Mamiya 645 Pro TL with Kodak Portra 400VC

It’s been quite some time since I shot with with the Mamiya 645. The Plaubel Makina 67 and Fuji GSW690 have been my primary medium format cameras, mostly due their larger 6×7 and 6×9 size respectively.

I really was surprised to see how small the 6×4.5 negatives looked to me when I got them from the lab. Especially when compared to 6×9 they really look tiny !!

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(Mamiya 645 Pro TL, Sekor-C 150mm f/4, B+W 110N filter, Kodak Portra 400VC
shot at f/11, 40 seconds exposure)

The Mamiya 645 Pro TL is a fully automatic camera with auto advance film motor, an excellent in camera meter, timer and multi exposure functions and the ability to change film backs mid-roll. It’s much easier and faster to shoot than my other MF cameras, and in addition to that, it can change lenses. Since it has a mirror, most of my shots are done on a tripod to reduce shake from mirror vibration. Due to being a SLR camera, you can instantly view things like depth of field or the effects of filters.

For this roll, I only used the 150mm f/4 lens (which is 90mm equivalent in 35mm format). This is a lens that will probably remain on the camera for a long time, since its actually the only reason I keep the Mamiya. The 28mm equivalent of the GSW690 is excellent for landscapes and the 40mm equivalent of the Plaubel serves most uses, so the M645 will be used with this more specialized (to me) focal length.

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(Mamiya 645 Pro TL, Sekor-C 150mm f/4, Kodak Portra 400VC)

The Kodak Portra 400VC is one my favorite films (now discontinued). It really renders beautifully an image even under harsh conditions. It has for a very large dynamic range and the subtle tones transitions from shadows to highlights that I I much prefer than digital. It’s 400 ISO speed (although I rate it at 250 or 320 depending on the situation) allows for handheld shooting even on a camera like the M645. Due to the larger negative size, there’s less grain than a 35mm film.

Color negatives may lack the color fidelity and crisp look of a slide like Provia, but they have a much greater dynamic range which fits high contrast scenes and they are far easier and cheaper to develop, so I still use them.

Enjoy the rest of the images, all taken with the M645 and 150mm lens.

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(C)2012 Konstantinos Besios. All rights reserved.

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