Handheld Infrared at the Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix

This year at the PVGP, I loaded a roll of Rollei Infrared and rolled the dice with my Minoltaflex iii. This particular camera has a history… of mishaps and not working. However, I still pick it up and run it through the paces. Why? Handheld infrared.

The Minoltaflex iii has a bay i mount and Rollei made an infrared filter for this mount, which compensates for the focus shift from visible to infrared light. On a bright day, the shutterspeed can reach 1/50 (aperture 4-5.6+ ish ballpark) which is just fast enough to get good shots with a steady hand. Because this camera is a TLR, there is no fuss with putting on/removing the filter to focus/frame. The viewing lens is unaffected by the dark IR filter, which only covers the taking lens.

These shots exceeded my expectations in terms of detail. Would have been nice if it wasn’t a little hazy that day and the sky came out darker, but oh well. A lot of people that take pics at the show focus on the cars or a car or part of a car in a shot. I tried to capture more of the ‘show’ aspect and included spectators purposely in the frame for almost every shot. This made the pics come alive and added an emotional element, as opposed to the sterile single car shots.

Additionally, the extra resolution of the medium format film paired well with the landscape shots and the buildings in the distance of some pictures retained a lot of detail.

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