Oct 28, 2009

Close encounter of the analog kind

Europalia, the largest cultural festival in Europe, dedicates its 40th anniversary edition to China. From October 2009 through February 2010, hundreds of breathtaking events will celebrate the diversity of Chinese culture. Our recent Belgiumdigital shooting day led us by the Tea Hose, one of the Europalia venues on Brussels' Mont des Arts. And there we saw the guy below...

How often do you run into a Cambo 4"x5" view camera on the busy streets of a Western capital city? With someone taking his time to carefully frame a shot, determining exposure the 'good old way', and then bringing out a cassette with a single sheet of color slide film? Needless to say that our bunch of digital shooters - quite a few of them never having shot roll film, or even film altogether - were stopped in their tracks and gathered around this Chinese photographer, fascinated by the moves and rites of operating a large format camera.

It must have been a strange, perhaps intimidating experience for our dear Chinese friend, suddenly being surrounded by some 40 DSLRs and becoming their primary photo target! I am not sure he realized at first what was happening there...

Even more remarkable: almost no one paid equal attention to the photographer's first assistant who, after all, was only using a Blad with a MF digital back... But the pair of assistants/guides/interpreters quietly observing from a distance in the back did seem to have a very good time!

Gear notes: D700, 24-70/2.8

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