But there was one email I received right before my birthday from the folks over at Lomography. They were announcing the launch of the new Bel-Air X 6X12 medium format camera. Actually, it was more of a tease than an announcement, what with the bellows, the retro styling and the two interchangeable lenses... and the pre-order discount. Yes, they got me. They got me good.
It took about a month for me to receive the camera, but it was worth the wait.
The appeal of the Bel-Air X 6X12 lies in it's ability to shoot in three different formats: normal 6X6 medium format shots as well as 6X9 and panoramic 6X12.
I shot the first roll in the 6X12 panoramic format. I had wanted to use my favorite film --- Ilford Delta 100 --- but when I went to look for a roll, I couldn't find any. (It was hiding in my still unpacked luggage from a Thanksgiving trip...) So I went with a roll of expired Fugi and totally ignored with fact that it was E-6 process film --- slide film.
I went to my favorite tree across the street from the entrance to my neighborhood. In six quick exposures, I was done. As I was driving to the lab, I "saw" the E-6 label in my mind and cursed. It was not a problem... I just made sure they did not cut or mount the film after processing.
The images I got are not Pulitzer Prize winners by any stretch of the imagination. But I have a good idea of what I will get when I pull the Bel-Air out of my bag. I found my rolls of Ilford and am waiting for them to get back after a trip to the garden.