ARAX-CM & Ilford XP2 Super

6×6 Medium Format Film Photography

Here are a few samples using my Russian Hasselblad clone, the Soviet Kiev 88 or Hasselbladski. My particular model is an overhauled and rebadged ‘ARAX’ camera. Kiev 88s are 6×6 medium format film cameras that take 120 film.

My ARAX –
The new camera.. SOOC
My latest student.. Elka!
Medium Format Film
Me in action in Poland with model Agnieszka –
ARAX in action, Poland

You get 10 photos per roll of 120 film so it makes you think about each shot before taking. The camera has no batteries/ electrics so it is back to basics ‘proper’ photography – a light box, a lens and a film back. By using a light meter the required cameras settings can then be dialed in (lens aperture and shutter speed) to obtain the necessary exposure (while taking the film speed into account). I had C41 colour film and this C41 black and white film lab developed. I then scan the film negative using an Epson v600 scanner before cleaning up the image in PP.

Samples using the ARAX-CM + Ilford XP2 Super
ARAX-CM (Kiev 88) 6x6 Film
ARAX-CM (Kiev 88)
Sandra with ARAX
Sandra with ARAX, Poland
Elka with ARAX

Other ARAX-CM samples with different film types
Agnieszka with ARAX
Agnieszka
ARAX in Poland
My Bro
Bitter Cold Morning, Poland
Agnieszka, Poland
Agnieszka with ARAX
Street shooting, India
Andra with ARAX-CM
ILoveFilm.com

ARAX-CM non-portrait photos
Arax-Sonnar Landscape
Old John, Bradgate Park, Leicestershire
Film Photography
ARAX Landscape
NT Packwood House Estate
India Street Food (1)

And lastly.. perhaps my favourite photo I have ever taken – Yulya, Ukriane on Kodak T-Max

Fashion on FILM

I find film photography very rewarding despite owning some nice digital cameras.

MatthewOsbornePhotography.co.uk

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Author: matthewosbornephotography

Coventry, UK studio based Model and Wedding Photographer offering both Medium Format Film and Digital Images. 1-2-1 Photography and Lighting Tuition also available.

15 thoughts on “ARAX-CM & Ilford XP2 Super”

    1. Thanks Frank. Yes a great little camera ..and I love 6×6 format. (I literally just now bought a 6×6 film back for my Mamiya RZ so film is not dead yet). I prefer the format and size of the ARAX but the viewfinder of the big RZ is to die for so I bought 2 new format film backs for it to give it a new lease of life. 6×6 and 645 (for weddings)(16 photos instead of 8 on a roll!). I realise I will not get the full use from the 6×7 sensor with cropped backs but I still have the 6×7 backs to use too, and the RZ can then do the work of 3 of my film cameras using each format.

      Coming soon! 🙂

  1. Amazing photos, especially the portraits! I have the same Arax too and a small collections of lenses that get far too little use. Your photos inspire me to take it out more often. 🙂

  2. Great images! I am thinking about buying an Arax as well… Would you recommend it? I would mainly use it with natural light, no studio, basically… Please let me know what you make of it. Have you used it with an Arax lens? Do you think its worth buying a Carl Zeiss one? Thank you! Victor

    1. Hi Victor, yes I have 2. My most used film camera by a big margin.. and vs the likes of Contax 645, Mamiya RZ and Leica M2 so some serious bits of kit. I love the size and shot 99% with available light. Yes I have the ARAX 80/2.8. Great lens but mostlu used Mir lenses. If you potentially want to buy cameras or lenses let me know and I can probably help. Cheers Matt

  3. Amazing pictures! And I mean it.
    I was wondering whether it’s even worth trying those old film cameras and after searching the web for medium format films I came across this blog and it put a spell on me. Almost immediately I bought Pentacon Six TL which needed CLA and after receiving it back I put my DSLR on a shelf.
    Thank you! I am utterly happy with my new toy. It’s a pleasure to shoot and develop film at home.
    Just one question: would you be so kind to tell if you were using something to make the light so uniform in those portraits with no shadows on faces? Was it a reflector solely or maybe some lights and a reflector or a softbox? Our cameras have a fixed flash sync speed- 1/30s, so using a flash isn’t an option.
    Eagerly waiting for your reply and many thanks in advance.
    Regards,
    Vitalis

    1. HI Vitalis,

      It is my pleasure!! I am glad you can have the same film with film cameras as me! I wish I made more time to do this!

      I’m not 100% sure which photos you are looking at but using the ARAX and Pentacon Six I was using daylight 99% of photo. If you want even light turn model to diffused light (such as north facing window or under a tree). I didn’t even use a reflector I do not think!

      I will have some new film photos coming soon using 35mm Leica M2 and Mamiya RZ67.. I have 4 rolls of film to develop!! 🙂

      Hope that helps you a little
      Matt

      1. Howdy Matthew,

        The pleasure is all mine. I am shooting Kodak Tri-X 400 now, although I liked Ilford Xp2 Super. It’s just that I can develop Kodak on my own and I was itchy to try that. Medium format is my first film experience and I’m having a great time with it. Though I’m far from what you have achieved. 🙂

        I have time and few ideas although lack of confidence and experience in conjunction with very tight budget is driving me crazy. I would love to shoot some model pictures but I imagine pretty girls don’t do that for free and I’m not intended to hire them. 😦 Since I’m not that confident to ask somebody on the street to do little posing for me I shoot those streets and buildings instead…

        I am looking at those which were taken with ARAX indoors and outdoors (on this page). And I always find myself coming back again. They are something. Light is amazing, it really looks so diffused, uniform and soft. Thank you very much for those advises.

        Looking forward to seeing those from RZ67. Good look with development. 😉 I have developed only 2 rolls yet but managed to screw up the second one. Many exposures were lost on that film because I poured a fixer instead of a developer first but quickly realized that. I’ve learnt a lesson that day: don’t let anything/anybody to distract you during that process (was talking to someone then).

        Best regards,
        Vitalis from Lithuania 🙂

      2. Thanks Vitalis. Yes I have had to learn the hard way for a few rolls too. It’s tough but you will not make the same mistae twice!

        For models practise with a digital camera then swap over to film once happy.

        Thanks for the kind words. Enjoy!

        Matt

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