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Thursday, November 26, 2009

Street Photography with a TLR (Twin Lens Reflex) Camera

Recently I came across an article written by Chicago photographer John Maloof, in Flickr's HCSP (Hardcore Street Photography) Discussion column. In the article John said that he had purchased a giant lot of negatives (about 40,000) from a small auction house in Chicago. He discovered the work of French born street photographer, Vivian Maier. who passed away in April 2009. Vivian's body of work mainly featuring daily street scenes from the 1950s - 70s. John is gradually going through all the negatives and publishes Vivian's work in his blog site.

Vivian Maier, self portrait









Upon looking at Vivian's black and white street photos, I am truly inspired and feel the urge to hit the streets with my TLR camera. I've been doing street photography for almost 4 years, using varies 35mm cameras from a Point-n-Shoot, a Rangefinder to a film SLR and a dSLR. But I have never used a medium format TLR camera for street photography. Though I've used a plastic toy camera, Holga which requires 120 film, but the TLR experience is a totally different one. How strange it is that only after viewing Vivian Maier's work, do I realise there are more creative and fun ways of doing street photography. It certainly opens up new perspectives in viewing and taking fotos through the TLR lens.

Enough talks and words now. Time for some TLR actions on the streets this coming weekends. If you have similar TLR street photography experience to share with me and other blog readers, I would be happy to hear from you.