Small Town Morning
I’d been looking for a tidy Yashica TL Electro SLR for some months. The only ones on offer seemed to be more suitable for parts than for use or even decoration, so when this one appeared I grabbed it, along with a load of weird lenses and stuff I had to sell off promptly to maintain my domestic harmony. This one came with the Yashinon DS 50mm f/1.9 lens, one I’ve not seen very often, the camera usually having been sold with the f/1.7 attached. I have that lens on an earlier Yashica SLR and have found it up to the usual Yashinon standards, though I have a personal opinion that the Yashinon DS lenses aren’t quite as punchy as the earlier DX, and certainly not as well built.
I took the camera out very early one morning, along with a nice little DX 35mm f/2.8 lens, and took a stroll around one of our local towns. Not much was happening at 6.30 am, and I had the place pretty much to myself. The camera handled well, though I prefer the swinging needle metering of the TL Super to the diodes of the Electro; diodes are great if they’re telling you something, but just “up and down” doesn’t do a lot for me. And I still think Yashica got it wrong with the meter switch; as with the Spotmatics, I find the left-hand positioning awkward, compared to the right-hand position on the Prakticas. I find it much more natural to focus with the left, meter and shoot with the right. But overall it’s a nice solid camera with a really well-built feel; I was sorry to see it lacks the “mirror-up” feature of the TL Super and I don’t think it will be replacing that camera in my “favourites” list.
I’ll post a few pics. They were shot on Kodak Gold 200 instead of my usual Fuji, mainly because I found a couple of rolls in the back of the ‘fridge that had just gone out of date. They’re not great works of art, but you may be interested to see what a small New Zealand town looks like in the early dawn. I’ve straightened a few verticals and perspectives in Photoshop, mainly because I enjoy doing it and also because quite a few years spent doing architectural pics behind a 5×4 Sinar view camera engrains some hard-to-shake habits!
All text and images © 2011 Rick Drawbridge
About the author:
Rick is a New Zealand photographer who spends his spare time researching, restoring and reviewing old film cameras.
He will share his adventures in re-exploring the joy of using film cameras used by amateurs and professional photographers alike. His articles are not meant to be pixel peeping and nerdy technical reviews. They just should inspire you to explore the world of analog imaging and encourage the usage of analog equipment.
Have a look to all articles in his series “The Joy of Film Cameras“.