I have several photographic haunts – places I visit frequently when I put film into a new old camera. Especially when I find a camera to be challenging or not very enjoyable, I like to shoot familiar scenes because it’s easy.
This summer I added the Indianapolis Museum of Art’s gorgeous grounds to my haunt list. I took my Canon FT QL and my Minolta XG 1 there. The estate of Eli Lilly, who founded an important pharmaceuticals firm that is one of Indianapolis’s major employers, stands on the IMA grounds. This little footbridge is immediately south of the house. I shot it one bright but cloudy day with the Canon.
On another day when the sun was out, I shot the same scene with the Minolta. I probably stood a little closer to the bridge, as it’s a slightly narrower shot with a slightly wider lens. The Minolta wore a 45mm f/2 lens, compared to the 50mm f/1.8 lens on the Canon. Even though the Canon shot is very soft at the right edge (which I think is a fault in the lens or camera), I like the Canon shot better for the misty mood it sets.
I found the Minolta to be easier and more enjoyable to use, though. I preferred its aperture-priority shooting to the Canon’s stop-down, match-needle system. The Minolta was also much easier to handle, largely because it is smaller and lighter than the Canon. But the Minolta tended to overexpose a little bit in bright sunlight. In this photo of the bridge from a different angle, despite some adjustments in photo-editing software the foliage in the lower left corner remains a little blown out.