Monday, March 13, 2017

The Half-Frame Portrait Format, Olympus Pen EF

The Half-Frame Portrait Format 01
The Half-Frame Portrait Format 02
The Half-Frame Portrait Format 03
Olympus Pen EF, D.Zuiko f/3.5 28mm

The Half-Frame Portrait Format

Olympus Pen EF
'Getting to know the 3:4 image aspect ratio of half-frame portrait frame cameras - Part I'

I am dedicating this and other posts in this series to the 3:4 image aspect ratio, as photographed on the Olympus Pen EE-S, Pen EF, Pen FT and other half-frame format film cameras that I have or may collect along the way.

I have only one thing in mind when I started the assignment with the Olympus Pen EF - use the camera to shoot only in the portrait of vertical frame mode. Yes, no horizontals or landscape mode, only verticals in the 3:4 image aspect ratio.

The camera I will be using for this series is the Olympus Pen EF, which incidentally, is the last of the half-framed Pen Series cameras produced by Olympus. Fitted with a superb f/3.5 28mm lens, the EF is an all black model with white lettering. The design is further complemented with a flash unit powered by an AA battery.

The Half-Frame Portrait Format 04

A half-frame camera, also known as single-frame or split-frame, captures images at half the size (18x24mm) of a standard 35mm negative film (24x36mm). You can shoot twice as many pictures and get 72 exposures on a 36-exposure roll, 48 on a 24-exposure roll. Most half-frame cameras are manufactured with a vertical film framing setup, meaning that they shoot in a vertical (portrait) orientation as opposed to the horizontal (landscape) orientation of standard 35mm cameras.

The Half-Frame Portrait Format 05

Operating the camera, as a point-and-shoot, is equally easy and can be done one-handed. Metering is by the standard Selenium 'electric-eye' system with the red pop-up flag that locks the shutter in low light condition. With the Olympus EF, however, you can override this lock by activating the level to power the flash unit, cute.

The scanned images were post-processed on Olympus Viewer 3 (OV3), which includes cropping the doubled-scanned images into single images, and tweaked with edits including Auto Tone Correction, Brightness & Contrast, Gamma, Hue & Saturation, Sharpness & Blur, Unsharp Mask, and Noise Reduction.



Resource Links:
Lomography - 7 Charming Half-Frame Cameras
The Original Olympus Pen Half-Frame Camera

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