Updated: Aug 12, 2019
I have often mentioned the state of this shoebox Mamiya, and all the trials and frustrations of making the most of what I have, but now I can finally show you. In my recent rant about the post editing involved in trying to make my 120 negatives mildly consumable, I had a number of people come forward with medium format cameras to sell, but one really got my attention by a certain Saint Wolanski: a dust collecting Bronica GS-1 for cheap. Honestly, if I could afford to spend 2k on a used Hassy, I could afford a new back, lens, prism finder, an additional lens, and a near mint additional body for my Mamiya get up. While there are aspects of the RB that I cherish, if not simply the bellows focusing, I would trade the camera and the romantic story for a consistently sharp and usable negative... and here we go:
quite possibly the last frame of my baby, and the first frame of this new machine. The first is the RB with a 90mm/3.8 NB, on a tripod that has basically been dedicated to this camera, antiquishly blurry and inconsistent exposure. The second is the Bronica with the Zenzanon 100mm/3.5, hand held. Both were shot on HP5 at 125/f11. If you can't see the night and day difference here then we have bigger problems, and this isn't some abandoned house we found out in the desert... this is actually the state of our back deck, which I needed to shoot anyway, and this comparison fit in pretty perfectly. This is the year of the game changing, and I am terrified. Thank you, Saint Wolanski, for this ante up! Be expecting a more personal thank you.