MF for close-up portraits

Discussion in 'Medium Format Cameras and Accessories' started by fastw, Aug 2, 2012.

  1. fastw

    fastw Member

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    Hi everyone, my name is Wojtek and this is my first post/question.
    After shooting digital exclusively for the last 10 years or so I decided to go back to film, at least for personal work.
    My new project involves shooting a lot of portraits in India and I like to fill the frame with a face and something like a Blad with 80mm won't quite do it. Not sure if a 150mm would get me any closer. Tried a 21mm ext. ring but it's very limiting. Traded the Blad for an Xpan. Love it, but not for portraits. Going to keep it, but want to do the project on film only and am not sure what to try next. Open to any suggestions. SLRs, RFs, but not TLRs.

    Cheers, Wojtek.

    Melbourne, Australia
     
  2. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member

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    Yes, a 150mm on Hasselblad will do what you want.
     
  3. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member

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    p.s. for close-ups like that I often find a Softar 1 (or similar) to be of great value.
     
  4. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member

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    p.s. Other idea would be 90mm to 135mm on a Nikon 35mm camera. Again, some sort of softening might be advisable. I use a duto on mine
     
  5. naaldvoerder

    naaldvoerder Member

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    With MF do you mean Medium Format or Manual Focus? If you mean Medium Format, the Rollei SL66 might be a good choice. With the 80mm I can get a package of sigarets to fill the frame, if you want closer you can even reverse the lens on it! Is not the ideal travel camera though....
     
  6. segedi

    segedi Member

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    And even the 8mm extension will get you a bit closer. But I found the working distance to be a bit far away, might not be the best for cramped quarters.
     
  7. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member

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    True. I haven't used extensions and really should try that. The working distance with the 150 has been OK for me so far. I try to avoid cramped quarters - still expereince a bit of claustrophobia from past work experiences. :smile:
     
  8. SuzanneR

    SuzanneR Moderator Staff Member

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  9. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member

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    Suzanne... have you used the SF lenses on RZ? That option almost tempts me to replace Hasselblad with Mamiya.
     
  10. fastw

    fastw Member

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    Don't own the Blad anymore and would have to consider something cheaper.
     
  11. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member

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    Prices on Hassy are quite low these days. Don't know if RZ option is much cheaper or not since I haven't seriously looked.
     
  12. ColdEye

    ColdEye Member

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    How about a TLR with a Rolleinar 2?
     
  13. SuzanneR

    SuzanneR Moderator Staff Member

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    Do you mean Soft focus lenses? No, just the 110 wide open!!
     
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  15. wharris

    wharris Member

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    I would have to say HANDS DOWN a Mamiya 645 pro TL with the ever awesome 80mm 1.9 is breathless =) you can pick up a cheap set at KEH for almost nothing! =) dont be afraid to buy from their bargain bin thats where I got my set up =)

    img088.jpg img089.jpg img132 copy.jpg img133 copy.jpg img136 copy.jpg img156 copy copy.jpg img167.jpg
     
  16. wharris

    wharris Member

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  17. DWThomas

    DWThomas Subscriber

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    I'm not a portrait shooter, but I have a Bronica SQA that will focus down to 1:1 with the 110 mm f/4.5 macro lens. In the Bronica line, the 180 mm can focus closer than the 150, but I think the 150 is popular for portrait work. Compared with run of the mill 35mm lenses, non-macro MF lenses don't focus in very close, maybe a meter is about it, more like 1.5 with the 150.

    That said, the Bronica sells at fairly attractive prices, but is something of an orphan these days as far as service, as they are no longer made. There are currently some places that repair them, but it's anybody's guess how much longer. I like mine!
     
  18. ParkerSmithPhoto

    ParkerSmithPhoto Subscriber

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    Those are very nicely done, Will. It's amazing what that lens can do. The Canon 50mm is worthless at 1.4 or 1.8 - just no sharpness at the point of focus.

    I would recommend the Mamiya RZ 180mm for a different look, with more compression and less "looming." Portraiture can be done with practically any lens if you use your imagination.
     
  19. ParkerSmithPhoto

    ParkerSmithPhoto Subscriber

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    And that's a great lens if you want to split the difference, and still get a bit of that "roundness" in your portraits.
     
  20. Richard S. (rich815)

    Richard S. (rich815) Subscriber

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    Tele-Rolleiflex with and without Rolleinars. Love mine.

    Google for the work Sanders McNew does with this camera. Nice stuff.
     
  21. Roger Cole

    Roger Cole Subscriber

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    They are very nice. It's amazing how much narrower the DOF looks on your 1.9 versus my 2.8. I want to get a 1.9 eventually but had it in mind more for very low light than portraiture. For that I want something loner. I now have the 150mm for my 645 but haven't seen results from it yet.

    Here's my wife with the 80mm 2.8N wide open. It works ok, but I prefer the perspective of a longer lens from farther out for portraiture. She loves this one but I think it makes her nose look bigger than it really is. :wink:

    [​IMG]
    Alicia_TroyAL1a by Roger Cole, on Flickr
     
  22. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    The Mamiya 645 210 f/4 is my favourite in 6x4.5. It doesn't crop particularly tightly (about 1/10 life-size or 406 mm by 547 mm), but the working distance is really comfortable.

    Alternately, the Mamiya 645 110mm f/2.8 allows a slightly tighter crop and a shorter working distance.

    The closest, non-macro Mamiya 645 short telephoto? - The relatively rare Soft Focus 145mm f/4 - 1/13 life-size and 326 mm by 440 mm.

    On the 6 x7 side, I like my RB67 140mm macro, but it might be too sharp for some portraits.
     
  23. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member

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    She has a very nice nose.
     
  24. Maris

    Maris Member

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    I reckon the ultimate roll film camera for portraits is either the Mamiya RZ67 or RB67. Both camera have a rotating back which can be turned to "portrait" orientation without turning the camera. The bellows focussing system means all lenses (ok, not the huge telephotos) focus close enough for a full face portrait. The on-film format is 6x7 which delivers visibly better quality than the 6x4.5 format

    The Hasselblad always prompted a twing of resentment. I paid for a 6x6 camera, carried it, shot with it, but ended up with 6x4.5 pictures after cropping to portrait format. And the 150mm lens, one of the finest ever made, would not focus close enough for a face portrait without the nuisance of an extension tube. To finish the rant, in an ideal world Victor Hasselblad should have produced the Hasselblad RZ 67 or RB 67 instead of leaving it for Mamiya to get right!
     
  25. fastw

    fastw Member

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    Great series Wharris. Did you shoot portrait or cropped later? How is to shoot portrait?
     
  26. fastw

    fastw Member

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    Wonderful forum Guys, happy to have found it.