Freelance Photographer Cambridge - Blog | 05 - Where It All Began

January 06, 2017
bokeh photographic (Alistair Grant) - Freelance Photographer in Cambridge, St Ives, St Neots & Huntingdon. Food & Drink Photographer, Food Photographer, Drink Photographer, Product Photographer, Packshot Photographer, Pack Shot Photographer, Commercial Photographer, Restaurant Photographer, Culinary Photographer, Catering Photographer, Industrial Photographer, Agricultural Photographer, Farming Photographer, Editorial Photographer, Feature Photographer, Advertising Photographer, Event Photographer, Conference Photographer, Corporate Photographer, Business Photographer, Portrait Photographer, PR Photographer, Wedding Photographer, Property Photographer, Architectural Photographer, School Photographer and Photographic Training Courses in Cambridgeshire, Bedfordshire, Norfolk, Suffolk, Essex, Hertfordshire and East Anglia. St Ives, Cambridgeshire. Email: alistair.grant@bokehphotographic.co.uk, Tel: 07775 365507.    
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   Alistair Grant 

Freelance Photographer Cambridge & London

     

bokeh photographic: Blog 05

Freelance Photographer Cambridge Blog Image | 05 - Zenit TTL 35mm SLR Camera. © bokeh photographic (Alistair Grant): Freelance Photographer, St Ives, Cambridge, London and across the UK.Blog 05 - Where It All Began (Zenit TTL 35mm SLR Camera) | bokeh photographic - Alistair Grant | Freelance Photographer – Cambridge & London.Blog 05 – Where It All Began (Zenit TTL 35mm SLR Camera) by Alistair Grant - Food Photographer; Commercial Photographer; Event Photographer; Portrait Photographer; Corporate Photographer; PR Photographer; Wedding Photographer and Photographic Training Courses in Cambridgeshire, Bedfordshire, Norfolk, Suffolk, Essex, Hertfordshire and across the UK. Email: alistair.grant@bokehphotographic.co.uk, Tel: 07775 365507.

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Where It All Began

Whilst there were certainly other cameras beforehand this Zenit TTL 35mm SLR was my first ‘proper’ camera. I acquired it when I was aged around 10 years old. My father, an artist who specialised in landscapes and wildlife, particularly birds, bought the camera with the intention of taking photographs to use as a reference for his paintings. As it turned out, due to increasingly restricted mobility from rheumatoid arthritis, he instead had to rely on me setting the camera up outside his small studio in our back garden before he remotely triggered the shutter using a cable release from within the studio. As his condition gradually worsened I took on more and more of the photography until it effectively became my camera. Although I acquired the Zenit I unfortunately did not inherit my father’s artistic proficiency with the exception of one very important skill of direct relevance to photography: composition.

I still have the analogue Zenit - the photograph is a recent one - although I don’t use it professionally. Don’t get me wrong: there’s absolutely nothing wrong with the camera and it still takes great pictures. The reason is the price and increasingly limited availability of professional-grade film. In fact, the Zenit is in superb shape for a body that is nearly as old as mine. This is perhaps not surprising. Whilst I have looked after the camera it is also extremely solidly built.

Zenits were produced by the Soviet manufacturer KMZ (Krasnogorski Mekhanicheskii Zavod - Mechanical Factory of Krasnogorsk) whose factory near Moscow also produced military grade optical instrumentation for the USSR ‘Red’ Army. The technology was based, some would say plagiarised, from the far more expensive German Leica system. My particular model was produced from the mid-1970s to the mid-1980s and reportedly sold over 1.6 million units. It was an upgrade from the earlier EM model and incorporated stop-down TTL metering and a rewind crank. It came packaged with a Helios 44-2 58mm f/2.0 M42 screw-type lens which closed down to f/16 and had a focus range of 0.5m to infinity. My glass remains in excellent condition and in optical terms performs just as well, if not better, than my modern digital lenses. Of course, every camera has cons as well as pros. The downsides of the Zenit are the small, dark, blue-tinted viewfinder and its hefty weight bearing in mind that it is a film camera i.e. it doesn’t have a bulky battery yet it still weighs a ton!

The Zenit displays attributes I recognise in only a handful of modern cameras. Most people are surprised to learn that I rarely get excited about the latest camera releases as these invariably increasingly promulgate the automation of photography with the result that people are not necessarily taking better photographs despite the significant amount of money we now spend on kit. So if you ever come across me gazing longingly through a camera shop window you know now I'll be looking at the older kit!

   

→ Call Alistair Grant on 07775 365507, Email alistair.grant@bokehphotographic.co.uk or click Booking Enquiries if you have any questions or would like to make a booking.

   
     

bokeh: "the aesthetic quality of the blur produced in the out-of-focus parts of an image produced by a lens"


Alistair Grant (bokeh photographic) –Cambridge, St Ives, St Neots & Huntingdon Freelance Photographer providing Food & Drink Photography, Food Photography, Drink Photography, Product Photography, Packshot Photography, Pack Shot Photography, Commercial Photography, Restaurant Photography, Culinary Photography, Catering Photography, Industrial Photography, Agricultural Photography, Farming Photography, Editorial Photography, Feature Photography, Advertising Photography, Event Photography, Conference Photography, Corporate Photography, Business Photography, Portrait Photography, PR Photography, Wedding Photography, Property Photography, Architectural Photography, School Photography and Photography Training Courses in Cambridge, London, Huntingdon, St. Ives, Ramsey, St. Neots, Peterborough, Bedford, Stamford, Newmarket, Sawtry, Alconbury Weston, Brampton, Hartford, Warboys, Houghton, Wyton, Godmanchester, Hilton, Hemingford Grey, Hemingford Abbots, Fenstanton, Whittesley, Yaxley, Needingworth, Somersham, Chatteris, Ely, Bar Hill, Grafham and Buckden.

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bokeh photographic - Alistair Grant | Freelance Photography - Food & Drink Photography - Photography Training | Cambridge - London - UK | Tel: 07775 365507