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Thread: Pictures from a P20

  1. #1
    Samuel Axelsson
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    Pictures from a P20

    Hi all,
    I wanted to share with you some of my recent pictures taken with a Phase One P20 and a Hasselblad 503CW.

    This is actually my fourth DB. I've had a Lightphase 6 mpx, an H20, a P21 and a P20 that is what I'm using now.
    I've been reading with interest the discussions about how versatile a DB is, about "toys" we buy etc...
    My opinion is this: We don't buy DB for fun or fancy, because we are rich (I'm not). For me is not only a question about quality, the edge is there without doubt. It's about the essence of photography, how we interact with our tools, how the camera feels in my hands, and how the prints look.
    I've used the 503CW inside the most dense forest of Sweden, at home with very little light or in the middle of the streets surrounded by people, always with the feeling that I'm doing what I love most and that I'm using the best tool I can afford to achieve my visions.
    If you're comfortable with the camera in your hands, you can do almost everything with it .
    Sincererly, I don't use a 35mm, not because it wouldn't be possible to work with it, it's only that i doesn't feel like me. It may sound stupid but it's the way I feel. My 1Ds was sold almost unused, my 350D has been in the box about 6 months just used for eBay sells....

    I think Medium format has a lot of things that has nothing to do with pixel count. And everyone denying the qualities of a MF camera just because of silly pixel comparisons should give it a try and experience it personally. It if doesn't click, well it doesn't. No more excuses needed.

    But for me... just the feeling of walking downtown listening to a good jazz record with my 503CW in my hands...

    Anyway, here goes some pictures, I'll add a few more later:
    Last edited by Samuel Axelsson; 15th September 2008 at 08:01.

  2. #2
    Samuel Axelsson
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    Re: Pictures from a P20

    Round two...
    Last edited by Samuel Axelsson; 15th September 2008 at 08:01.

  3. #3
    Samuel Axelsson
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    Re: Pictures from a P20

    Round three...
    Last edited by Samuel Axelsson; 15th September 2008 at 08:01.

  4. #4
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    Re: Pictures from a P20

    Some real beauties here.
    The boy with the bike on the steps, and the first woman with child are my favorites. The DR and depth of color are outstanding.

    I wish you would give them some space from each other for viewing.

    Thanks for showing,

    Mitchell

  5. #5
    Senior Member emmawest72's Avatar
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    Re: Pictures from a P20

    Very nice to see some real world MFDB pics from Sweden.


    Cheers
    Wilhelm ( svensk ocksa)

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    Subscriber Member KurtKamka's Avatar
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    Re: Pictures from a P20

    Thanks for sharing these, Samuel. It's great to see how others are using the medium.

    Kurt

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    Re: Pictures from a P20

    That red flower shot is amazing...strong images from a person who loves his photography! I admire your sentiments you speak for all amateur enthusiasts who do this for the love of seeing and making their own images.

    Cheers
    Pete

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    Re: Pictures from a P20

    Very nice shots - very much like your comments as well. Well said.

    If you get the chance, i'd like to hear your thoughts on the P20. It's a MFDB I've been considering and you normally don't see much text about it.

  9. #9
    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Pictures from a P20

    Samuel this are great. The P21 and P20 are some really nice backs. As i just got the P25 Plus , I am looking at some backup back down the road here and these could be good options for me to pick up a non plus for backup
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

    www.guymancusophotography.com

  10. #10
    Subscriber Member TRSmith's Avatar
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    Re: Pictures from a P20

    Some beautiful images there. Wonderful to see examples from someone who truly loves the format. It shows. There have always been true devotees to every format and while it may seem unlikely that a modern digital camera would inspire the same passion as, for example, the old Rollie twin lens, they obviously do. At least in your case.

    And your points about how the camera feels and how you feel while using it are also important. It's a subtle thing that has a profound impact on the outcome. Struggling with a piece of equipment as opposed to dancing gracefully with it will show up in the final images you produce. I imagine it's different for everyone. I have always loved shooting a view camera but felt very uncomfortable looking down into the waist-level viewfinder of a Hasselblad. Different strokes as they say.

    Thanks for sharing them.

    Tim

  11. #11
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    Re: Pictures from a P20

    Samuel, Is that Uppsala by any chance in the 1st and 2nd set?

    Almost no need to repeat that the images are gorgeous...

  12. #12
    Samuel Axelsson
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    Re: Pictures from a P20

    Thank you all for the comments!

    I'll try to answer your questions. Where to start...
    Well, the pictures are taken in Örebro, about 200 Km från Upsala.
    I know they are a little bit difficult to see so clese to each other. I tried to have a little more space between them but it isn't an option when you upload the files. I supose I'll add external links with spacen in between next time.

    About the P20: I worked very intensively with a P21 last year. I started to do a lot of "paid job"(the first woman picture is a client job) , so at the same time I started my business i went totally digital. Sometimes I need to deliver pictures over a night. No too much patience in the modern world.
    I sold my Imacon, put beside my Contax 645 and my 503CW and switched to a H2 with a P21. Actually, I wanted a P21 for Mamiya, I had a H1 before and sold it because I never felt comfortable with it, but the Mamiya refit was very difficult to get. It was almost three months delayed and I had an exhibition and a calendar to do so I ended up with an H again.

    I like the P21 a lot, gorgeous files and color. I was amazed by the quality of the prints and everything but the camera was not "me" as expected. Never liked the H series but I admit, never had a problem with it and it's a workhorse. But never felt right...

    The thing is, I had some interesting conversations with Örebro's Uiversity. They were very interested in my ideas and wanted work with me as a researcher for them. They know I work a lot with the relationships between sound and image and they (as well as me) were very excited about the project and doing a big exhibition at the end of it. This would give me the opportunity of working with photography and sound together full time.
    This will probably start next year so all the ideas and planning started to grow in my mind instantly, as well as the feeling of having the wrong equipment.

    So I decided to go back to my 503CW and change the P21 for a P20. The squared sensor is great for my needs and the fact that no back rotation is needed is a plus, specially if you work a lot outside or with portraits. Just concentrate on the subject...

    So the change to a 503CW is a big plus if we talk money and the image quality? Well, the P21 is certainly much cleaner at high ISO, but I find the color in the P20 more natural. I find usable from iso 50 to 800, but 800 need more processing than when using a P21.
    The H2 is sharper but but the bokeh is not as smooth as in the Zeiss files.

    I find the P20 a great back. Good price and outstanding IQ. The downside could be the wide angle side, not so wide but can be fixed with a little extra work stitching.

    This image hasn't been processed so it needs a bit of distortion and perspective work, but you get the idea:



    I'll probably need more resolution in the future. I was considering the P25 too, but beside the price (very expensive in Europe) I liked the idea of not rotating the back.
    I strongly recommend the Phase backs and a "non +" is a great value too. I don't really see better high noise in the + backs. They have great long exposure capability and a much better screen, but the IQ is very similar.

    The good point of having a non + refit is the the price is so right that next year I could invest in a new system and still keep the P20.

    Sorry for the long post and thank you again

    /Samuel
    Last edited by Samuel Axelsson; 29th May 2008 at 14:27.

  13. #13
    Senior Member Graham Mitchell's Avatar
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    Re: Pictures from a P20

    Jag har varit i Örebro
    Thanks for some lovely images.

  14. #14
    Samuel Axelsson
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    Re: Pictures from a P20

    Quote Originally Posted by foto-z View Post
    Jag har varit i Örebro
    Thanks for some lovely images.
    Thank's! I have been is Tallinn once! Wonderful place.
    Great swedish by the way.

  15. #15
    Super Duper
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    Re: Pictures from a P20

    Beautiful, beautiful images. Just rich with beauty and depth. You have a good eye my friend.

    I cannot wait to get back to the 503CW and CFV back that I am waiting patiently for. Just pure enjoyment of making photographs. My favorite camera of all time ... because it is timeless.

  16. #16
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    Re: Pictures from a P20

    Excellent commentary (and sample pic) - Thanks Samuel.
    As an experiment to see how I'd take to the square format have been cropping my 1Ds2 files to (I'm rounding) 14x14" square - really starting to like it for certain work (not a big landscape shooter).

  17. #17
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    Re: Pictures from a P20

    Always a pleasure to share someone's passion...

  18. #18
    Samuel Axelsson
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    Re: Pictures from a P20

    Hi again,
    I had a session on a wet, jumping boat today. Too hard to shoot water surfing with a Hasselblad actually . I admit, I used my Canon together with that 503CW. Horses for courses they say...
    Sorry I can't post samples of the session. The pictures are for a book and they can't be published jet. It's interesting to see how different the two system react to extreme sunlight like we had today... huge difference when post processing.
    But I had a little time for a walk, here are a couple of shoots.

    Thank's
    Samuel
    Last edited by Samuel Axelsson; 15th September 2008 at 08:01.

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