In August, my wife, children and I were invited to my niece’s wedding in Surrey; the next day we were due to go straight from there to the New Forest for a short holiday. With the next issue at the back of my mind, I spent a few (?) minutes deciding which camera to take. I did not want to take a mass of equipment but I did want something for all occasions.
I settled on my Rolleimagic II. It gives 6x6 negatives, has programmed exposure (so no need for a meter) with manual override, flash sync at all speeds and it is quite compact. I planned to take the 90° prism but it would not clip on securely, so rather than risking a dent, it remained at home (I did miss it though). I took my Metz 45 flash for ample power, if required. I took some FP4, which was years out of date but had been refrigerated and some assorted out of date colour negative film (I have been slowly using up all my old films recently!).
“Where’s this going?” you may be asking. Bring on the “Digital Issue”! There were two official professional photographers at the wedding; a “young’un” and a “less young’un” both using Nikon digital cameras. I was surprised that they were taking photos throughout the church service. There was no sound from the cameras and few flashes. They were busily snapping away. At the reception they continued with enthusiasm and stayed to the bitter end. A few weeks later my sister showed us the proofs; printed on A4 paper using a two inch “longest side” grid pattern. The images had been output on a dye sublimation printer (results almost as good as photographic paper). From memory, there must have been in excess of 300 images, loads of them, all excellent.
I was very impressed. I loathe doing wedding photography, just in case, when the films come back, it has all gone wrong. I took three rolls of B&W “snapshots”. A TLR without a prism is not really suited to snaps, especially with rapidly changing distances - say no more! The point of all this is COST. The last time I photographed a wedding using my 6008 and 3003, the film and processing costs, just to get to the proof stage, were about £150. These two photographers had taken three times as many photos as I would have and their material costs would only be 20 sheets of A4 dye-sub paper @ say, £1.50 a sheet!
However, I was surprised that their “bricks” with battery pack, grip, lens, etc. are very similar, if not larger in size than a 6006/8 and certainly larger than a TLR. – Weight: who knows? – Kit cost: as much as a Rolleiflex or more? From postings on ‘rollei_list’, it seems that in the US, the demand is back for film photography at weddings, digital is out; anyone can take loads of digi-pix and charge a price; film takes skill and experience to use. Now, with the Hy6, you have the best of both worlds.....................!
Front Cover: River Verzasca by Wolfgang Freihen
3 Images from Franke & Heidecke website
4 A visit to Franke und Heidecke GmbH
- by Emmanuel Bigler and Dirk-Roger Schmitt
7 Full Circle by Ron Wootton
8 The Rollei SL 66 “Aquamarin” underwater housing by Wolfgang Freihen
12 News from Photokina
13 Your Forum
15 Sales and Wants
15 Nicole Kidman with Rolleiflex Automat
16 “Vario Distagon 50” by Carlos Freaza
18 David Morgan Looks at......
19 Tales from the camera shop by John E Lewis
Back Cover: Photographs for the family album by John Wild