Leica M6 vs Hasselblad 501c!

Leica M6 vs Hasselblad 501C (+ vs Leica M8)

(..or 35mm film vs medium format film)

Matthew Osborne Photography / Mr Leica
March 2016

I did a shoot with Stacey recently in my home studio in Coventry UK.  I decided to shoot my Leica M6 35mm film camera up against the medium format 6×6 Hasselblad 501C film camera.  To give the Leica M6 rangefinder a fighting chance I loaded it with the super fine Ilford Pan F 50 film and attached the super sharp Leica Summicron 75mm f2 APO lens.  I did do a few wider shots with the Voigtlander Nokton Classic 35mm f1.2 ASPH ii lens which is also nice and sharp.  The Hasselblad was already loaded with Kodak Tri-X 400 but for some reason I thought it had Fomapan 100 film is so shot the roll of Tri-X 400@100 and developed accordingly  Both rolls of film were developed in Xtol developer.  Click any photo for more details.

Here is a sample of the film scans:

Hasselblad 501C + 120 Fomapan 100 Medium Format Film

Hasselblad vs Leica
Hasselblad 501C
Hasselblad 501C in the Studio
Hasselblad Portrait
6x6

Leica M6 + 35mm Ilford Pan F 50 Film

35mm Ilford Pan F 50 film
Leica M6 + Ilford Pan F 50
Leica Summicron 75mm f2 APO + Film
Ilford Pan F 50 Fashion
Leica M6 Fashion
Leica Elmar 50mm f2.8 + SOOKY-M
Ilford Pan F 50 Film Portrait
Leica M6 Portrait

I was also using my digital Leica M8 for the shoot and it still impresses me as to how film like the Leica CCD sensor appears.  Here are a few examples.

Leica M8 Digital Camera

Leica M8 Loveliness!
Leica M8 B&W

Leica vs Hasselblad – Results

I think the Leica M6 was at the top of it’s game and thanks to the choice of Ilford Pan F 50 film. I actually preferred the Leica M6 photos on the whole to that of the Hasselblad.  That is quite an achievement as the Hasselblad has done nothing but impress me since my purchase.  The real test will be using the Hasselblad 501C + Zeiss Makro-Planar 120mm f4 CF lens + 120 Ilford Pan F 50 film for sharp lens and super fine grain film. That said, it’s great to remind myself of how good the little 35mm Leica film cameras can be.

Big thanks to Stacey for putting up with my usual array of quirky cameras pointing at her! 🙂

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Harriett & Ashley

Harriett & Ashley – Stylised engagement session in Coventry using a 1950s Leica M2 film camera, a Fuji GS645 film camera and my digital Leica M9. Photo show the film wedding photography style I plan to offer for 2015. I use a range of 35mm film, medium format film and large format film cameras in addition to Leica digital.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/32681588@N03/14774898268

LeicaWeddingPhotographer

Vintage Engagement: Harriett & Ashley

http://www.MatthewOsbornePhotography.co.uk / www.MrLeica.com

Coventry Wedding Photographer – Location Shoot

Engagement Session, Coventry

As a Coventry wedding photographer that offers analogue film wedding photography and digital images, I like nothing bettter than engagement sessions. Here is another stylised engagement shoot in Coventry with models Harriett and Ashley. They are not a couple but work well together and it is then my job to then make it all look realistic.  All photos are 100% posed and directed by me yet they hopefully come across as natural.

For the e-session I used three cameras, two analogue film cameras, 1950s Leica M2 + 1980s Fuji GS645, and my digital Leica M9.  Colour photos are film and black and white ones are digital.  I love the look of film and I think the softer images and colours really suit wedding photography and engagements sessions.  The film photos below are in…

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Large Format 4×5 Pacemaker Speed Graphic

Large Format 4×5 Pacemaker Speed Graphic

Matthew Osborne Photography (Mr Leica)

After a few weeks of waiting and many hours of reading finally my first large format camera arrives!  It is a 1947 Pacemaker Speed Graphic 4×5 format film camera but with a few modifications.  The guy I bought it from in the US, Paul, specialised in refurbishing Speed Graphic cameras. More details below.

Purchase Decision

I knew large format photography was just a matter of time for me.  I have been tempted in the past but managed to resist the temptation until now.  As I am really into my film photography it seemed the natural progression to push me to learn something new and to challenge myself to master the art of large format photography.  When I was researching large format portrait photos that I liked on Flickr there seemed to be a general theme appearing.  Regardless of the camera body being used I kept seeing the words “Aero” and “Ektar” in the tags.

After some online research I found that an Aero Ektar was a 178mm f2.5 lens that created the most beautiful bokeh and out of focus areas.  An aperture of f2.5 is very bright for a large format lens (considering that for my 6×6/ 6×7 medium format cameras that I own the fastest lenses are f2.8 – Mamiya RZ67 / Rolleiflex SL66E etc).  When I then went to look to buy a large format camera body and an Aero Ektar lens it was like stepping into a mind field.  I had absolutely no clue what any of these cameras were, whether all lenses fit all cameras, whether these old camera worked, how to fit a lens to a lens board.. the list went on and on.

All the cameras I looked at had their standard f5.6 lenses included or no lens at all.  This was of no interest to me at this stage.  I then got lucky one day searching for the lens to find a modified Pacemaker Speed Graphic camera listed with a Aero Ektar lens attached!!  It came with a higher price tag but after many emails back and forth with Paul he persuaded me that it was worth it and most importantly I would have a working large format 4×5 camera straight out of the box.

Camera Specifics

Body

The camera I purchased was originally a 1947 Pacemaker Speed Graphic with a rear focal plane shutter and shutter speeds up to 1/1000.  It has a Kalart rangefinder mounted on the body but I will use the rear ground glass for critical focus.  This camera was the standard issue press camera in the US until the 1960s often shot at around f11-f16 using the rangefinder and with flash bulbs for illumination.

Lens

The lens is a World War II Kodak Eastman Aero Ektar 178mm f2.5 millitary aerial reconnaissance lens, hence the wide aperture.  It is a huge and heavy piece of glass but Paul has mounted it to a Speed Graphic lens board so that is not front heavy.  It is also modified to accept 77mm filter and has a custom made hood.  The filter threads will be great on a bright day when I want to use the lens wide open at f2.5 as I can use ND filters and also yellow filters for black and white portraits.

Film Back

My Speed Graphic is fitted with a bespoke 4×5 rotating Cambo film back so I can shoot in portrait and landscape orientation without rotating the actual camera.  This is perfect for me.

Film Formats

  • 4×5 Sheet Film

The camera came with 4×5 double sided film holders to accept single sheet 4×5 film.  4×5 film is more expensive than medium format film and very expensive to develop at a lab.  I pay £3.00 a roll to develop C41 colour film (120 and 35mm).  4×5 film costs £3.00 each to develop!  I have looked into this in great depth and found you can actually develop your own 4×5 film in a mod that fits into a 3 roll Paterson tank.  This cuts the cost dramically and helped my overall decision to buy a 4×5 camera.  I will develop by own 4×5 black and white film in Rodinal as I do for 35mm and 120 film. 4×5 film itself is also expensive, especially colour film such as Kodak Portra.  4×5 Fomapan appears to be the most affordable option so I will try that first.  I have used 120 Fomapan film and it was fine to use.

  • 6×7 Roll Film

A cheaper option is to buy a roll film back to fit a 4×5 camera.  It means you do not get the benefit of the 4×5 film format but it will allow me to practise using the large format camera before I then move onto 4×5 sheet film.  120 roll film is fast and easy to load, cheap to develop and less expensive to buy  (per photo).  My film format options were 6×6, 6×7 or 6×9.  I wanted as big as possible ideally (to make use of the large format camera) but settled for a 6×7 Horseman roll film back as I get 10 exposures per roll plus I don’t use the 6×9 format camera I own very often.

  • 4×5 Polaroid Film

Polaroid no longer make 4×5 film but you can still buy expired 4×5 Polaroid film on eBay, just at a cost.  The next option was Fuji FP-100C45 but again this also has been discontinued.  After more reading I found I can use regular Fuji FP100C in a different Polaroid film back and it will work on the Speed Graphic.  This is perfect for me as I have a stock of FP-100C gloss colour film in the fridge that I bought for my Mamiya RZ67 Pro II and better still I have the discontinued Fuji FP-3000B black and white instant film!!  It seemed a waste to use it on the Mamiya but to get a photo that fills the entire paper from the 4×5 camera is very exciting indeed.  I will practise with colour Fuji FP-100C that costs around £13 a pack (10 exposures) and once I am half decent I will start to use some of my black and white Polaorid film.

4x5 Speed Graphic + Kodak Aero Ektar Lens

I will do some detail photos of my modified Speed Graphic with Aero Ektar lens together with some sample images as soon as I get chance.  Interesting and exciting times ahead! 🙂

Non-Leica: DSLR Pop-Up Flash

Non-Leica: DSLR Pop-Up Flash –

Controlling the power of a pop-up flash manually and getting creative with it

Matthew Osborne Photography

1-2-1 Photography Workshop

On Sunday I was providing a photographer with 1-2-1 photography tuition from my Coventry studio.  The portrait photography workshop had a strong emphasis on lighting, using available light, on camera speedlights, off camera speedlights and also using the built in pop-up flash on the camera.  Not all photographers own a speedlight so many people are limited to the pop-up flash on the top of the camera (assuming their camera model has this feature.  My Leica M cameras do not have a built in flash however the Nikon D800 does).  The photographer I was teaching, Deji, did not have a speedlight so I wanted to show how to control the power of the camera pop-up flash manually.  When I teach I often describe a scenario to get students thinking in a practical sense as to how to solve the problem.

Scenario – Pop-up flash too bright

Local model Gina was modelling for me. The situation was that the pop-up flash was too bright on Gina’s face.  The camera settings were ISO 100 (lowest on the camera), shutter speed 200 and an aperture of f2.8 to obtain a shallow depth of field. We are using a prime lens and want to retain the composition so cannot step back from the subject.  We want the image straight from the camera so want to avoid cropping in post processing.  We only have this lens and we do not have a ND filter or polarising filter.

How do we reduce the pop-up flash power?

If you want the pop-up flash to be 1/3 power output then cover 2/3 of the pop up flash with you finger, half power, cover half of the flash and so on.  It sounds simple but it works.  I rarely use pop-up flash but if I was in the same situation with say my Nikon D800 freelancing for a wedding (where I am often asked to use the Nikon) and my speedlight batteries failed and my replacement batteries happened to be in the car 5 minutes walk away then this is how I do it.

Taking it one step further

If you want the pop-up flash light to illuminate the top half of the photo you need to cover the bottom half of the camera pop-up flash.  For example a model’s face.  If you were taking a photo of a flower with the subject in the lower half of the frame then you would cover the top of the flash to light the bottom half of the image.

DSLR Pop-Up Flash Portrait

Getting Creative – What else can you do with a pop-up flash?

Diffused Light

Hold a piece of tissue paper between the subject and the pop-up flash.  The further the tissue from the camera the more diffused the light.  Here is an example from Poland a few years ago when my speedlight was damaged in my bag so all I had was the pop-up flash for an entire weekend of model photography. Model – Agnieszka.

Ambient light & pop-up flash

Life is Tough..                        Handheld @ 1/10

There are lots of ways to make a diffuser for a pop-up flash.  An empty 35mm film white plastic pot used to be an easy DIY fix.  Nowadays eBay is full of cheap light modifiers so you can pick one up there for very little money.

Bounced light

In a low light situation you can bounce the pop-up flash onto a white or silver card held in front of the flash and angled at a wall or ceiling to create in direct lighting.  You can even just bounce it off your hand but you need to remember that bounced light will take the colour of the surface it is being bounced off.

Gelled flash

You can use a sweet wrapped or speedlight flash gel to colour the light output of your pop-up flash.  Why would you do this?  For example if you are shooting in a hotel that has tungsten lights (orange colour) you may want to match the colour of the flash to the room light.  By gelling the flash you can do this and then either leave the photo the same colour or adjust your camera white balance to the desired setting, such as “indoor”, “tungsten” or manually setting the camera white balance.

Photography workshops and tuition

I teach group photography workshops in London and 1-2-1 photography tuition from my studio in Coventry on out on location.  I specialise in portraiture, lighting and how to operate a Leica M camera.  If you think you could benefit from one of my photography courses then feel free to get in touch – Photography Workshops

Sample images from the Coventry workshop using one off camera speedlight to give different effects

Nikkor 200mm f2 Ai-s

Leica Summarit 50mm f1.5 Portrait

Leica Summicron 90mm f2

Leica M9 Fashion

London Workshop – Aug 2014

London Photography Workshop – August 2014

Matthew Osborne Photography

 

London Photography Workshop – August 2014

Mr Leica Workshop

 

Team photo from the August 30th, 2014 portrait photography workshop in Central London finishing with St. Pauls Cathedral as a backdrop (again!). Left to right on the photo, Rachel, Trang (model), Adam and Gurnek. I had not worked with Trang before but she was recommended to me by another model.  Trang had no modelling experience but was interested in trying it. As for all my model shoots I worked closely with Trang during the week before the photo shoot to advise, clothes, make up, location, expectations etc etc.

 

The importance of learning how to direct portrait poses

I was almost glad Trang had no experience as I meant I had to work harder directing every pose on the day.  I feel it is better for photography students to learn how to direct posing, here by shadowing me, so when they have a shoot of their own they can use some of the same skills to prep their model.

 

For example

If a photographer works with a very experienced model for their first model shoot they may find they have to give little direction and get great looking photos.  They will probably pat themselves on the back once they review the images and say i’m good at this.  Then, on their second shoot they get to work with another very pretty subject but this time they have no experience.  The ‘model’ may assume the generic ‘bus stop’ stance, feet together and arms by their side and say “what do you want me to do?”.  Now the same photographer suddenly becomes unstuck and it is highly likely the images will not be as good as either the photographer or subject has hoped.  They might scratch their head after and say what went wrong this time when I was so good the first time?

Answer.  You need to know how to pose a subject to get the best from them.

 

A good portrait is more than just the pose

The pose is only the tip of the iceberg it terms of getting a nice image when working with a model/ subject but you will get to pick up other little tricks when shadowing me for the day.  Examples: How I communicate to my subject.  How I use light, available light and artificial light. How I select my location and choice of clothes and styling.

Photography Workshop

 

Here is a link to the Flickr group I have setup to share the photos taken by everyone attending – https://www.flickr.com/groups/londonphotographyworkshop/

 

The next portrait photography workshop in London is on Saturday September 13th, 2014.  There are still places available for this day if you are interested.

 

Here are a few photos I took during the workshop and you can see photos by others in the group on the Flickr link above:

(All photos are taken with a Leica M9 camera + Leica Summicron 50mm f2 v5 lens as an in camera black and white JPEG processed via Lightroom 3. No Photoshop as awaiting new computer).

London Portrait Photography Workshop
Portrait Photography Tuition
How to pose a model
Photography Workshop
Available Light Portrait

 

Medium format film photography

In addition to using the Leica M9 I also took my new Fuji GF 670 medium format film folding camera to London.  I had the GF 670 camera in the 6×6 film format (can also select 6×7) and shot two rolls of black and white C41 Ilford XP2 Super 400 film (to use up the old film (from the fridge) and to get it lab developed with my other colour C41 film).

Leica M9 photos are now the norm for me so I get far more excited by my film photography, whether the new GF670 (4 rolls of film now waiting to get developed!)(very very excited as the first photos from the camera and include two rolls shot in Poland), the 35mm Leica M2 film camera, the Mamiya RZ 67 or any of my other film cameras.  I used to favour 6×6 film format when I first discovered film photography a few years ago using a ARAX-CM (Kiev 88) and a Pentacon Six TL so it was great to compose my subjects in a square frame again.  It’s like Instagram but 1000x better and real! 🙂

#fuji gf670 & #Leica M9 www.mrleica.com

Photography Workshops Autumn 2014 dates:

  • Saturday September 13th, 2014 – Model: Lauma (Lativian)(see my Flickr stream for example images)
  • Saturday October 25th, 2014 – Model: TBC but possibly Katie or Trang.

Hope to see you there! 🙂

More details..

 

Location:
Central London

Model:
TBC

Meeting Place:
TBC

Duration:
6hrs

Start time:
TBC depending on attendees but normally 11:00am

What equipment do you require on the day?
As a minimum you will require a camera with manual settings (even if you use the aperture priority or shutter priority settings to take your photos) and ideally a camera body with interchangeable lenses. I will bring a speedlight with Nikon triggers. You do not need a speedlight (flash) but feel free to bring with you if you have one. Please bring whatever lens you would use for portraiture for you style. This can be wide angle through to telephoto. I will bring a 5-in-1 reflector but again if you prefer to use any other light modifiers please bring them with you if not too bulky.

Previous experience required?
No experience of portraiture required. If you have some photography experience that would be beneficial but be no means essential.

What is included on the workshop?:

I give you the opportunity to shadow me on a location model shoot in London photographing a model on the street. I will teach you how I see light and shadows and use these to enhance your portraiture photography. We will use Central London as a backdrop to our portraits and I will show you how to get the best from different light sources. Lighting will include daylight only, daylight + reflector, daylight + speedlight (on camera and off camera flash), artificial light sources such as tungsten lights and any other light source we come across. I will teach you how to pose a model, tips as to how to work with models and what are the do’s and don’ts when working with models for the first time. I normally include some street photography as we move between locations so if that is your thing I will also show you how to zone focus and focus easily on moving subjects with manual lenses. I normally break up the day for light refreshments in a reputable coffee shop. This gives us chance to talk techniques and rest our legs over coffee and gives the model chance to change outfits ready for the second half. Please review my images on Flickr before signing up to the workshop so you understand the style of images I will be teaching. Thanks.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/32681588@N03/sets/72157633135264195/

Cost:
£150 per person.
Deposit of £25 payable in advance to hold you place. Balance payable on the day (or before).

Birmingham workshops and Coventry photography studio workshops:
If you cannot make it to one of my London workshops but would like to book tuition, I run 1-2-1 evening and weekend workshops from my Coventry studio at £35ph. I have had visitors from Alaska, Switzerland and Italy to name a few so if you are not UK based please do not rule it out. I am also looking to run workshops in a second city, Birmingham and also perhaps Poland if the demand is there.

If you would like book a day or request more details on any of the above please contact me at mosbornephotography@gmail.com

Thanks

Matt

http://www.matthewosbornephotography.co.uk/Photography-Courses.html

Featured: MOTW – Gina

Featured Model of the Week (“MOTW”) : Gina

MatthewOsbornePhotography – Model Photographer
This is a new feature to share some of my favourite model photography/ fashion and beauty images from a selection of the best models I have had the pleasure of working with over the last few years, both here in the UK and overseas.  Photos have been captured with various camera equipment and you can see the details by clicking on the images.
Model – Gina
Location – Coventry UK
Gina lives locally to me so we have shot together on many occasions and with lots of different cameras / lenses.  See if you can spot the Leica images (and if you are really smart what lens I used!), the Nikon images and those shot on film rather than digital!  Enjoy!
Recent photos taking during a 1-2-1 portrait photography workshop last weekend

Modern Classic
Classic Portraiture
Leica Summicron 75 - Studio Portrait
Polaroid by www.MrLeica.com

Older photos (mixed)

Love This :) Gina
Gina with Contax 645
Gina with Contax 645
Gina in the Snow
Gina
Leica M8 Studio Portrait
Zeiss Planar
Model Photography
Lencarta Elite Pro 300
D800 Fashion Photography
Voigtlander Nokton 35mm f1.2 ASPH ii
M8 Fashion
Samyang 24mm f1.4
Lumix G3 Fashion
Leica M9 Portrait
Leica M9 & Voigtlander 35mm f1.2 ii
Gina with Contax 645
Nikon D800 Fashion

And finally a few photos in colour..

Leica M9 Fashion
Leica Fashion Photography

Leica Fashion

Leica Noctilux Fashion

I hope you liked them?
Look out for my “MOTW” blog posts for more model photography photos going forward!
Thanks
Matt

London Photography Workshop – July14 + NEW DATES

London Photography Workshop – July 2014 + New Dates for Autumn 2014!

http://www.MatthewOsbornePhotography.co.uk

 

London Photography Workshop – July 2014

London Photography Workshop 2014

Team photo from the July 19th, 2014 portrait photography workshop in Central London. Left to right, Daniel, Leona (Model), Paul (on left photo) / Me (MrLeica.com) (on right photo). The weather forecast was bad so I had my umbrella but we got really lucky and had a day of sunshine.  Mark was not able to make the trip so there was only four of us on the day. Leona kindly modelled for us and was brilliant.  When Leona and I shot together in London last time it was freezing so it was nice to shoot some different clothes.  The four of us had a really nice day doing what we all love, photography (modelling – Leona!).  There are already dates in the diary for a follow up workshop.

Here is a link to the Flickr group I have setup to share the photos taken by everyone attending – https://www.flickr.com/groups/londonphotographyworkshop/

The next portrait photography workshop in London is on August 30th (fully booked).

Here are a few photos I took during the workshop:

Portrait Photography Workshop, London

London Photography Workshop

Portrait Photography Workshop, London

Leica Art

New Dates – Photography Workshops Autumn 2014

I am happy to announce two more London Photography Workshop dates:

  • Saturday September 13th, 2014 – 3 places available
  • Saturday October 25th, 2014 – 3 places available

Hope to see you there! 🙂

More details..

 

Location:
Central London

Model:
TBC (Perhaps Katie or Leona, or a possibly a different model)

Meeting Place:
TBC

Duration:
6hrs

Start time:
TBC depending on attendees but normally 11:00am

What equipment do you require on the day?
As a minimum you will require a camera with manual settings (even if you use the aperture priority or shutter priority settings to take your photos) and ideally a camera body with interchangeable lenses. I will bring a speedlight with Nikon triggers. You do not need a speedlight (flash) but feel free to bring with you if you have one. Please bring whatever lens you would use for portraiture for you style. This can be wide angle through to telephoto. I will bring a 5-in-1 reflector but again if you prefer to use any other light modifiers please bring them with you if not too bulky.

Previous experience required?
No experience of portraiture required. If you have some photography experience that would be beneficial but be no means essential.

What is included on the workshop?:

I give you the opportunity to shadow me on a location model shoot in London photographing a model on the street. I will teach you how I see light and shadows and use these to enhance your portraiture photography. We will use Central London as a backdrop to our portraits and I will show you how to get the best from different light sources. Lighting will include daylight only, daylight + reflector, daylight + speedlight (on camera and off camera flash), artificial light sources such as tungsten lights and any other light source we come across. I will teach you how to pose a model, tips as to how to work with models and what are the do’s and don’ts when working with models for the first time. I normally include some street photography as we move between locations so if that is your thing I will also show you how to zone focus and focus easily on moving subjects with manual lenses. I normally break up the day for light refreshments in a reputable coffee shop. This gives us chance to talk techniques and rest our legs over coffee and gives the model chance to change outfits ready for the second half. Please review my images on Flickr before signing up to the workshop so you understand the style of images I will be teaching. Thanks.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/32681588@N03/sets/72157633135264195/

Cost:
£150 per person.
Deposit of £25 payable in advance to hold you place. Balance payable on the day (or before).

Birmingham workshops and Coventry photography studio workshops:
If you cannot make it to one of my London workshops but would like to book tuition, I run 1-2-1 evening and weekend workshops from my Coventry studio at £35ph. I have had visitors from Alaska, Switzerland and Italy to name a few so if you are not UK based please do not rule it out.  I am also looking to run workshops in a second city, Birmingham and also perhaps Poland if the demand is there.

If you would like book a day or request more details on any of the above please contact me at mosbornephotography@gmail.com

Thanks

Matt

http://www.matthewosbornephotography.co.uk/Photography-Courses.html