Lucky lucky bastards. That was the subject of the email I got from Online Manager Maarten a couple of weeks ago. So, what was that mail about? Me and a few other Lomographers from The Netherlands were chosen to be the very first in our little country to take the new Belair X 6-12 for a test drive. Hell yeah!
After spending a few weeks waiting for the mailman to arrive, the day had finally come: the Belair was in da house! The timing could’ve been better though: I was feeling a bit under the weather and had been spending the entire week on my couch covered with a fleece blanket. I couldn’t bring myself to load a roll, let alone go outside to shoot.
A couple of days later I finally felt fit enough to go and act like a tourist in my own neighbourhood and I took the Belair for a walk in the Julianapark. Because it was a cloudy day, I loaded up my new sweetheart with some 400 ISO black & white film, dropped in the 6×12 mask and started shooting some panoramas!
If you’re used to 120 film, loading the Belair is a piece of cake. Once the camera is folded in, although it’s wide, it’s pretty easy to put in my bag.
Folded out, however, the camera is quite big. I like carrying my camera in one hand when I’m out shooting, but the Belair is too big to be be held comfortably like that (especially when you have small hands like me). A neckstrap would be perfect, but unfortunately, the camera doesn’t come with one. This is quite a shame actually, because this is one camera you definitely want to show off hanging around your neck!
With my small hands, it also takes a while to find that perfect shooting position, but as soon as I have a firm grasp on the Belair, the fun begins. The shutter has a nice click to it and the camera advances smoothly. In less then fifteen minutes I’ve finished my roll – that’s what you get when you can only take six shots.
Here are the results:
Okay, some are a bit out of focus (maybe I should’ve waited until I was 100% better, or 400 ISO just didn’t cut it in this overcast weather), but I love love love the panoramas! I almost regret using the 6×6 mask for my new roll.
I should be doing a lot more shooting and experimenting before I can really give a good opinion on the Belair, but for now I’m pretty happy with my new toy. The panorama function is especially nice, and I’ll probably be using that one the most, although I won’t forget about the 6×6 and 6×9 masks. Keep on checking my LomoHome for more Belair shots and the review section for more of thoughts.