This months LomoAmigo is Utku Öztürk, who has been passionate about photography for the last 10 years and recently had the chance to test out the New Petzval 85mm Art Lens. If you want to get to know Utku more and see the shots he captured with the New Petzval 85 keep on reading!
Name – Utku Öztürk
Location – İstanbul, Turkey
Camera – Canon 650D
Website – about.me/utkuozturk
Hi Utku! Can you introduce yourself to the Lomography community? How did your interest in photography began?
Hello, I’m 23 years old and studying Urban and Regional Planning in İstanbul Technical University. At the same time, I’m following every aspect of art all around. Photography has been at the center of all that for the last 10 years. As a kid, I used to test out every camera I could get my hands on and burn a lot of films and tapes, taking videos and photos. During I school I used to carry the compact digital camera we had with me all the time and I got it stolen. I was expecting a punishment but instead my family supported my passion for photography by getting me a DSLR camera and enrolled me to a photography course. From then on I couldn’t stop taking photos. After a few years, I met with Lomography. I started buying cheap second hand Russian cameras, getting them fixed and using expired films and began exploring now familiar photography from a totally unknown perspective. In a short period of time, film, analog cameras and dark rooms became an integral part of my life.
Recently you had the chance to try out the New Petzval 85mm Art Lens. How can you describe this experience?
I enjoyed it immensely. I had been following all the news about the New Petzval 85mm Art Lens since it was launched. Initially it took a little getting used to, but afterwards it was a joy to shoot with the lens and I started getting some very nice photos. It was also a very nice social experience. Since the lens has a very interesting design, I got to talk with different photographers and people who are interested in photography. People who saw the lens couldn’t keep themselves from coming over and starting to chat. I probably added some new Petzval lovers to your community.
Can you tell us about the photos you took with the New Petzval 85 Art Lens?
I got to practice a lot of portraits. When I wasn’t sure what to shoot, my friends came to my help and offered to model for me. Some of it was pre-planned where as others just happened with a random luck that took us to new places.
What is your favorite Petzval shot so far? Can you tell us the story behind it?
This is a tough question. It was a struggle for me to select only 10 loved photos to submit to the 175 Years of Petzval Legacy Competition. But I especially love the photo of my friends silhouette in a courtyard. Years ago, we discovered a place in Tophane. There was a building that led to a green courtyard, leading to more buildings that are only accessible through this courtyard, people living in one story buildings in this secluded area. We had been talking about the kinds of photos we could create here every time we walked by. While walking aimlessly, we found ourselves in front of the entryway and this time we did not postpone.
Did anything interesting happen while you were shooting?
I can say that every day I had the camera with me, something interesting happened. It all started on the first day. We failed to inform the school board when we decided to do a shoot on the rooftop. We didn’t see the need as we would only take a few photos and get down. We were moving very slowly in order to avoid an accident. When the guests of the hotel across from the school informed the deans assistant as “4-5 people are doing acrobatic moves on the roof”, we were faced with 5 very worried security guards.
Do you have any suggestions to people who are new to the New Petzval 85 Art Lens?
If they are not experienced in shooting with an 85mm analog lens as I am, they might find it easier to test it out with a DSLR first. We need an intricate background to show off the lenses characteristic bokeh effect. This can be easily achieved in a nature shoot. So I suggest they take their friends and get lost in the nature.
If you had the chance to take a photo of someone with the Petzval lens, who would it be, where and why?
When you that to me, like I have a magical wish, I can think of tones of names. People from Freddie Mercury to Aysel Gürel all passed through my mind. I couldn’t make up my mind, as I’m too greedy. But when I think on it, and try to simplify, I think I would like to work with Charlie Barker, whose style interested me recently. She has a cute but sick style, and I think Hong Kong would suit her the best.