Gear Lust & Chasing the Look


I’m often sucked into the vortex that is lusting after new gear. While there is something to be said for the improvements in technology i’m more often that not thinking about larger format cameras – Hasselblad 503C and the Linhof Techno. While thinking about these I entertain the notion of a digital back but in reality I’m thinking about what people have created with these and similar cameras using film.

It took a while but it finally dawned on me that what I’m hankering after is not necessarily the gear but the look that is created. The look of course is in part gear dependent since each of these cameras has a unique mechanism, good but different lenses, that I’m sure but can’t prove to you today that have a unique look to them, and then of course there’s the film that imparts a certain look too. Camera body, lens and film all give a distinctive look as do the choices made after capture, the choices made during development of chemistry and paper.

For a while most of the images that I shot with my iPhone were processed to give a ‘lomography look’ to them and I did entertain for a while getting a loom film camera but at the same time thought that I ought to be able to create that look digitally with the camera that I already have. More recently I’ve been taking gritty black and white images with my iPhone and again felt that I ought to be able to achieve a similar effect with the DSLR that I already have. The image above is a first attempt. I’d be interested in your thoughts. I’m chasing the look, just with the tools that I already have to hand.

6 Replies to “Gear Lust & Chasing the Look”

  1. Andy, based on the above image I think that you are doing just FINE with the tools you already have at hand!! that image is superb!!! truly!!!

  2. Hi Andy, I can only agree with the first poster in the comment section. The reason I use a medium format camera and develop the film myself is I’m useless when it comes to photoshop. Levels,layers,un-sharpmask are all a mystery to me. I can do the basics but nothing fancy. It’s amazing what some people can do .With an iPhone there are some people doing amazing work. Some shots have made me question the whole point of going through the film process.
    For me it’s the joy of using the equipment. and getting what I see in my head on film.

    1. Thanks Lizz! I do keep telling myself that it’s the 2 inches behind the camera that is most important but the siren call of new gear always calls.

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