There is no question as to how the Horizon Perfekt can render a view of a mountain range or sea front breathtaking; that wide panorama and quality lens are proven capable of delivering spectacular scenery. Just put the Horizon Perfekt in front of you, choose the right settings and voila! You’ve got a surefire travelogue-worthy shot. But what about portraits or group photos? Shooting with a Horizon camera entails more creativity and requires more technique, but can be rewarding once you see the results.
My first attempt at shooting with the Horizon Perfekt was not successful. Using the rewind knob to select either the fast or slow shutter speeds for me was confusing. Many instances I thought I was using fast shutter speeds when in fact I had been using the slow ones, and vice versa. What’s worse is that the film got cut while inside the camera and had to be manually removed and taped together, rendering a portion exposed.
This second attempt, however, is way more successful than the first. I scheduled an afternoon shoot with my kids, and the weather was just right. A blue sky decorated with soft white clouds served as our background and the quiet rooftop of a six-story building was our venue for the shoot. Although my pictures are far from perfect, I learned a few things, and I’d like to share them with you.
Don’t be afraid of negative space.
That’s a wide panorama you need to fill, but you don’t really have to fill all of it especially if youre shooting only one to three people. Negative space can actually add an artistic or scenic touch to your photo, depending on what you have in your background.
Not all your subjects need to be at the same distance from the camera.
When you go to a portrait studio and ask to be photographed as a group, it is most likely that the photographer will ask all of you to stay in the middle ground, in an intimate, ’cuddling’ type of pose. When taking pictures with a Horizon Perfekt, however, you can deviate from tradition and position your subjects differently. This will add a sense of depth to your pictures.
They don’t need to be hugging one another all the time, either.
Your subjects can be a feet or two away from one another when you frame your shot.
Don’t place your subject too close to the camera, or move at least one meter away.
While it is advisable for you to place your subjects at different distances, don’t place any of them too close, or move at least one meter away before you take a picture. As you may already know the built-in lens id a fixed lens and has no distance scale. Shooting too close to the subject will render his face blurred and out of focus.
Stiff, rehearsed poses aren’t always necessary.
Try taking candid shots and allow your subjects to move about. Let them enjoy, and decide which ‘candid moments’ to capture. Shoot.
Make the most out of the view.
Unless you’re shooting maybe a dozen people with the Horizon Perfekt, chances are you won’t be filling up the entire frame. So please, find an interesting background that will make use of all that space.
Props are optional and can add a spark of fun.
Since there is a lot of space, you can use some props when appropriate. Just make sure the props don’t take too much attention away from your subjects.
It’s okay to shoot vertical panoramas.
While horizons are horizontal, as a camera you can rotate it 90 degrees and use your creativity to take an unusual image.
Don’t deviate too much from the ideal shutter and aperture settings settings if you know you’ve got it right.
The Horizon Perfekt allows you to choose your aperture and shutter speed settings. If you were able to use a light meter or its substitute and you’re certain you’ve hit the correct settings, don’t deviate too much if you many crisp and sharp photos. If you are to alter the settings and experiment, just make sure you don’t go too extreme; one stop bigger or one speed faster is enough.
Take the photos from this album as an example. If I’d stuck to the prescribed settings, my other pictures would not have been overexposed!
Keep your fingers away from the face of the camera.
Remember that the Horizon Perfekt covers much width once its shutter is released. Keep your fingers out of the way if you don’t want them on what could have been a fantastic photo.