Old cameras, modern landscape

November 23, 2012  •  Leave a Comment

A few weeks ago I visited the Foto museum in Rotterdam and while I was there I picked up a leaflet for a club called Fotografica. This was advertising a market for old cameras which I then went to last weekend near Utrecht

Absolutely amazing, a large exhibition hall filled with cameras and equipment covering about the whole history of photography from old wooden large format cameras, folding cameras, film SLRs right up to ( almost ) current models and recent lenses.

 





 

There were many dealers from Germany and shoppers seemingly from all over Europe. I was tempted by some of the large format cameras, many landscape and architectural photographers are still using this equipment but the prices were too high without more research and knowledge of what I was buying.

In the end I bought a smaller folding camera for a small amount of money. This is branded as coming from Eka Fotowerke but an Internet search reveals nothing about this name or model.

These cameras are very rudimentary and slow, you first focus your image onto a glass focusing screen at the back of the camera, then you slide out the back and slide in a sheet of film in a light protective holder. Once inside the camera you open the film slide and then take the photograph by manually opening and timing the shutter. Surprising that anything turns out at all.

I did not manage to get any film slides and as the make is not findable on the Internet I may not be able to progress with this camera. Looks like I may need more research and a visit to the next market to buy a different model.

I had my small but really great Sony NEX7 camera with me, the more i use this camera the more i get to like it. After the market we went to Utrecht for a look around, first stopping off in a cafe for some coffee. During the walk my wife asked me to photo a picture in the window of a gallery, i then realised i had left the Sony on the chair in the cafe. Luckily after 15 minutes rapid and slightly nervous walk back to the cafe we found the camera right where I had left it. Quite a compliment that the camera is so light that you don't notice that you are carrying it, but with the downside that you also don't notice when you are no longer carrying it !

During the week I went to a talk by a Dutch photographer Hans Wilschut.  Some good stories about where he had been to take some of these images, but also a different take on photographing cities, and the impact they have on people, and impact of the people in the cities.

You can see these on his website at www.hanswilschut.com/ but I particularly liked some of the buildings shots showing the people through the windows - who obviously did not know they where being photographed, and also his installation within the Rotterdam port building where the are set up to look like they are a continuation of the office corridor into areas of the port. Very clever use of depth and perspective
 

 

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