Monday, February 21, 2011

Mamiya M645 & Ilford FP4+

I have two of these workhorses, and I love them both. These are very dependable professional medium format cameras that have stood the test of time and continue to perform well. I have an 80mm, 210mm, and 30mm fisheye lenses for the two bodies to share. Both have the bright fresnel screens and are easy to compose with. I have two WLF's and one eye level finder, and several back inserts to complete the package.

Recently my children and I went out looking for some interesting scenes and I took these two with me. This one setup with the 80mm f2.8 lens, and the other setup with the 30mm fisheye.

The weather was forecast to be quite pleasant in the mid 50's with overcast skies. What we got was something all together different. It rained while we were driving, but the rain did eventually give way to heavy overcast skies without the rain. The temperature never reached 45 I am sure, and the wind was very strong. In other words we were cold most of the day, but we did manage to get in a couple nice photographs. Below are two that I liked the most.

The film I used for these photographs was Ilford's FP4+ 125. I typically rate this film at 100 speed and get very predictable results from it. My normal two go-to developers for this film are Rodinal and D-76/ID11 depending on what I am trying to get out of the scene. I lean more towards the tamed grain that the solvent type developers like D-76/ID11 give, but sometimes the tones from acutance type developers like Rodinal fit the scene best.

Recently I was reading about adding a small amount of Rodinal to the solvent type developer Xtol in an effort to gain a little from both worlds. I tried that with this roll of film and wasn't so impressed that I will try this much more.

I like the zonal representation of this second image the most, but I like the composition of the first photo the best. As with most of my work, I post it like I shot it, so I didn't bother messing with the first one to see if I could get the tones where I wanted them using a computer. Sometimes I enjoy a little imperfection; it keeps me paying attention for the next time.

Mamiya M645 Waist Level Finder
Ilford FP4+ @ 100 EI

300ml Xtol
6ml Rodinal
Water to make 600ml
9.75 minutes 20c

1 comment:

  1. Very nice blog, I like it a lot. It's me, e_romero from Flickr.

    I have a M645 too and what I like most is the sharp lenses, I have a 35mm wide, a 45mm, 80mm 2.8 and a 150mm.

    Have a nice day!