Here you will find regular updates on what gear I use and how I use it. I like to explore all kinds of sides to photography and will experiment regularly with modified gear to get the results i like.


Entries in 35mm (5)


Vivitar IC 101 PANORAMA

Next week I will be traveling to Maui for 5 days bringing ONLY my trusted Vivitar IC 100 panorama and 4 rolls of Kodak TX 400 film. I think that is about as light as it goes in terms of camera gear. I will post a full story once I'm back on the mainland again.


Living with GAS...

Most of us film photography enthusiasts have to cope with GAS (Gear Acquisition Syndrome). The symptoms are many but here are a few indications that you might have a problem..

1. You always have something being shipped to you from eBay.
2. Your inbox is filling up with eBay notifications saying “Don’t missout!” or “This auction is about to end...”.
3. Your camera collection looks like a used car sales lot from the mid 80’s.
4. Your spouse is complaining that your collection of Kodak Ektachrome film is taking up valuable space in the fridge. OR, your film freezer is taking up valuable space in the garage...

But how can you not keep buying these amazing cameras when they are practically giving them away these days?

Keep film alive!



The fabulous 50

If you asked 10 photographers what their favorite lens was I bet that 9 would answer a fast 50mm fixed focal length lens. So why is the fabulous 50 so popular with most photographers? Well, its generally small, lightweight and cheap. Most major manufactures (read: Canon and Nikon) also carry several models from really cheap to ridiculously expensive making it easy to find a lens that fit your budget. A 50mm lens on a full frame body like the Canon 5D or any 35mm camera also gives you a natural perspective that is easy to use when you are on the move, personally I find the 50 to be my go-to lens in most situations. I almost always keep it on my camera and if I take it off it will easily fit in my pocket.  Since it is fast (f/1.2 or 1.4) I can use it in low light situations where a flash would be prohibited or useless like museums or churches etc. The high aperture also let you take photos with a short depth of field creating that nice blur in the background (and foreground) making it great for portraits or closeup shots of details.  But isn't a fixed focal length lens a problem if you need to get close to your subject or change the composition? Not really, you can always use your feet and actually walk closer or move around your subject. I also find that the fixed focal length forces me to be more creative in finding the right composition. During my most recent trip to Europe I actually made a point of shooting exclusively with a 50mm lens. I used both my Canon 50mm f/1.4 and my Mamiya 50mm f/1.2 with great results. I created a separate gallery that I will keep on this site for a short time only to show some of my work from the trip and how shooting exclusively with one lens can turn out different results. You can find the gallery here  or from my home page.


Please enjoy!



Digging for gold...

In my last post I mentioned ebay as a great way to find old film photography equipment and camera gear so this time I wanted to share a nugget of gold I dug up a while back. Please meet the Mamiya ZE Quartz Timed Automatic Exposure Camera, the coolest camera money can buy... ( at least in 1980...).

Sporting a quartz-controlled focal-plane metal shutter and a center-weighted photo diode the Mamiya Z series was the last of the 35mm cameras produced by Mamiya. But even as this format was going away Mamiya showed innovation by introducing an electronic coupling system to let the lens communicate with the camera body. This was a risky move since it would render lots of older glass (lenses) useless. Following a bankruptcy in the mid 80’s by the only distributor of Mamiya the 35mm format cameras ended production. This did not mean the end of Mamiya but since the late 80’s Mamiya only distribute high-end medium format cameras. So how much did this baby set me back you ask? A whooping $55.00 including two lenses, a 50mm f1.7 and a 75-150mm f3.8. And all of this in MINT condition, how could you go wrong?!?

 one night in Reno... (Mamiya ZE, Kodak T-Max 400)

Here are some super tips on Mamiya cameras and history. (Awesome site by Ron Herron)




How to modify a 35mm camera...

In this post I will show how I modified the camera I use to take the 35mm panoramic pictures I have in my gallery section of this website.

For my 35mm panoramic shots i use a modified Black Slim Devil by SuperHeadz. This is a great little plastic camera with a 22mm lens.

 To get the panoramic look i make two small strips of aluminum (from a regular soda can) cut to app. 43mm x 5mm. This can be tricky since the aluminum is "flimsy"and dents easily.

I use regular flat black enamel paint (can be found at any hobby store) to pain the strips black before I glue them to the camera body.

Once the paint is dry I put a small amount of super glue to fix the strips of aluminum in the camera as shown in the picture.

I end by covering any glue or exposed aluminum with the black paint.

You want to ensure that the strips of metal don't have any sharp edges since this can scratch the film and ruin your day.

You can find this camera at several places on the internet however I bought mine at for about $30.00. This is a great website for plastic "toy" cameras, accessories and film.

Time to go outside and shoot!