This is a short series I’m going to run here on the blog featuring photos from my most recently developed roll of medium format 120 film taken with my Yashica A twin reflex lens camera. I’m grouping photos together by subject.
Between the last post and this one is one photo that didn’t turn out. I’d taken a photo in the woods during my Nude in Nature photo shoot that, unfortunately, was severely underexposed. For a year the camera sat untouched. I wasn’t sure what I wanted to shoot. There isn’t as big a street photography scene here as there is in NYC. Because I had ISO 160 film in the camera, I couldn’t use it for indoor shots. So what to do? Well, I started talking photography with one of Katie’s aunts and so I decided to bring the Yashica to Dan and Katie’s Engagement Brunch. And, who better to take a photo of than my grandfather. He’d probably been photographed with 120 film when he was young. It’s not a technically great photo what with the leaf shadows. But I like it. Still, this is what shooting film helps you remember – you need to look at all the detail before you shoot. You don’t get a redo by the time you have the film developed.
These lions, at the future location of Dan and Katie’s wedding were meant to be photographed with film. Something about them just screams it. I think they would have looked extra nice with a good, contrast-y black and white film. But, alas, I did not have that in the camera.
I’m not going to give away what’s special about this location in case it’s a surprise. But I did think it would be a special photo to take a year before Dan and Katie got married. Because my Yashica doesn’t have a built-in meter (for some reason I can’t understand, even modern medium format cameras often lack features compared to their contemporaries. Maybe they think – you have billions of megapixels, what do you care?) I tend to go by the Sunny 16 rule. If it’s sunny, put the camera at f/16 and then set your shutter speed to 1/ISO speed. That’s supposed to be a great approximation for exposure. And it overall works very well. But Dan and Katie are in shadow. It’s not horrible, but it’s why I’m strongly considering future future forays into film photography with a 35mm camera – particularly a Canon so I can use all the same lenses as my digital camera.
So that’s it, that’s my latest roll on the Yashica. As I said, I really enjoy the look of film. Sure, it could be replicated with filters, but I like it just being that way already. The one thing I really like about 120 film is the square aspect ratio. There’s something neat about it and I think that’s why for so long, Instagram was all about the square photo. I may shoot some digital photos in the future with a square crop in mind. It’ll be a while until I shoot film again. I don’t have any particular photo shoots in mind where I’d use my medium format cameras. If I can pick up a 35mm for cheap I’ll probably shoot some b&w rolls. I don’t think I can wrangle too many cameras to Dan’s wedding with 3 kids, but if I can, maybe I’ll try shooting some black and white there. A lot of people do seem to like this photo from Ho and Lauren’s wedding:
Whenever I do, I’ll be sure to make another blog series.