford - Delta 100, FP4, and Delta 400. In all, I have 70 rolls of MF film. I think I will take about half of it... or more? :smile: I plan to keep in it the cooler with the drinks and snacks so it stays cool - and in the fridge at where we are staying when not traveling. Of course, the weather there is not like here, so I shouldn't be so worried about keeping it cool!

    Special thanks to Ray (2bits) for the PM - I have now added Treasure Falls to my list of stops!
     
  13. cliveh

    cliveh Subscriber

    Messages:
    4,717
    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2010
    Shooter:
    35mm RF
    Katie, why not also take just one type of film. The variety of film you are suggesting would be a nightmare to me.
     
  14. Sponsored Ad
  15. Katie

    Katie Subscriber

    Messages:
    764
    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2010
    Location:
    Texas, USA
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    What about this?

    Color Negative:
    10 rolls Ektar (ISO 100)
    5 rolls Portra 400
    2 rolls Portra 160 VC (in 220)

    B&W:
    8 Rolls Delta 100
    3 Rolls HP5 (ISO 400)
    6 Rolls Trix (ISO 400) cause I don't have enough HP5 and I got it free

    My reasoning is I want to have 100 AND 400 ISO covered. This is enough for 1 roll of color and 1 roll of B&W a day (there will be 2 days of just driving and 4 days in the same place ... so I think there will be days I shoot nothing).
     
  16. cliveh

    cliveh Subscriber

    Messages:
    4,717
    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2010
    Shooter:
    35mm RF
    "Jack of all films, master of none".
     
  17. Mainecoonmaniac

    Mainecoonmaniac Subscriber

    Messages:
    3,960
    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2009
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    From my experience traveling with cameras, I find that I have a limited amount of energy. I have to schlep our gear inorder to use it. However, the lighter the fewer the gear, the more energy to see and photograph. Over the years, I've learned how to travel with less gear and lightening my load. Unless you have an assistant, less can be more. I remember my young and stupid days of having 5 primes lenses, a motor drive and 2 camera bodies. 30 years later, I'm older, wiser and have a bad back.
     
  18. Katie

    Katie Subscriber

    Messages:
    764
    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2010
    Location:
    Texas, USA
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Well, that's what I got, so that's what I'm taking. I'm very familiar with both portra 400 and ektar. I've also been shooting with HP5 and and the other deltas a bit. TriX Is my my least shot, but what with how much I have, I thought it stupid to buy more hp5 until I've at least given it a go.

    Is this enough you think??
     
  19. segedi

    segedi Member

    Messages:
    355
    Joined:
    May 26, 2010
    Location:
    Calgary, Alb
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I had a 3 week trip through a few countries in Europe a couple years back and took a Bessa R4A, 35mm and 50mm lens and a Bronica RF645 with 45 and 65mm lens. 80% of my images were taken with the RF645 and 65mm lens. 10% with the 45mm lens and the rest with the R4A and 35mm lens. So, you are fine to take just the Mamiya, now to film.

    Even though at 645, I was getting 16 frames a roll, I used just over half of the flm I brought. I shot deliberately and shot much less. Based on your available film stock, I would take the 10 rolls of Ektar and 8 rolls of FP4. Yes, it is only 18 rolls, but based on travel and your other responsibilities, I don't see taking more than a roll a day and that is 180 amazing images. And keeping the camera settings changes to the minimum, one ISO makes sense (well at least to me who forgets to change iso more often than i care to admit). But if you can't live without ISO 400, take the 5 rolls of portra.

    Enjoy the experience, sounds like a great trip!
     
  20. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

    Messages:
    19,997
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2003
    Location:
    local
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    yep ...

    have fun katie !

    john
     
  21. pstake

    pstake Member

    Messages:
    715
    Joined:
    May 5, 2005
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Katie, if you haven't been to Durango before, can I recommend that you dine once at Steamworks Brewery. I fancy myself a beer snob and their brews are delicious but they also have good food, including a family-size Cajun Boil every evening. Magnifique ... and no silverware required ... which makes it kind of fun for the kiddos. Also, would make for good photo fodder ... everybody digging into a big heap of corn and shrimp and potatoes.

    Hope you can share some of the photos when you get back. Mesa Verde is spectacular. Sounds like a great trip!
     
  22. tkamiya

    tkamiya Member

    Messages:
    4,252
    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2009
    Location:
    Central Flor
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    No backup camera? I know you want light but have one little failure and you are out of commission.... It's not like you can pop into a store and pickup a medium format camera....
     
  23. DWThomas

    DWThomas Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,899
    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2006
    Location:
    SE Pennsylvania
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I might lean toward two cameras, one loaded with color and one with B&W (unless the Mamiya has interchangeable magazines), but with the other considerations you have that might be a bit much. On long trips I like to have a second camera with me if for no other reason than redundancy. That way if the first one acts up I don't come home empty handed or have to do a panic camera shopping episode. It's been a long time - like 1965 - but I was in Durango and did the train ride to Silverton; there is spectacular scenery everywhere you look. Primary weapon on that trip was a genuine Konica FP with 52mm 1.4 and a 35mm 2.8.

    Whatever you do, enjoy it!
     
  24. jovo

    jovo Membership Council Council

    Messages:
    4,124
    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2004
    Location:
    Jacksonville
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    What matters most to me is whether I can actually remove myself from all distractions, and photograph thoughtfully. If you can do that then the Mamiya is the best choice. If you can only do it some of the time, take both. If it just ain't gonna happen, take the Bessa. Good luck!
     
  25. Klainmeister

    Klainmeister Member

    Messages:
    1,492
    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2010
    Location:
    Santa Fe, NM
    Shooter:
    4x5 Format
    Yes, I can also highly recommend Steamworks Brewery. Prescribed burn is an excellent beer (with green chilis). Hit up La Choza and Tune Up Cafe while here in SFe. Maybe check out the Valles Caldera and Bandelier one day if you're interested in wildlife, forest, and archaeology.

    Have fun!!!
     
  26. Katie

    Katie Subscriber

    Messages:
    764
    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2010
    Location:
    Texas, USA
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Thanks for the recommendations! Will add them to my list as I hadn't been there in sibling I had no idea where to go...