Medium Format and TLRs

Shot with a Yashica-Mat 124G Fri 21.01.2011

Recently, I bought a Yashica-Mat 124G of eBay, mostly because I was intrigued by both the Twin Lens Reflex camera system and the film format.

Somehow, I’ve got the feeling that TLRs make for better photographs in certain situations than SLRs. The parallax error and the mirrored viewfinder makes for interesting compositions that the photographer don’t have 100% control over, no matter what kind of experience. This, in my opinion makes TLRs especially well suited for street portraits and other medium range photography, where the depth of the image is around 10-20 meters.
The fact that people aren’t used to people taking photographs looking down at a small black box instead of pointing a big zoom lens at them only adds to the pros when it comes to street portraits.

The film format then. First of all, the negatives are big, especially for a guy like me that has never shot anything but 35mm. I mean, 60mm x 60mm of real estate to play around with. Other things I’ve noticed is that the negatives are a whole lot easier to scan, since dust and grain doesn’t get as enlarged as with 35mm, and they allow for insane amounts of pixels, 6400dpi scans yields about 190 megapixels. Printed at 300dpi, that’s about 1,2 meters square. And finally, I find the 120 rolls a lot more pleasant than 35mm cartridges, the 120 rolls are somehow a bit more “organic” or something. Don’t ask me for a better description, suffice to say that I like stuff for the strangest of reasons

Categories: Photography

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