Masked Twins with Canon AF35MII

Twins, originally uploaded by *jj*.

aka New Sure Shot, Autoboy II and many other things. I like the feel of the lens. It seems a bit softer than the Nikon L35AF but it does have a nice quality in conjunction with the flash. The boys arms and chest have a nice modeling of light (which, when I think of it, is a term, ie "modeling," only used in drawing classes back in fine arts school).

Type Fully automatic 35mm Lens-Shutter autofocus camera
Picture Size 24 x 36 mm
AF System Triangulation system with near-infrared beam. Prefocus enabled.
Lens 38mm f/2.8 (4 elements in 4 groups)
Shutter Electronically-controlled programmed shutter and aperture. EV 6 (f/2.8 at 1/8 sec.) - 17 (f/16 at 1/500 sec.). Built-in electronic self-timer.
Viewfinder Reversed Galilean viewfinder with projected frames. Within the image area are the AF frame, zone focusing marks for near, medium, and far distances, parallax correction marks, and battery check and camera-shake warning. 0.45x magnification.
EE SPC for full-auto program EE. Metering range of EV 6 - 17 (at ISO 100). Film speed range of ISO 25 - 400.
Built-in Flash Guide No. 12 (at ISO 100 in meters). When camera-shake warning lamp lights, pull out the flash switch to pop-up the flash which then starts charging automatically.
Power Source Two 1.5 V size-AA batteries
Film Loading &

After opening camera back, align film leader at mark then advance to frame 1 automatically by pressing the shutter button. Film advance is automatic.
Frame Counter Counts up. Resets automatically when camera back is opened. Counts down during rewind.
Film Rewind Automatic rewind with the lock release button and rewind switch.
Dimensions & Weight

125 x 76 x 46 mm, 300 g

My son's view on my obsession with photography: for Father's Day

Cameras used:

  • Werra II with Carl Zeiss Jena Tessar 50mm F2.8
  • digital HP Photosmart 635 with 2.1 megapixels!
  • Olympus Trip 35
  • Konica Autoreflex T3 with Hexanon 50mm F1.7
  • Olympus Infinity Stylus Epic mju-II
  • digital USB keychain camera Transcend Jetflash 128MB
  • Konica Autoreflex T3 with Hexanon 50mm F1.4
  • Yashica 635 Twin Lens Reflex (cropped)
  • Canon A2 with Canon EF 50mm F1.8 MII
  • can't remember, maybe the MJU-II OR Nikon One Touch aka L35AF2
  • Nikon L35AF with 35mm F2.8
  • last shot, total mystery...

Tony's dandelion shot

dandelion clocks, originally uploaded by pho-Tony.

with a Zeiss Box Tengor.

This man is shooting 52 cameras in 52 weeks

Go Tony, go Tony. Keeping tabs on this blog is FUN.

I do like the desperate measures the 52 Cameras guy takes to meet his objective.

It is one way of getting out there to take pictures - which is always a good idea.

Funny things happen. he shoots with man dressed as a Storm Trooper with a Zeiss Box Tengor 1934 (awful) and then does something brilliant with dandelions with the same camera. Which goes to show, old cameras somehow work when you shoot "old" with them...

1200 photographs from Polaroid's collection to hit auction block

Sotheby's will be selling off a portion of Polaroid's collection next week.

Most notable are Ansel Adam's Moonrise, Hernandez, New Mexico. The image was featured in his book on Polaroid Land Photography - an addendum, sort of - of his The Camera, The Negative, and The Print series of instructional photo books.

The above image is Adams'Tetons and Snake River.

Also in the collection will be some from Robert Mappelthorpe. I'd be very interested to see which images of his will be up for sale.

June rain, photographer's pain

It has been raining a lot.

All winter I have been anticipating warmer, sunnier weather, in hope I could continue my beach series of portraits of men by the waterside. It was there I discovered the joys and aesthetic value of automatic point and shoots of the early-mid 1980s. Particularly, the Nikon L35AF and the Nikon One Touch (aka Nikon L35AF2).

I bought the One Touch at Fotofun. It wasn't cheap. I think I paid $25. But what a lens.

After some online research, I sought out the Nikon L35AF. Halfway through last summer I found one at an SPCA Thrift Store in Vancouver for $5.

I was with these cameras (with a cameo by an Olympus Infinity Stylus mju-I) I started to take the Beach portraits. Obviously, it started with my documentation of my twin sons horsing around in the sand and water but when they were developed and scanned I noticed two things about the cameras: sharpness and light drop off.

Because I do like putting my principal subject dead centre, the light drop off at the corners didn't really bother me. In fact, it helped emphasize the centre of the frame. I suppose if it softened immensely at the corner, I would have liked the L35s less but they don't.

The cameras offered a technique to my aesthetic. In short, they have become precious to me.

I'm willing to risk them over salt water in pursuit of the Beach project. I'm unwiling to damage them in gosh awful rain.

I've been thinking about which camera I wouldn't mind sacrificing to the rain gods - one does have to make lemonade out of lemons - but I haven't been able to choose.

Which camera would you use? Canon A2/EOS 5? Should I find myself the waterproof version of the L35?

I do have a waterproof Canon A-1, but I kind of don't like it. Life would be simpler if it would just stop raining.

Mega pixel schmixel

A great online/by phone used camera shop in Victoria, Camera Traders, put up a nice post about mega pixels and camera sensors. It is possible to have too much of a good thing.

I've bought over the phone an Olympus XA2 from them. They're very good retailers. Check them out.

But what I love best of what they are doing is their Twitter/Twitpic account. It keeps you up to date on what's coming into the shop. Better yet, they post pictures of the used gear coming in.

It's like stopping by the shop around the corner everyday to see what's new. Good job, Anthony!

D40 double-take

I like my Nikon D40 but not enough to carry it or use all that often.

Besides taking pictures of my cameras, I rarely feel the desire to fire it.

My reasons for overlooking the camera is part aesthetic. I haven't been able to take images with the right feel.

I blame the lens (and the user, too). I have the 18-55mm kit zoom. When I shoot it at around 35mm the minimum aperture is around f3.5. Dislike it immensely.

I know I should try to find an AF-S with a wider maximum f-stop but I wasn't sure if it would be worth the investment. I decided to take a peek at the D40 users group on Flickr. I stumbled across the work of bocianix.

I don't who he is. Or just how he uses his D40 but his images from what seems to be a trip to India are stunning. All shot on a 6.2 megapixel camera.

I might have to get a fixed focal length AF-S Nikkor.

Finally - I found what I have been looking for, the Nikon L35AF

UPDATE: Here are the proper specifications. Essay follows:
Lens: 35mm F2.8-17.5 (5 elements in 4 groups - Sonnar type)
Filter thread: 46mm
Shutter: 1/8 to 1/430 sec

NOTE: personal experience has shown the camera is capable of 2 sec exposures IF you push the flash head down and keep it down after the camera takes a light reading until exposure. Some people tape it down.

Focus range: 0.8 metres to infinity
ISO Range: 50 to 1000 ASA on later models. Set manually. Early 1984 models only went up to 400 ASA.
Power: Two AA batteries

I had this camera. I gave it as a gift and then went on a hunt to find a replacement.

I love the Nikon L35AF. It feels like a real rangefinder, though in fact its just an auto focus. It was Nikon's first AF camera actually. Still, when I carry it around, I imagine I'm Henri Cartier-Bresson, if HCB used a super noisy machine with no manual controls besides picking the ISO, and if HCB liked wider lens like the L35's 35mm focal length. I think he called that particular focal length "shrill."

Oh well, irregardless, the lens is crazy good and big. I prefer it to using my Olympus Infinity Stylus Epic -- would you believe. The good old Olympus, tack sharp and all, needs to fire the lens out of the body to get in focus. I sometimes find it very alarming. The L35 keeps the lens movement within the barrel.

It has a metal frame. And there are a series of ways to make the camera shoot as if you had aperture control .... kind of...
If you are new to the camera or curious about its performance, please visit the flickr group:

It's populated by a dedicated group of Nikon L35AF shooters who have tried to get the most out of the camera and its limitations.

There you will find in the discussion topics ways to manipulate the camera so it will shoot with no flash (this requires a photographer/behaviourial hack) and how to force a wider aperture.

Plus you'll learn how to take street photos with it suffering the grinding sound of the motor - at least for one shot.

If you're curious or in pure wonderment about the lens, check out Nikon's story of the Sonnar-type lens design behind the L35AF.



Baldalux Radionar 105mm f4.5

, originally uploaded by *jj*.

Shot with a Baldalux with a Schneider-Kreuznach Radionar (triplet). Stopped down to use with a Vivitar 283 flash.

Had to crop due to parallax. I was around 34 to 36 inches away.