In your bag 399, Klaus Doblmann
Todays bag is lovely. Klaus gives us a beautiful description as to why he uses the Mamiya M645 system and what it means to him. Come and have a look at this great bag.
I’m Klaus Doblmann, 26, amateur photographer from Austria. Photography – passed on from my grandfather and father – has been a passion of mine since I was a very little boy and got my first camera. I’ve been shooting film for more than half my life, then switched to a digital body and subsequently began losing interest.
I was a student, didn’t have much money to spend and the new body needed a new lens as the old ones were horrible on it – I never got around to buy something new. Earlier this year I rediscovered film photography and have been a 99% film shooter ever since. In fact the only two digital cameras left are the crappy point & shoot I used to take the picture of my gear and my phone.
Why film? Simply because I love doing stuff with my hands (developing and printing) and I love being able to physically hold something in my hands instead of just having bits and bytes on a hard drive. It also gets me away from my computer which is a welcome change from my job as a graphics designer and, well, you can get some really, really great gear used for very little money. I shoot on Canon EOS, Minolta SR and Mamiya 645 – the latter being my most used gear now for personal projects and the one I currently keep in my main bag all the time. The EOS stuff mostly gets out when I shoot events and have to use flash but the Mamiya really is where my heart is. That’s why I wanted to share this part of my gear collection with you.
Without further ado, what’s in my (Tenba messenger, love it!) bag?
– Mamiya M645 with metered prism and 80/2,8 attached
– Sekor C 35/3,5 N
– Sekor C 55/2,8 S
– Sekor C 150/3,5 N
– Gossen Digisix lightmeter
– Cokin ND and ND-grad filter + holders and a cir-polarizer (yes, it’s in the wrong packaging)
– Film (usually Ilford for b&w and Fuji/Kodak when I shoot colour)
– spare battery
– misc. bits ‘n bobs not really worth mentioning (pen, paper, remote trigger, lens cloth…)
What is it I shoot and why a Mamiya M645? Well, I’m not much of a people photographer although I do the odd portrait/group/event shoot for organizations and clubs/parties in my hometown. I’m more of a landscape, cityscape and abstracts shooter.
I love to document whatever presents itself to me, show the beauty in everyday and ordinary objects and situations or offer unusual points of view – that’s what drives me and keeps me going. The M645 is a wonderful tool to achieve just that. Built like a tank, rugged, easy to use and a reliable professional tool in every regard. 120 film is more expensive per shot than 35mm (or digital for that matter), it forces me to work in a precise and thoughtful manner which I believe really helps my pictures. It keeps me sharp, makes me think about light and shape instead of starting to shoot, looking at the monitor, reframe, check and recheck some more. One thoroughly composed frame per subject is usually all I need, I won’t press the shutter until everything’s perfect. Sometimes I might spend a minute (or five) looking for the perfect angle and then decide not to take the shot or come back at a later time because the light’s not right. No need to take a picture I won’t print anyway (or, if I were to shoot digital, would only delete afterwards).
The 6×4,5 format is perfect for me. It allows 15 (yes, it’s 15 on Mamiya bodies, not 16 as on other ones) frames per 120 film and still offers 2,7 times the resolution of 35mm film. It’s a trade-off against the larger 120 formats for sure but it works for me. 6×4,5 bodies are also much smaller and lighter than 6×7 ones – far easier to carry when walking around for a few hours. The lenses in the Mamiya system are fantastic and can be had fairly cheap (except for the 35mm which is somewhat expensive). I chose this lens setup because it covers all the focal lengths I ever really need without having to carry around useless weight. The corresponding focal lenghts in 35mm are roughly 21, 35, 50 and 100mm so I can cover everything from (super-)wideangle for landscapes and special effects to portraits with very shallow DOF. What’s my main lens I use the most? Easy, the 80mm 2,8 – I use it for about 80-90% of all my images. I just love the look of a “normal” lens. The 55mm is great when I need something a little wider and the 35mm really has to be one of the best wide-angles ever made. I haven’t used the 150 too much yet, the shallow DOF isn’t the best for handheld shots in low-light autumn conditions, but I’d love to use it more soon when winter really sets in and the sun starts shining again. I might also get something a little longer for compressed perspectives, but I’m waiting for the right offer to appear.
Well, I guess that’s really all there is – thanks for reading and I’m really looking forward to what other people shoot and what they shoot on (any other film shooters out there?).
Klaus Doblmann M.A.
Thanks for sharing your personal story of your camera and your photography, it is lovely to hear.
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Keep them coming folks, we need more submissions, so get your bag on Japancamerahunter.com. Send me a hi resolution image of the bag (please make sure it is horizontal) and its contents, with some details about yourself and what you shoot. Oh and don’t forget your contact details (twitter, flickr, tumbler et al). Send the bag shots here.