Puerto Banus is not known for its modesty. It is a pretty bling place crawling with Ferraris and Lamborghinis, and the port always has a fairly overwhelming haul of outrageous luxury yachts in its moorings.
You can really start to feel sick of the excess, but you know you are dealing with a really sick mind when you find this for sale:
Yes, that’s right – for the brat who has every conceivable thing already, why not shock even Mammon with your vulgarity and buy her a diamante encrusted Hannah Montana Wii for a grand. Shiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiit. This was on sale in El Corte Ingles – a mall packed with unsellable miles of racks of expensive clothing – it makes you gag and boggle (aka baggling).
The consumer culture is massive on the Costa del Sol. Mind there are some upsides, namely in terms of food. The supermarket, Hipercor, puts even Whole Foods to shame (well, not in the fresh meat section). Have a look at the outrageous Iberico Ham department (!!), fresh seafood counters and the good 40m of cheese counterage. Foodies could spend some time here…
These pictures were all taken on a Rolleiflex medium format twin lens reflex. The camera is a beautiful piece of German design, with stunning attention to detail and build quality. On the down side you only get a dozen (big and gorgeous) exposures per roll, and it is not cheap. On the up side the quality of the originals surpasses that of the best £2000 SLRs by Nikon and Canon. Not bad for something that looks like it belongs in a Film Noir.
The camera used to belong to my grandfather, and he took it all over Europe taking pictures of architecture, design, and generally anything interesting enough to be used his books on visual education. I am glad I can still put it to good use! Believe it or not, the TLR is designed to be light and compact- and it is surprisingly so, especially for a medium format camera.
Nowadays medium format is mainly used for studio work, where its ultra-high resolution makes it suitable for billboard size enlargements (there medium-format digital backs – they cost £50k). It is also very popular in lomography, where the fun is in marvelling at the weird effects of low-quality cameras with plastic lenses on the big squares of film.
I really loved the restriction of having so few exposures to play with. I am so used to indulgence of free photos in the digital format it is too easy to forget the pleasure of being made to wait and really read a situation. How rewarding it is to sit and wait with your finger poised above the shutter release for ten minutes before taking the one, precious exposure! It teaches you to really value every shot, to use all your skills of predicting human behaviour to catch the right moment, to read light and motion with your eye-brain and not rely on the thinking skills of a chip.
If I had to take a single shot of the most beautiful subject I would ever see, I would take it on this beautiful Rollei TLR.