Photographer Michel Jones has one of the most unique photography-related tattoos we’ve seen yet. While most photography enthusiasts who get inked may choose designs that are easily recognizable by the general public (e.g. cameras, lenses, photos), Jones went with a design that is enigmatic to most people and even foreign to many photographers. His tattoo is based on the backing paper that comes with 120 film.
In the Star Wars universe, Lightsabers are hand-built as part of their wielders’ training, and each one is as unique as the person who made it. Photographer Matt Abelson seems to have the same idea about cameras: he builds high-quality one-of-a-kind pinhole cameras based on his own designs.
The Hyperscope (shown above) is one of his creations. It’s a cylindrical can camera that takes medium-format roll film, and is crafted out of chunks of aluminum.
Just because a camera has bellows doesn’t mean it’s vintage. Just announced today, the new Lomography Belair X 6-12 has bellows as well. It’s a portable medium-format camera that shoots auto-exposed photographs on 6×12 film — the world’s first camera to do so.
One of the latest entrants in the at-home film scanning game is the Plustek OpticFilm 120. Just announced a few months ago and made available for pre-orders earlier this month, the OpticFilm 120 is a professional caliber scanner that can digitize both 35mm and 120mm medium format film. With a price tag of $2,000, it’s not exactly wallet-friendly for the average film shooter, but is quite affordable when compared to other medium-format pro-grade scanners on the market.
If you’ve been wondering about the image quality of the scanner (and whether or not it stacks up well against your local photo lab), Plustek has released a few full-resolution untouched scans.
Update: We’re hearing that Walmart is no longer offering medium format film development.
Want to try your hand at shooting medium format 120 film but not sure where you’d get it developed? Stacie Grissom of Stars for Streetlights recommends WalMart as an easy and affordable option:
I have an awesome tip for you. I actually got my Holga prints developed through Walmart for about $3 per roll. That’s it. I could not believe it. Here’s what you need to do:
For each roll of film, take a separate film envelope and write “SEND OUT ONLY” at the top. Then fill in your info. “Send Out Only” means that Walmart will send it to a photo lab to be developed instead of developing it in the store. I don’t know how many (if any) Walmarts still develop 35mm film, but they definitely won’t do 120 film. Just send it out to a lab that knows what to do. Next, in the special instructions section, make sure you write “120 Film Processing, 4×4 prints.” And then drop them in the box! It’s seriously that simple. I was really paranoid when I sent out my film, but Walmart actually did a nice job.
Grissom also offers a number of other tips for shooting with Holga cameras.
7 Tips for Holga Cameras [Stars for Streetlights]