Monday, September 23, 2013


Our yearly neighborhood parade provides the opportunity to grab some shots of our neighbors, as well as the chance to experiment with a variety of photographic techniques.

I chose this year to photograph the event with my Mamiya 135 telephoto attached to my trusty old Pentax Spotmatic.  The 135 is a big help for getting close to the action in this type of public space.

Besides helping to fill the available frame space with the primary subject, the restricted depth of focus of the long lens provides additional separation of the foreground subject and the background, as well as enhancing the appearance of sharpness.  To further emphasize these image characteristics I chose to use a fine-grained and relatively slow film, TMAX 100.  That let me shoot my back-lit subjects at f-5.6 and 1/250, which was fast enough to stop action while blurring the background.

My portrayals of the parade in previous years featured pictures from my Hawkeye Flash with flipped lens, my Soviet-era Contax-copy Kiev II, and the Vivitar Ultra Wide and Slim.


Jim said...

Super. And thanks for the tech description of how you made the shot.

I just finished shooting the Spotmatic I bought on that auction site. I guess I'm just a pansy but I really found stopping down to be a pain when I could use my K1000, which omits that step but handles otherwise identically. However, try as I might I'll find no delightful Mamiya 135mm for it.

Mike said...

The Mamiya 135 has been a great resource for my photogaphy for many years; I don't even recall where I got it. It performs very well even wide open, and it doesn't mind my attaching a 2x extender which I often do for my zoo pictures.

I have a Takumar 135 that is a stop faster and even more compact than the Mamiya, but it lacks the built-in extendable lens shade, and doesn't make sharper pictures.

I would also very much like to find a 135 for my K1000 which I particularly like for its brighter viewscreen, but have had no luck so far in the search.

Julio F said...

Nice, sharp portrait with excellent OOF background.

I tend to use an 80-200 zoom for these subjects in the K-1000. I have a no-name version which is sharp enough. For me, a fixed telephoto becomes a bit tricky with moving subjects in a parade, although you did pretty well!

You might use your M42 with an adapter in the K, but I do not know if the auto aperture works.