As you’ve probably noticed, we’ve recently been talking a lot about the Impossible Project and polaroid cameras, so for today’s Film Friday, I thought I’d switch gears and introduce my new toy, a Minolta Autocord. This medium format twin lens reflex (TLR) camera was gifted to me for my birthday, and I wanted to share some of the very first roll of 120 film with you all. Upon doing a little research, I would date this camera back to around 1965 or 1966. Another batteryless wonder! Compared to my Hasselblad, this camera is a breeze to load and so much lighter and more compact for transport. A cool thing about this camera is that the f stop and shutter speed dials are smooth, so you don’t have to stop and settle on f4 then f5.6, you can slide somewhere in between. It also does not have a mirror so there is no worry about mirror vibration, making it easier to shoot at lower shutter speeds without getting as much shakiness in your images.
I was relieved to find that my first roll was fruitful because the shutter makes such a small noise compared to my other medium format cameras that I thought it might be broken! Another interesting feature of which to be aware is that the lens you view through is not the same lens the camera will take the photo through. “Twin lens” denotes the utilization of two lenses, and the “taking” lens is below the “viewing” lens, so if there is something obstructing the taking lens, say a napkin on a table, blades of grass, or your fingers, you wouldn’t know it by looking through the viewfinder! It will take some getting used to, but I think this camera and I will become fast friends. As someone who always needs to be wrapping my brain around a new challenge, I was ready for something different, and I’m excited for the potential.
Any questions about medium format photography? I’d be happy to try and answer!
-Cara of CaraRosePhotos