Astrid II

I don’t know exactly when and where I saw portraits taken on large format for the first time, but I remember I was deeply impressed by the beautiful tonality, the smooth gradation and the shallow depth of field. Now, after getting comfortable shooting medium format, I thought it is time for me to give it a try.
I decided for a Graflex Speed Graphic with a Aero Ektar 2,5/178 mm lens. Using f/2,5 with 4×5″ sheets, it’s like having a f/0,65 lens when shooting 35mm, at least with respect to DOF. But the really cool thing is that you can get very creative with this shallow focus by customizing its location using the tilt and swing capabilities of the camera. Or you can use them the “right” way, such as getting the subjects eyes back into perfect focus when his or her head is turned sideways.
For my first portraits, I would need a very patient and cooperative model, I thought. Someone who doesn’t wiggle between focusing or gets impatient when things take ages. I immediately thought of Astrid who I worked with before. And I was very happy when she agreed to visit me at my place.
We started with a few polaroids, or better said Fuji instant films, but most of the time the surroundings and light were not suitable for color. As negatives I had five holders filled with two sheets of Kodak TriX 320 each, resulting in ten shots in total. I exposed at ISO 200 and developed in Xtol 1:1 for 10,5 minutes at 20°C.
And that’s it. My first portrait shooting on large format. I think we could have done worse:-)



  • thodoris markou10. März 2014 - 19:01

    great light, great frames, excellent work. keep it up with the Aero. ;-) ReplyCancel

  • David10. März 2014 - 21:59

    Absolute gorgeous image gallery. I know how tedious large format can be, but you did a great job – both of you!ReplyCancel

  • anh cuoi11. März 2014 - 8:30

    nice shot with great model,
    so difficut for lowkey shottingReplyCancel

  • Patricia11. März 2014 - 21:04

    I love number 5, the one with the big tilt. But the others are great as well. Fantastic bw. Thanks for sharing!ReplyCancel

  • yashasvi12. März 2014 - 14:58

    man these are amazingReplyCancel

  • Ken Thompson13. März 2014 - 23:54

    You must have the register of the film holders and ground glass really accurate on your camera and have a first class lupe. Congratulations on superb results.ReplyCancel

    • Florian Weiler14. März 2014 - 9:11

      Thanks Ken, I think I was lucky and found a good camera/lens combination :-) ReplyCancel

  • Bayron E Mejia21. März 2014 - 4:11

    Enjoying all the images but the 2 and 5 totally gets my eyes perhaps because they are in color and the way its compose.ReplyCancel


Being on vacation is always a great opportunity to take pictures, especially when using the time to travel through foreign lands. This September, Julia and I have been in Australia. What a great country! We started in Cairns and headed more or less south to Sydney in a 4WD Camper Van.
It was the first time after the “digital revolution” that I took a film camera with me. I decided for a Leica M7 with a 0,95/50 and a 1,4/24 lens. This should be sufficient for the one or another  portrait shooting, I thought. Altogether we stopped at three different locations where Julia put on her beautiful white dress she had just bought a few days before we left Germany. This is one of the moments when I realize how happy I am having such a gorgeous girl at my side while travelling around the world or at least some part of it.

  • Matthias Stiller7. Januar 2014 - 19:20

    It’s just wonderfull!!!
    I love the whole serie.ReplyCancel

  • Andrea Richey8. Januar 2014 - 9:10

    wunderbar <3ReplyCancel

  • Jonas8. Januar 2014 - 15:23

    Wow! Hammer StreckeReplyCancel

  • Alex22. Februar 2014 - 21:41

    Wow, absolut klasse. Jedes einzelne Bild ist auf seine Art und Weise faszinierend. Darf ich fragen wie du die 35mm Negative scannst?ReplyCancel

    • Florian Weiler9. März 2014 - 20:37

      Danke :-)
      Ich scanne alle meine Bilder mit einem Epson V750pro (35mm bei 3200dpi) und bin mit den Ergebnisse stets sehr zufrieden.ReplyCancel


When I first saw Astrid’s portfolio, I was quite unsure if she would fit my kind of photography. Her sedcard was a mixture of a few simple fashion shots and rather experimental portraits. But we had a very nice first contact and so I decided to give it a try. We started with a few digital shots in my studio and I was immediately impressed how gorgeously her look appeared on the screen. I quickly changed to film, grabbed my cameras and headed with her for a nearby lake.
As I mentioned in my previous post, I sometimes like to play around with a bunch of gear. This time it was a 2,8/165 attached to my Pentax 67, a noctilux 0,95/50 with a Leica M7 and the quite bulky R 2/180 with a Leica R7 camera. I am in the lucky position that I can easily borrow Leica equipment when I like to. And of course, I use this opportunity quite often.
I never shot with the R 2/180 before and I was pretty curious how this lens would perform, especially for close up portraits and particularly regarding depth of field. I must admit that I am a big fan of small DOF and I almost exclusively use my lenses wide opened. But I don’t want to talk too much about equipment and rather show you some results. I hope you enjoy.

  • Stephen S.14. Dezember 2013 - 22:26

    Just found your blog and I love it. Your pictures are spectacular and this model is of exceptional beauty. Really inspiring!


  • Clément J.15. Dezember 2013 - 21:58

    Hi Florian! Your work is absolutely great. Nice sensual photos.
    I’m just wondering if you realy can shoot the noctilux wide open outdoor. The M7 never can be that fast. What film do you use? Do you use filters?ReplyCancel

    • Florian Weiler9. März 2014 - 20:37

      I always use a ND 0,9 on the nocti lens during daylight. With this filter I get the same speed as my Pentax 2.8/165 lens which I often use together with the Leica. So as long as I use the same film I can also use the same time settings on the cameras.
      Regarding film I often use Kodak Portra 160 during sunlight and I don’t worry too much overexposing the film with 1 or 2 stops.ReplyCancel

  • Andrea4. Januar 2014 - 8:43

    ….diese Serie ist für mich immer noch ein absolutes Highlight!ReplyCancel


Sometimes when I go out shooting I like to play around with a bunch of gear, i.e. different cameras, several lenses and, though very rarely, I’ll even take a flash with me. But more and more often I like to keep it plain and simple.
When I stepped into my backyard with Lana we were only accompanied by a Leica M7, a 0,95/50 and a few rolls of film. I love Kodak Portra and TriX, which I have used most of the time for my pictures.
As I’m living on an old mill ground, I don’t actually have to look far for interesting shooting locations. It’s really convenient just to pop out of the apartment, stroll from the rotten woodshed along the warehouse to the old granary and take one or the other image. That’s what we did on this afternoon.



A few days ago, I had my first portrait shooting exclusively on film. No digital backup, no polaroids, no whatsoever – just this little blackbox that gives you no feedback whether you are doing it right or screwing it up completely. More precisely, I took three cameras with me, a Pentax 67 with an 1:2.8/165, a Contax 645 with an 1:2/80 and a Leica M7 with an 1:0.95/50. As film I used Kodak Portra and TriX.
My gorgeous and very patient model Joanne and I just strolled through the fields near the place I’m living, stopping from time to time and taking pictures – always with wide opened aperture and solely with available light.
I decided to shoot on film more often when I realised how gorgeous and how finished the pictures look when coming out of the scanner. Not as sharp as digital, but always with a certain look and mood which I so often miss on my digitals. Sometimes I had tried to mimic this look, but was never really satisfied. Aside from that it also feels like cheating when you know that you can get it the “right” way. With film I also don’t have the desire to push the image quality to its limit. It’s like an apartment not being perfectly clean and tidy, but very cosy – just fine.
Anyway, this experience made me confident leaving my digitals at home when going out shooting just for fun:-)


  • André11. Dezember 2013 - 14:10

    Found your page via 500px and I have to say that your images are very impressive and full of atmosphere. In this post, image 3, 6 and the last one are just gorgeous. Thanks for sharing!ReplyCancel

  • HECTOR MONDACA13. Dezember 2013 - 14:30


  • Camilla14. Dezember 2013 - 20:09

    Schön, dass man hier nun auch Kommentare hinterlassen kann.
    Dann will ich mir die Gelegenheit gar nicht nehmen lassen und dir schreiben, wie absolut begeistert ich von deinem Portfolio bin. Jedes deiner Bilder ist auf seine Art und Weise ein absoluter Hingucker!ReplyCancel

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