I want a Hasselblad 203FE but I don’t need one

I’ve been feeling lazy lately and so have been preferring cameras with some form of automatic exposure. This has left my beloved Hasselblads in a lurch. I have a 500C/M for more studied, careful shots and a 503CXi which I save for use with flash due to its TTL metering capability. Still, I’ve only shot a handful of rolls in either camera so far this year, and that’s a shame.

What I’d like is to find a way to make shooting the Hasselblads easier. You know what would do that? A 203FE!

A 203FE would be a significant investment, because I’d also want an FE lens or two and some ECC-12 backs.

I don’t need any of these things. Even I’m smart enough to know that just adding aperture-priority auto exposure isn’t going to make me shoot more. That’s the goal, right?

Still, I could sell the 503CXi and that would get me part of the way there. Hmmm.

When thinking of my minimal viable film kit, the Hasselblad(s) is always on the list. I love everything about them. But wouldn’t it be cool if they were easier to use? Wouldn’t it!?

Cropping film images

I used to subscribe to the idea that cropping film images was cheating and made the image less “pure”. This was especially true when using the Hasselblad because its frame lines have those famous notches, so not only was I proving that I had planned the shot perfectly, but also that I had done it with a Hasselblad!

Pickup for sale (2010)
Field (2010)
Katie (2016)
Jessica at photoshoot (2013)

What nonsense.

Worrying about showing the frame lines took a lot of the fun out of taking photos. These days I crop at will, without regard for the “purity of the shot”. It’s better this way.

A couple from the Hasselblad

I haven’t been shooting much film this year, so I pulled the Hasselblads out of the closet and shot a roll at my parents’ on Easter. Just some quick, hand-held outdoor portraits.

Gail. (Hasselblad 500C/M. Zeiss Sonnar 150mm f4. Tri-X in HC-110)
Mom. (Hasselblad 500C/M. Zeiss Sonnar 150mm f4. Tri-X in HC-110)