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Medium format film camera showdown: Contax 645 vs Pentax 645NII

I love medium format cameras but sometimes I feel a bit lazy: I just want to shoot a camera that is quick and convenient to use. That is when I reach for my trusty Pentax 645NII. It is a medium format film camera, but at the smallest end of what’s officially medium format. The Pentax […]

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The death of the amateur photograph

The Bombastic Proposal: the marriage of digital photography with social media has fundamentally altered the nature of the photograph for most Americans — to such an extent that this combination of technologies has resulted in the metaphorical death of the amateur photograph. During the 20th century, photographs taken by amateurs had two primary purposes: documenting […]

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New “contact print” Instax film from Fuji plus another underpowered toy camera, the Instax Mini 40

If you’re looking for a cheap point-and-shoot upgrade from Fuji’s last cheap point-and-shoot Instax camera, the company will gladly cover you as of just a few hours ago with the brand new, two-button-two-setting Instax Mini 40 camera. Added to that, if you happen to be missing the darkroom in today’s purely digital photography age, you […]

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My new portrait project: “Inspired”, passionate artists and a 145-year-old Dallmeyer 3B 290mm f/3 Portrait Petzval lens

I have been looking for this historical artwork for some years – a useable Dallmeyer 3B Portrait Petzval 290mm f/3 lens made during the 70s — the1870s. Finally, I got it (with some help). The lens is at the heart of my project, “Inspired”, which will be published in a book — you can register […]

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Announcing the 2021 SilvergrainClassics Analog Photography Bootcamp

SIlvergrainClassics and the state of Rheinland-Palatinate are pleased to announce an agreement for a new training center for analog photographers and filmmakers. The former army facility, which has suffered from damage due to vandalism in recent years, is being upgraded through a cooperation between the Ministry of Culture and the Department of Defense. “Until the […]

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A year in the life of a backyard cameramonger during a global pandemic: Building fast, automated devices for scanning film and mounted slides – the Mongoose and the BoopBoop Trigger

In this article I am going to talk about the journey that led me to build the Mongoose automated negative carrier, and my newest device, the BoopBoop Trigger for digitizing mounted slides.  This won’t be so much a technical review or description as much as a meandering memoir for posterity about what I did with […]

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Maximum readiness, effective robustness: The Durst Sei Sei (Durst 66)

During the never-ending cycle of lockdowns here in the UK, I’ve set myself a little project wandering about on my permitted ‘one-exercise-a-day’ time, documenting my hometown of Stone in the West Midlands. My preferred film is ILFORD HP5 PLUS: absolutely bomb-proof. A friend regularly develops his in his coffee (Caffenol) and he gets printable negatives […]