I’ll start by apologizing for the lack of updates. Sorry!
Zeiss 50mm planar left, Sigma 50mm right
So this weekend I really wanted to shoot a roll of T-MAX 400 in my Rollei SL35, but the mirror seems to need some adjustment, and it became a non trivial endeavour. I had picked up an SL35 to Canon EF adapter ring some years back. I had contemplating putting a Zeiss Rollei lens on my Canon 5E film body, but I felt like experimenting with the lenses first. So I threw a Zeiss Planar 50mm f/1.8 on the old 20D body, turned off RAW shooting, and decided to take the camera with me to work today. The Zeiss lens may be 38 years old, but it really is a fantastic little piece of glass.
So I set off this morning with camera in hand and began snapping pictures. My first few exposures outside were very soft, even with the aperture stopped way down. I was beginning to worry there was an issue with the adapter ring hurting the infinity focus distance. While sitting on the subway I realized I had the aperture switch in the auto position. The Rollei SL35 is a rather clever little mechanical camera. When the lenses are in the auto-aperture mode, the aperture pedals only deploy when you meter or fire the shutter. So sadly my first few pictures were deletes.
It’s fun, in a challenging way, to use manual focus optics. It makes you think more about the exposure and framing I think too as a side effect. Also by not shooting in RAW you have to set your saturation, color balance and contrast all in the camera. The 20D may not have the image quality of more modern bodies, but it’s still quite a lot of fun. Here are some of the pictures from todays little exercise!
First test photo I took, wide open (its a ghost glued to a pie pumpkin)
The SL35 the lens came from, this is one of less common German made specimens
TTC train coming, lens wide open
A fine selection of office gourds
The composition isn't great, but I liked the bad white balance and ground texture
The 20D shows its poor low light performance in that last image at ISO 1600. I think the grain sorta adds to it though. I’ll surely experiment more tomorrow, work load permitting!
I really hate the WordPress editor, why can’t I side by side the images…