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5 Frames With… Kodak Ektar 100 (EI 100 / 120 format / Mamiya 7) – by Jacob Firsel5 Frames With… Kodak Ektar 100 (EI 100 / 120 format / Mamiya 7) – by Jacob Firsel

5 Frames With… Kodak Ektar 100 (EI 100 / 120 format / Mamiya 7) – by Jacob Firsel

It is said that landscapes should be shot with, at the very least, a medium-film camera. So much has been put out there about the Mamiya 7 system and the Mamiya glass, that I decided to purchase an almost new camera and 80mm lens a few years ago. Adding the outstanding 43mm for landscapes seemed to justify the expense (the price of this kit has now increased by about 160% since my purchase a few years ago).

The Dead Sea is a photog’s dream come true. However, most of the year the light is harsh for most of the day. One has to get in this remote area early or very late in the day to capture that elusive soft light. There is no winter here, only a short rainy season. That means booking a hotel near the beach, hitting the right weather conditions with the right equipment.

I chose Kodak Ektar 100 for its color rendition. I wanted a slow film that would take in all the landscape, clouds, and especially, the silky smoothness of the Dead Sea water. The problem was I needed a lot of luck.

In short, I got lucky.

I booked a hotel room in Israel on the shore of the Dead Sea in December and was lucky enough to shoot early on a very overcast morning (it rains there about 10 days a year on average).

Using my tripod, the Mamiya and that legendary 43mm lens, I got to work. Shooting only two rolls of film, I think I came close to what I wanted.

I will come again, with the same camera and lens next year, in the hope that the fickle weather will come to my aid again.

~ Jacob Firsel



Get involved: submit your 5 Frames With

Getting your 5 frames featured couldn't be simpler: all you need to do is send over 5 frames shot on a single roll of film using the same lens and camera combination. Large format shooter, not a problem! As long as the shots all came from the same film stock, camera and lens, you're good to go.

You can submit your article using this form.

Finally, don't forget that this series is being produced in conjunction with Hamish Gill's excellent Head on over to read the other half of these stories.



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About The Author

Jacob Firsel

I am a tour guide and writer living in Israel. I got back into photography when doing the photos for my book. I bought a Pentax Spotmatic and some film about six years ago because it was my first serious camera I used in 1971. Now I have more than 20 film cameras. Serious G.A.S., I guess. 


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  1. These are beautiful! I have just entered film photography, and am loving the process of slowing down to learn vs the dslr route. I have 1 roll of Ektar100 in 35mm I’m waiting to get from the lab. I hope to see more from The Dead Sea next year, or sooner!

    • Jacob Firsel

      Thank you, Jay. Will get there next year and will post them on my web site:


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