The Lomography x Zenit New Petzval Lens is one fine (re)invention, and more photographers are sharing their Petzval photos to the rest of the world. Another Petzval artist has agreed to share his photos and insight to inspire all of you: David Marquis.
Hi David! Please tell us about yourself and what you do.
I’m an editor in the PR business. In my job, I write a lot and manage different projects such as books, magazines and events. But I also work a lot with layouts and pictures. Of course, there’s also a camera in my office, but it’s not that important for my job. But photography is one of my hobbies and I spend a lot of time taking pictures and visiting exhibitions of different photographers.
How and when did you get into photography?
When I was 13 years old, I wanted to have an SLR camera. I can’t exactly remember why. But it was more the technical side of photography that attracted me at this time. I got a Canon AE-1 as a gift and I started taking pictures and developing films. But only 10 years later I discovered the creative side of photography and tried to improve my skills. But you never learn to take a perfect picture. You only can become better by small steps and only if you work really hard on it.
What are your favorite cameras, accessories and/or film for taking photos?
In the last three years I’ve been mostly working with modern digital cameras like the Nikon D700 and the Nikon D4. But I also like classic cameras like the Nikon F3, the Leica M6, the Hasselblad 503CX or the Holga. When I shot film, I mostly use the Kodax Tri-X oder old slide film that I develop with the C-41 process.
How did you acquire the Lomography Petzval lens? Why did you decide to get one?
I bought my Petzval lens on Kickstarter. It was some kind of love at first sight. Some good friends used to do ambrotypes with old cameras from the 1860s. Those pictures are amazing. It’s great to have such a nice lens for my DSLRs. And I love 85mm-lenses so I didn’t hesitate to order one.
Can you recall what your first reaction was when you first received and opened the package? Please share if you do remember.
You guys did a great job. It comes in a nice box and with a nice leather bag. But that wasn’t that important to me: I wanted to take pictures. As soon as possible.
What is your favorite Petzval and camera set-up?
It works best on my D4. Ergonomics are very good with that heavy camera. It also looks great on my black Nikon Df, but the camera is a bit to small and to light, so it’s much harder to hold it with the right hand and focus it with the left hand. The D4 also has a great focus indicator that helps me to focus manually.
Please share with us your first experience with the new Petzval lens. Any difficulties or memorable incidents you experienced?
*Well… I take most of my pictures with f 1.4 and with this aperture I have to use the autofocus. And there’s isn’t autofocus if you use a Petzval. So it was rather difficult for me to focus accurately. And to be honest: The focus knob isn’t that easy to handle.
Please share with us your favorite photo so far amongst your Petzval shots. And tell us the story behind it.
It’s DAM_1533. There’s no big story. Andrea is a friend and I had photographed here before. I took the pictures in the old part of my hometown Berne. I like the dark corners of our historic town and I like available light photography and her expression in this picture is great.
What do you like most about the new Petzval Lens?
I don’t like the concept of those ultra-sharp pictures with very saturated colors, this “digital look”. The Petzval lens allows me to take pictures in a very classic look, not perfect but with a great mood and emotions and that’s what portrait photography is about.