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  • Writer's pictureNicholson Feldman

Finding "Truth," A Shoot with the Minolta Weathermatic Dual 35... and a Z6.

Falling on a fall breeze was a Music Video shoot for Truth the Bull IV, containing a deep message about the self. I was not involved in that shoot, but covered the faces featured in the film.

The fact is that I have become invested in portraiture of local Atlanta artists, and where better to capture those faces than ground zero? Lets see how that went:

I arrived on set on a late afternoon in September, the fall breeze gave way to cool overcast skies and a tasteful color pallet on the east side of Cobb County.

I found an amateur photographer among the artists before me, wielding a simple Nikon D3400 with a kit lens. Curious, I asked that poor boy why he chose Nikon. After hearing his poorly constructed opinion on how Nikon seems more customizable to him, I began speaking about vintage lenses, mirrorless full frame equivalency, and my collection of medium format behemoths. He walked away startled, put his camera aside for the evening, and avoided me for the remainder of the night.

This is why I have a hard time making friends.

That aside, I had recently picked up a Minolta Weathermatic Dual 35 for a shoot later that week, so I decided to run a roll of film through that before switching to digital for the day.

I opened the back of the camera to reveal a slightly fishy stench that made me think back to the time I had a fish taco at a sub-par Tex-Mex restaurant in Buckhead. It is known to be an underwater camera, for sure, but this smell was an unwelcome one, one in which traveled all the way from Japan's eBay ring to invade my sinuses.

Once I finished snorting the inside of this rusty camera like a coke addict getting his last fix, I turned to the group of artists around me, unaware of what atrocities I had just committed. I loaded my film, closed the door, and turned that bad boy on.

I shot the 36 exposures of 400TX fairly quickly, trying to make the most of it before the sun went down too much, and proceeded to whip out my Nikon Z6 for the remainder of the shoot.

I found myself shooting less BTS for the group that had asked me to come out in the first place, and instead shot portraits of the people around me.

Towards sundown, the tree-line behind us began to change. It was too dry out to be a fog rolling in, and yet didn't smell like smoke from a nearby fire for it to be smoke. Whatever it was, it provided me with an aesthetic worth chasing. I chased it like a dog who noticed his tail for the first time.

Light began fading, and as I snapped my new portfolio shots that would encourage me to rebrand for the third time this year, I had to kick my ISO up and my Aperture down.

I began showing images to the artists as I shot, something I typically stray away from. I like to be able to edit before my work is shown, mainly because I don't want to have to reveal my camera every time I take a photo. That is the main reason I shoot film on professional jobs, aside from charging a premium for that grainy look.

Everybody was really kind on that set, and I managed to capture some images I'm actually very proud of, so if you're a fellow photographer reading this, go shoot some set photography. It's well worth the one hour drive there and then back.

And if you're a client or company stalking my page before hiring me, please hire me. I'm a hoot, and I can take pretty pictures, sometimes.

Nicholson Feldman

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