After our previous little chat with Samantha of FEElim Photography, we just couldn't wait to learn more about her pre-nuptial photography experience using our Petzval Art Lens, and were eager for some tips on how to use the lens for a prenup shoot. Read on for our interview with Samantha and of course, get hold on her amazing photography along with a few pre-wedding shots!
Name: Samantha Ann Francis
How did you get into photography and pre-wedding photography?
I started playing around with a Hello Kitty film camera at the age of 11 and as all things go, I started to take an interest in all sorts of film photography; 35mm, medium format, instant film. Two years ago, I did a few couple photo shoots for my friends and they fancied how the photos had a special feel to it as opposed to digitally-shot photos. That’s how people started coming to me for analogue-style pre-wedding and wedding photography.
What is your favourite theme for pre-wedding photography?
There’s really no particular theme. Each couple comes to me with a love story unlike any other, and I’m just here as their storyteller. Some met as school mates, some were childhood sweethearts, and a few had endured a long distance relationship. Their story usually dictates the location and mood of the shoot. It’s always wonderful to see how far these pairs of lovers have come together.
Please share your most memorable experience in pre-wedding photography.
Once, we sneaked into an unlocked lecture theatre in Singapore Poly to shoot and I climbed onto the lecturer’s desk for a better vantage point….please forgive me hahaha.
What attracted you to the Petzval Art Lens in the first place?
As a lover of all things vintage-looking, I was first drawn to the beautiful brass body of the Petzval lens. I imagine it’d look great on the boring Canon body I was using.
And why did you decide to try it out?
The signature swirly bokeh was something I wanted to incorporate into my photos and I thought it’d add to the film look of my photography.
What do you think of the lens now?
It’s stunningly sharp when you get the focus right but also rather frustrating when you don’t. Its manual focusing takes time for one to master. The lens is sturdy but a little too heavy for daily use.
What is the ideal condition (weather, place, etc) for using the Petzval Art Lens?
Personally, the golden hour light at dawn or dusk hours coupled with a large aperture (f2.2) on the Petzval gives me the best results. Also, spacious nature backdrops like a forest setting or even a field, can accentuate the swirl of the bokeh. Think patterned and textured, yet ‘clean’ back grounds.
Any suggestion or tips for using the Petzval Lens?
Before you click the shutter, take some time to shuffle back and forth to achieve the sharpest point of focus. With manual focus, you can’t be impatient. If it’s a little blurred, it’s okay too!
Do you use any special filter or equipment to get your ideal results?
I’ve yet to experiment with a filter but using a tripod does help to eliminate all sorts of shakes when you’re using the Petzval for low-light portraits.
Is there anything you want to try with the Petzval Lens in the future?
I’d love to custom-make some aperture plates! And l’ll let you in on something….I’ve tried shooting on the Petzval without any aperture plates (accidentally) and it turned out strangely fine.
Thank you so much Samantha for taking time to tell us more about pre-wedding photography and for sharing tips on how to use the Petzval Art Lens.