You pick up a Hasselblad 500C for the first time, and if you know enough about the camera itself, and its maker, you feel the weight of history in its heft.
I know what Becca Farsace is talking about in this video as she describes using the Hasselblad 907X mirrorless V System camera with the CVF II 50C digital back.
To a new user, this strange camera, with its strange form factor may be something of a mystery. However, to me, the Hasselblad 500 system is something that takes me back to my childhood.
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My History With Hasselblad
With the well-used Hasselblad 500C that my father bought in 1995, came a book explaining its every working (not the user manual), lessons from the original owner on how to use it, and careful instructions on how to reset it, if it should lock up.
The Ritual of Using A Hasselblad Medium Format Camera
Using the Hasselblad 500C is a ritual. It involves careful loading up of the 120 film into the film back, then loading the back onto the camera, removing the plate that shields the film, and then finally carefully framing a photograph that you hope will be worthy of the effort.
Each roll of 120 film allowed you to take 12 photographs – each negative being 6cm x 6cm. This is massive compared to the size of a frame of 35mm film.
Not In A Hurry
Learning how to use a Hasselblad 500C takes time, as does taking a photograph with it. You check the film counter at the back, make sure the tensioning in the back, as well as the body, are matched, then you ensure that the slide from the back is removed before setting your exposure, focusing, framing your image, and depressing the shutter release button.
It isn’t a ‘fast’ camera, and that’s part of the charm.
I can confirm this. Becca got it right.
Bringing New Life To The V System
I was a child when that camera was purchased, and I never used it professionally since film photography had given way to digital imagery. However, the camera is still with my father, and these digital backs hold the promise of giving new life to Hasselblad V Series cameras. These cameras carry stories from the past with them, and digital backs will help you to keep creating new stories with them.
You can check out the camera on Amazon (aff.).
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Published: March 22, 2021 | Last Updated: August 12, 2022