Author name: John Feole

I am an amateur photographer living in North Carolina. By day, I am a radiologist who looks at a steady stream of even more black and white images. Although I do take digital images, the art of film photography remains my passion. I began shooting film in the 1970's and have experimented with 35mm, medium and large format film. I prefer Ilford products and love the nuance of their film and papers. Some of my favorite film cameras include the Rollei 35S, Nikon F3, Mamiya c330 TLR, Mamiya RB67 and the Graflex Crown. My current interest is an East German Exakta V 35mm camera which I am certain you will soon read about. I develop my film and scan and or print images in my darkroom. I remain a lifelong student of the art. My journey brought me to wildlife photography using a full frame Nikon d850. Many skills were learned. My current direction, however, has been at the other end of the spectrum, utilizing a Rollei 35S viewfinder in an attempt to learn the art of street photography. The freedom of zone focusing the hunt for the unexpected and joy of imperfection have taken deep root. I am building my portfolio on 500px where I am a contributor, if you would like to see more. I look forward to sharing more adventures with the 35mmc community!

The Rollei 35S as seen through a Nikon d850.

Rollei 35S “Art Machine” – My Early Experiences

The Rollei 35 may be the best secret of all. Introduced in 1966, this miniature 35mm film viewfinder camera is more than the sum of its beautifully engineered parts. With a little practice this camera can create a magical image and that is the reason I call it “The Art Machine”. This article covers my early experience with 5 rolls of Ilford Delta 400, a Rollei 35S camera and a few days around my daughter’s wedding.

Exakta VX Initial Experiences – A Camera for the 35mm Aficionado.

I stood at the cash register in my favorite camera store, waiting to pay for film. At my feet, in front of the counter was a carboard box containing several old cameras in various states. It reminded me of a box of kittens you might see with a sign that read “free to a good home.” Perhaps that was their clever ploy to elicit my sense of compassion for these seemingly neglected veterans. They were not free. On the other hand, you could buy one Leica M3 or one of these and 244 rolls of film for about the same cost. I decided to rescue one of the dusty, 70-year-old cameras and review my experience with it in this article. I reached into that box and pulled out an Exakta VX. And to be completely unscientific, I introduced a second variable: Ilford Ortho Plus, a film I have never used before.

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