I have almost the same stuff as roqueish now (got the Yashica this weekend). If I did not have a good 35 mm with good lenses I would be lost. Shooting from a boat makes it a bit of a problem for MF. Cheap camera 35mm camera with cheap lenses would be worse than useless. It has been my experience that the smaller the format, the higher the quality required.
Now, having said that, I am returning to MF to get the proper values of detail and lattitude. As well, I like darkroom work in both B/W and colour. Something that has always been more fun with MF stuff. I have read a number of comments here regarding how surprised MF and LF folk are with the results compared to 35mm. It stands to reason that the bigger the negative the better the result.
Want a surprise? The average digital camera has a pickup window less than 1/4 inch. Now that is definately SF. It is much smaller than the old 8mm camera image, and we all know the quality we got there.
So, conclusion... Action and awkward situations I will use Nikon. For quality and composition I will rely on the old Yashica till I can afford a Hasselblad.
I was going to try pornography, but could not find any used pornographs
I use 35mm primarily, too. I am quite happy with it though MF would be somewhat better. But I do not have the money for a MF camera. I have tried a Rolleiflex which gave me ok result, but compared to 35mm it wasn't anything better. So if I am to enter MF I would go for a Hassy, Mamiya RB/RZ or Bronica.
I like the result I get with 35mm enlarged to 12x16, so I see no reason to change right now.
35mm is certainly for serious stuff, too!
Great! I had a good laugh at this.
Originally Posted by Loose Gravel
I'm also one of those 35mm-wankers. I hope to got MF once but the budget doesn't allow it at this time.
But this thread was about BW quality and formats so I can't compare yet but from what I read here, I must definitely make the move.
[homervoice]must sell those options soon[/homervoice]
Funny, I was just writing about this myself.
Contax G 4-ever, it seems. Just shot a bunch of Tri-X @ 3200 in it and was delighted with the results!
I always carry a banana in the bag when I shoot digital.
Originally Posted by Loose Gravel
[COLOR=SlateGray]"You can't depend on your eyes if your imagination is out of focus." -Mark Twain[/COLOR]
Rio Rancho, NM
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I got into MF about 8 monthes ago, and still use my nikon FM as much (possibly more), the freedom of shooting handheld with fast lenses is great. I often use 35mm on it's own at a new location (for landscape) so I can shoot quickly and a lot of film and not get bogged down and let my creativity flow a bit more. This means I've covered more shots and angles than I ever could with my RB67 on a tripod. I evaluate the 35mm shots, see what worked and what didn't and return shooting only MF. Maybe as I improve I won't need to do this as much.
Another thing I've found 35mm useful for is portraits since I'm not great at portraits and have very little experiance in that area. A few times I've been shooting with my RB and the subject has been inexperianced and is a little nervous, I've got out my nikon with portrait lens and shot a lot of film quite quickly moving around so the subject has little time to adjust their expression to a 'forced' one and the shots are far more natural since they don't have time to react. Also there are far more shots to choose from so the chances of getting a good one are much higher. There is no way I could do with with the RB. Unfortunatly often a portrait shot in 35mm handheld esp with fast film doesn't enlarge very far!
I'm always gutted if a 35mm shot turns out really good because I always think how much better it could have been in 6x7...
For street style shooting 35mm is in it's element. Horses for courses.
Ever since I bought my Pentax 645 and Speed Graphic, it's tough to pick up the 35mm kit..
"I'm always gutted if a 35mm shot turns out really good because I always think how much better it could have been in 6x7"
I feel the same way...
A year ago I bought the Canon Rebel, had some fun, realized that at 8x10 it produced better technical quality than any 35mm film I have ever used because it has no grain at ASA 100 or 200 and provides all the resolution I can see in that size enlargement. But when I decided to make a real effort to take more pictures in 2005 I chose to go back to my Contax rangefinder and film. Why? After years of owning all sorts of cameras, Canon SLRs now gone, Nikon manual focus still owned, a Yashicamat now sold (foolish me) and a Graflex now sold, not to mention my Minolta SRT202 that served me for almost 20 years, and now an Olympus digicam and the Rebel, I realized the Contax was the most perfect camera for me. It has the automation I want - auto focus and exposure, with exactly the adjustments I want. I can easily tweak exposure in 1/3 stop increments, can easily set ASA as I see fit, and it is small and light and elegant in appearance and use. None of the menus that I could never remember on my old Elan and on my Rebel. Unlike an SLR I may not see exactly what's going on the film, but its plenty close enough. I don't do macros or telephoto shots, and if I need to I have other cameras for it. And, maybe best of all, it has unbelievably sharp optics and when loaded HP5+ it is ready for practically any lighting situation handheld. And that may be the biggest thing for me. I always have found the tripod to be the biggest fun-sucker in all of photography. Still own one and still use it when I have to, but hardly ever have to with this system. Most of my prints are small, 5x7 or 6x9, and at these sizes, especially 5x7, the quality is superb, even with pushed HP5. Grainless? No. Sharp and with wonderful tonality? Yes, especially in DDX (which I can't find right now - going to try Paterson FX50 which sounds like it may produce similar results).
Does if offer the technical quality of medium and large format? Of course not. But I find I use it, and that is the key. It is the funnest, most intuitive camera system I have found (for me) and that keeps me shooting. No one looks scared when I point it at them because it and its lenses are tiny compared to SLRs with zooms and medium format cameras. I shoot people, landscapes, still lifes - any thing and everything. I'm having fun. Got a sink installed in my utility room so I can now use it as a darkroom, and find I'm getting way more satisfaction from working in it than I ever got in front of the computer. So here's my vote for 35mm - hopefully it will be around for a long time to come.
My first camera was a Nikon FE-2, and it's the only 35mm I have left at this point. I have too much great glass with it to get rid of it, but I find myself leaving it behind all of the time. My shooting these days is pretty evenly split between 6x7, 4x5, and 8x10. I'd like to try out a 645 RF to see how it compares to the FE-2 for ease of handling; if it worked out well enough I might retire the FE-2 forever.
I don't think I'll ever be able to actually sell the Nikon. It's been with me from the start, and I have an (unreasonable) emotional attachment to it. Having taken it more places in the world than I care to remember, it's just become part of my life. I still pick it up and play with it a bit, but I'll bet it's been a year since I put any film through it.
Who knows...maybe this thread will get me in the mood to pull a roll of something out of the freezer just for old-times sake.
Film is cheap. Opportunities are priceless.
I like MF, and I'm starting to play with 4x5 and am liking that, too. But my trusty Olympus OM-1n and OM-2n are still the main workhorses for me that they've been for over 20 years now. Maybe I'm just getting crusty and set in my ways, or living in my own reality, but I like 35mm. For 8x10 and sometimes 11x14 (if it's a particularly good neg) it does just fine for me. But then I don't necessarily view grain as an evil thing to be avoided at all cost. Don't get me wrong, I really like other formats too, I just seem to shoot a lot more 35mm. I can't see it going away any time soon.