Thursday, January 26, 2017

Olympus Infinity Jr

Next up is a boxy little 35mm point & shoot, an Olympus Infinity Jr. This is another Goodwill find.  Spent only $1.99. When I purchased the camera there was no battery so I couldn’t tell if it worked.  However, I gave it my standard “found camera” going over. It looked clean so I bought it.

The camera carries a 35mm f/3.5 lens.  Not very fast, but the lens size makes if perfect as a street photography film camera.  The camera is 4 ½” long x 2 ½” tall x 2” wide.  A bit too wide for a pocket, but cool for a bag. The camera takes a standard 123A battery.

The camera is a standard point & shoot.  DX coding. Almost all features are automatic.  Autofocus, auto-flash, auto-film advance, and auto-film rewind.  The only feature that can be adjusted is the flash control.  You can set it to “fill-in”, “off”, & “auto”.  There is an obvious self-timer button on the top of the camera.  I measured it at 12 seconds.  There is a simple red light that is on when the self-timer is set and flashed with about 2 seconds to go.  There is a good slide cover over the lens with a rubberized grip.  The grip allows you to slide the cover open and close easily.

The has a boxy sleek look and your finger falls easily on the shutter release button.  The camera is a bit awkward feeling to hold, but that’s probably just me.  Someone with big hands might have a problem.

I loaded the camera with a roll of Fujicolor Superia X-TRA 400.  A standard color film.  I used it during a recent model shoot.  About ½ of the time the flash went off.  Lots of red eye with the flash.  Quality was all over the map but that was because I used the camera is several different lighting situations. 

Bottomline, it’s a good little camera.  Nothing special, but a reasonable film point & shoot if you can pick one up for a few dollars.  I wouldn’t go out of my way to buy one.

A few shots

Model Anastasiya - Industrial lighting - flash didn't go off

Model Anastasiya - Industrial lighting / partial shadow - flash went off

Model Anastasiya - In Studio with fluorescent lights - flash didn't go off

Friday, January 20, 2017

Polaroid One - Goodwill Find

I visit Goodwill monthly to look for used film cameras.  Sometimes I'm successful, most times not. Today i found this cool Polaroid One.  For as much as I use Polaroids, I have never owned one of these, so I was excited.  Guess what, it appears to work.  Fun find that I'll use this weekend.

Monday, January 16, 2017

Flea Market Finds - Some You Win, Some You Lose

Yesterday, I went to a flea market with the plan to look for film cameras!  I've done this a few times, and the results are always hit & miss.  Yesterday was no different.  As always, if you go into your flea market adventure looking for film cameras you need to always:

  • Don't expect the seller knows anything about the camera you might find
  • Expect that some of the equipment won't work
  • Don't always expect to find out you have a dude until after you get home and give it a good looking over,
  • Don't overpay
  • Don't be afraid to walk away

I always use the mental measure, "how much would this cost me if I bought it on eBay?".  If I can get it cheaper online, I'll ALWAYS pass, unless the example sitting in-front of me at the flea market is in great shape.

This is what I found from 2 sellers yesterday including the price paid.  
  • Leica AF-C1 - $10
  • Polaroid OneStep - $1
  • Minolta XG-A - $15
  • Miranda Sensoret - $1
  • Olympus XA2 - $1

I gave them all a quick going over before I flopped down my $$$.  The Miranda & Olympus were in a bit of rough shape, but I took a flier since they were only $1 each.  The Leica didn't fire at the booth, but I figured that was a battery thing.  The Polaroid looked clean (I have lots of experience buying these), and the Minolta looked clean but the film advance was stuck.

After getting home and giving them a good going over, the Polaroid & Leica appear to be good to go. The Leica fired up easily with a new battery, and the Polaroid worked with a test cartridge.  The Olympus appears to be a goner even if I give it a good cleaning.  But again, only $1.  The Miranda's shutter seems to be stuck, but I'm going to self CLA it to see if I can get it moving.  The Minolta's film advance lever if frozen, so I'm going to try to fix it myself.  If I fail on the Minolta, no major dramas because the lens is in good shape and I can use it on other cameras.

So for $28 I got 2 cameras I can use.  I particularly like the Leica and would have easily paid $25 for it alone.  I might be able to salvage the Miranda, but I'm not going to put tons of effort into it.

Bottomline, I got to hang out with the Mrs and go on this film camera treasure hunt.  A fun couple of hours.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Lomography pop9

It's 100% 35mm toy camera time.  Time to talk about this 9-eye'd brick of gold!  Yes, I'm talking about the Lomography pop9.  Want high quality, super sharp photos?  What lots of options? Want to be taken seriously when others see you shooting?  Well, you're not going to get it with the pop9.  The pop9 is just for fun.  You know, a toy camera.

What makes the pop9 unique is that it takes 9 small square photos on each frame.  It simply takes the image in your viewfinder and creates 9 small copies at once.  That's it.  

The pop9 is all manual.  The only feature is a manual flash that runs off a single AA battery.  There's a on / off switch on the top.  If you think you need the flash, turn it on.  It's not automatic.  The film rewind gear is on the bottom left of the camera (which seems backwards).  The film rewind knob is also on the bottom, on the bottom right.

Looking at the camera and when you open the back of the camera and you'll see how it works.  There are 9 separate lenses.  When you push the shutter release all 9 lenses fire.  When you look through the back you can see all 9 open if holding the camera up to a light.

I bought my Lomography pop9 last time I was in NYC in their NYC store.  I've wanted one for awhile, so I picked one up.  I loaded a roll of Fujicolor Superia 35mm film, and found the flash didn't work.  That somewhat limited what I shot because it was getting dark when I first used it.  I finished up the roll when I got home on a fairly bright day, and those were the only images that worked.

Bottomline, this is a pure fun camera.  Not practical for anything other than goofing around or possibly for a creative project.  But, you know what, I enjoyed it.  I'll probably see if I can get the flash to work and take it to the studio with me during a fashion shoot.  Might get some cool shots.  In the meantime, here a few shots from the first roll.

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Pentax PC35AF

I'm starting my 52in52 2017 project.  One film camera per week.  Possibly a cheapo point & shoots I pick up at Goodwill or a flea market or maybe an expensive camera purchased online.  I have MANY such cameras to select. Therefore the selection process will be a challenge in itself, but a good problem to have!

First up is a recently purchased Pentax PC35AF.  Shoots 35mm film.  The PC35AF feels very well built.  Not a cheap plastic toy camera, this thing is mostly metal.  It reminded me of my much loved Olympus MJU, although it's a bit bulkier and wider.

I bought the Pentax at Goodwill for a stupid cheap price of $2.99.  

What I like about the camera is it's cool looks.  I totally dig the red shutter release button and the small red switch that pops open the lens cover.  There is no manual way to open the lens cover so if you break off the red cover release switch you're screwed.  

The camera has a street photography perfect f2/8 35mm lens.  The shutter is super quiet.  The camera has an autofocus which is cool.  ISO range is only 25-400, so no low light for you.  You do have a pop up flash released using a red switch on the bottom.  Flash is automatic.  Film is advanced using a thumb wheel on the top back of the camera.  Mine is a bit tight, but smooth. A 10-second self timer on the shutter release.  I wasn't able to determine if you can take double exposures, but I don't think so.

Here's the top, bottom & back

I shot a roll of of Ilford XP2 400.  Easy to use.  Flash was responsive.  Overall a fun camera to start the year.  I'll definitely be using it again.

Sunday, January 1, 2017


I've enjoyed shooting film the past couple of years after years of digital only.  Adding to the enjoyment is I've started developing and scanning my film as well.  This provides more control over my workflow and cuts the cost.

Well, in 2017 I've decided to do a personal film photography project.  I'm regularly playing with a film camera so I thought I would do a 52 in 52 project.  I'm going to shoot a different film camera each week in 2017.  

I have well over 100 different point & shoot and SLR film cameras so I have LOTS to work with.  I'll combine the project with my street photography, studio work and general snapshots.  The goal is to try different film types as well.  This gives me an opportunity to try different cameras and then write about them. 

Let's see if I can do this consistently.  Should be fun.  By the way, here is what I have to select from.