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Graphic design has been around since mankind discovered that images are an essential complement to words. Urban design may seem a more recent activity, but the essential components have been practised ever since we started to build and plant.

Modern pressures for both increased development and environmental stewardship strengthen the importance of communication between the designer and the client, the manager and the managed, public agencies and the general public, and the many professions involved in achieving sustainable development.

Good communication skills can establish early mutual understanding between participants in any project. This understanding can stimulate the generation of ideas that might otherwise be missed. Accurate representation of ideas can highlight their strengths and weaknesses.

Honest representation of the solution can help secure the agreement, commitment and enthusiasm of all involved, and establish realistic expectations of what a project can achieve.

Graphic images can communicate what may be impossible, or at least extremely long-winded, in words. Graphic design is therefore an essential component of the urban design process.The collaboration between graphic designers and the rest of the urban design team.

Urban design is about making place for people. It is concerned with how places function as well as how they look, bringing together issues of planning, transportation, architectural design, economics, landscape and engineering to create a vision for an area. Good urban design is essential to deliver places which are socially, environmentally and economically sustainable. It provides distinctive places that encourage investment and can attract a skilled workforce, therefore increasing the economic value of an area.

Image by DAN MOUNTFORD.

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Offset Printing is a widely used printing technique where the inked image is transferred (offset) from a plate first to a rubber blanket, then to the printing surface. When used in combination with the lithographic process, which is based on the repulsion of oil and water, the offset technique employs a flat (planographic) image carrier on which the image to be printed obtains ink from ink rollers, while the non-printing area attracts a film of water, keeping the nonprinting areas ink-free.

A printing technique whereby ink is spread on a metal plate with etched images, then transferred to an intermediary surface such as a rubber blanket, and finally applied to paper by pressing the paper against the intermediary surface. Most print shops use offset printing to produce large volumes of high-quality documents . Although the equipment and set-up costs are relatively high, the actual printing process is relatively inexpensive.

An offset lithography (also known as plantographic) printing, plates carry both the image and non-image areas on the same level (unlike letterpress where areas are raised to catch ink). The transfer of ink is controlled by an unlikely principle. The principle that oil and water don’t mix.

Image areas are photographically transferred to thin metal plates which are treated chemically to accept oil-based ink but repel water on the image areas. Conversely, non-image areas accept water but repel the oil-based ink. A plate first contacts rollers of a clean solution or water and then is inked by other rollers. The oil-based ink “sticks” to the image area. The inked image is then transferred from the plate to a rubber blanket. The rubber blanket then transfers the image onto the paper’s surface.

Because of the resilience of the rubber blanket, it’s possible to use offset lithography printing on a wide variety of surfaces and for large quantities. Both spot colors and CMYK colors can be used with this process.

Offset printing, also referred to as offset lithography, is a type of printing process used by virtually all large commercial printers. It is called offset , because the ink is not directly pressed onto the paper, but is distributed from a metal plate to a rubber mat where it is then set onto the paper.

Offset printing can be done on a web printing press, one that use huge rolls of continuously fed paper, or a sheet fed press that, as you would expect, uses sheets of paper. Both types of presses produce printed materials that can be cut to size after printing. Offset printing uses all of the latest technology in printing, including computers that aid in design. Computers are also used to generate instructions for the mixture of ink colors as well as their distribution to the paper.

Offset printing works because water and the inks used in the printing process do not mix. The images to be printed are created on the computer and then “burned” onto metal plates using a chemical developing process similar to photography. The metal plates are dampened with water which adheres to the areas without images. The ink is added next, one color at a time, where it sticks to the areas with images. The most modern systems use a direct-to-plate system in which the images are burned directly to the metal plates; the omission of a secondary step saves time and money.

The colors used in offset printing are usually Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black, represented with the letter K (CMYK). Note that K is used to represent black to ensure that there isn’t any confusion with blue. Different percentages of each of these four colors create virtually every color used in offset printing. There are color matching systems, such as the PANTONE system, that allows print buyers to see the color. The code for that color can be entered into the offset printer’s computer and it will calculate the percentages of each color to be used.

The technology behind offset printing allows large volumes of printing to be completed quickly and without any variations in ink distribution. The final printed materials produced through offset lithography also dry quickly, keeping the production process moving smoothly from the printing to the finish work of cutting and binding materials.

Offset printing, also called offset lithography, is a method of mass-production printing in which the images on metal plates are transferred (offset) to rubber blankets or rollers and then to the print media. The print media, usually paper, does not come into direct contact with the metal plates. This prolongs the life of the plates. In addition, the flexible rubber conforms readily to the print media surface, allowing the process to be used effectively on rough-surfaced media such as canvas, cloth or wood.

The main advantage of offset printing is its high and consistent image quality. The process can be used for small, medium or high-volume jobs. There are two types of offset printing machines in common use for publication today. In sheet-fed offset printing, individual pages of paper are fed into the machine. The pages can be pre-cut to the final publication size or trimmed after printing.

In web offset printing , larger, higher-speed machines are used. These are fed with large rolls of paper and the individual pages are separated and trimmed afterwards. Sheet-fed offset printing is popular for small and medium-sized fixed jobs such as limited-edition books. Web offset printing is more cost-effective for high-volume publications whose content changes often, such as metropolitan newspapers.

Advertising tactic helps organizations to focus their attention to complete resource utilization to enhance sales and win over their competitors. Every single corporation applies some type of advertising methods to preserve existing buyers, attract potential prospects and also to sustain and improve their reputation inside the market.

When designing an advertising program, 1st a marketing strategy is taken into consideration. The marketing program includes actions to be taken in order to attain success inside the implementation of the advertising tactic chosen. Large projects involve selection of distinct tactics at distinct levels. Generally a method comprises well-sketched tactics. They are meant to meet the really needs and lastly reach marketing objectives. Every single of the strategies has pre-calculated results because when a particular tactic is chosen at a certain level, its outcome becomes the objective of that specific level. If there is certainly an absence of a properly thought strategy in a marketing plan means it is supposedly lacking an excellent foundation. A reasonable advertising method ought to not only facilitate marketing goals, but also the action sequence of a campaign.

At regular time intervals the firm should analyze the marketing choice. This is certainly done using the aid of strategic models and the 3C’s model is deemed for this purpose. To calculate the company’s strategic position, Ansoff matrix is employed. The 3C’s model determines the factors, which leads to the success of an advertising campaign. There are 3 key parties involved in this model the corporation, the customer along with the competitors. The involvement of all the 3 key parties leads to positive results and this involvement is known as the 3C’s or strategic triangle.

The role of the corporation is to improve the strength of the enterprise in the success vital areas, when compared to that of the competitor. The customer and his interest form the basis of any method. The competitor also plays an important component. The competitor-based strategies are based on the functioning of business competitors like style and engineering, sales and servicing, and purchasing.

When creating a marketing plan depending on some specific techniques known as mix techniques are employed. 4P’s model is utilised to calculate regardless of whether the plan is sticking to the methods or not. The four Ps stand for product, price, location and promotion. Products are goods produced by the company on a huge scale for the exact purpose of selling them and earning profit. Price is the cash paid for a product by the customer.

The cost is based on several aspects like competition, market share, customer perception and item identity. Location where the product is sold can certainly be either physical store or store on the Online. It is also recognized as distribution channel. To create the customer knowledgeable about an item, the marketer does promotion. It involves marketing, public relation and point of sale.

There are different forms of advertising tactics based on some criteria. Challenger, Leader and Follower are forms of marketplace dominance methods. Marketplace dominance methods are utilised to dominate the market. Expense leadership, Market segmentation and Item differentiation are kinds of porter generic tactics. Porter generic techniques are built on strategic strength or competing abilities and strategic scope or marketplace penetration. Close followers, late follower and Pioneers are varieties of innovation tactics.

Innovation strategies are meant to trigger the rate of product development and model innovation. It assists the firm to incorporate most recent technologies. Intensification, Diversification, Vertical integration and Horizontal integration are varieties of growth tactics. Growth methods facilitate the growth of the organization. Marketing warfare tactics are conjunction of advertising techniques and military techniques.

A marketing strategy or a mix of them is chosen only after thorough marketplace analysis. A marketer need to often be ready to face any type of situations like if the technique is changed in the midsection, he must be able to perform an additional market analysis in order to pick the correct tactic, within a short period of time. This could be carried out quickly in the event you have knowledge.

Letterhead is often the first impression a person will have with your company. Creating a letterhead that is effective and unforgettable is important. You want a letterhead that has something that your competitor doesn’t have, be it a design or logo. While some companies use a cute style, consider the message you wish to portray. If you are operating a daycare center, a cute graphic with children could be appropriate. But if you are operating a financial firm, you might want to consider a professional logo.

Plan or design a graphic that will make your customer immediately think of you. 

Hire a professional artist or designer if you do not have artistic abilities or suitable software. Be sure that your design is what you want. If you prefer traditional and the designer likes something very modern, go with your choice and be sure she conforms to your wishes. If you are unhappy with your logo, you will be unhappy with your letterhead. Experiment with different colors for the logo and place it in various places on your letterhead until you find a location you like.

Choose one or two colors for your letterhead. Shades of the same color (such as black to gray) can add depth to your logo without confusing the reader’s eyes with too many colors.

Keep the logo simple and crisp-looking by not adding extra graphics. For example, if you are in a business that builds birdhouses, using no more than two strategically placed birdhouse graphics is sufficient. In many cases, one birdhouse could be more impressive than two or more.

Include all your company information on the letterhead. Your company name, address, phone and fax numbers, and an email and Internet site lets your customers know that you are a professional firm. The information also gives your customers easy access when they wish to contact you.

Decide if you want straight or italic text, or a mix of both. Be cautious when mixing styles so as not to have too many fonts or features. Too many styles can be confusing and perhaps negate the memorable effect you are trying to achieve.

Add a watermark that repeats your company’s name or logo. A watermark is a design added to the paper, usually at a slant. This is a good design for your second page letterhead.

Choose a paper stock that is heavy enough to be elegant, yet be compatible with your laser or ink jet printers. Find the color of paper stock that is well-matched with the color on your logo. A contrasting logo and paper stock can look elegant as long as the colors go together well.

Everyone has preferred colors choices and other colors that they simply just don’t like. How would you determine which colors will function for your business identity, and that will post the suitable message to your possible clients?

Built up various ways and methods for deciding successful color palettes. You may select colors for your corporate identity based on certain factors. You choose colors that excite you and you live with the logo and look at it often with emotion. Various colors have the tendency to be in common with your personality so your color palette will always relay to your possible clients about the way you work and who you really are.

You use your color palette for your business most especially if you are the sole proprietor of your business or if you are a consultant. So whatever you wear will strengthen your brand and will always be a business reminder to the people that you meet. There will be times if you are running a bigger business, you may include uniforms that reflect your logo design.

You may think about those you communicate within your industry or even the positive emotions that is emitted in your industry or select colors connected with those accordingly. For instance, the color red is good for a flower company as it is the color associated with roses but is not so good selection for a health care professional since it is associated with blood.

Color palettes that are eye-catching and consist of complementing or matching colors are more attractive in the eyes of your customers. If you make use of a limited color palette, with one or two colors in your printed materials, you will be able to save money. So you are advised to select colors for your logo that contrast one another. In this way, your materials may be designed using just a few colors, but they are still eye-catching and legible.

If your business has a high-energy, you may use clear, bright colors. Most likely than not, the emotion of the experience your customers have is reflected when they are working with you. If your business has complex services, you may select the complex colors like slate blue or maroon or sage green or just another muted tone relating your work intricacies.

If these guidelines are used, a strong color palette will be devised to be used for your business either online or in printed corporate communications. Remember that your color palette is a significant aspect of your brand identity, as it will be a factor to your credibility, visibility, and memorability.

Most typical amateur custom design look very simple, cheap and old. They are just made from simple color design printing, with typically just a handful of boring text and raw single-color graphics. If you don’t want your first business flyer to look like that, then you have come to the right place. it is time that you invested in some good sense with your custom design by reading up on how to make them truly modern looking. Below is a list of tips that should help you create truly modern custom design that you can be proud of.

Update your design software

Modern looking design require modern design software. So you should try to always invest in the best and new design applications that you can afford. Do not just use those simple word processing applications. Try to get those real modern design tools such as Microsoft Publisher or Adobe InDesign. These have the different templates, features and effects that can help you make a really professional looking and modern color design. Keep updating your software to its most recent version to make sure that you can make the best designs every time for printing.

Use full color high resolution images

Another important tip to create modern looking design is to always use images that are high quality. Try to dump the cheap and corny clip-art images of old, and use full color high resolution images of your own. You can either get real photographs for use in color design, or you can also create actual high resolution vector graphics from software like Adobe Illustrator. All these options can give you finely polished images for design printing, giving them that powerful, professional and modern look that most audiences expect today.

Use new and updated fonts

You may not believe this, but fonts play a factor in creating modern design. If you look at the different popular fonts for the last few decades, you will discover that they have changed slightly. While Times New Roman and Arial might be the rage last time, today, newer and modern fonts like Calibri are getting in some action. There are even thousands of new and free fonts that you can download and try out for free if you want, from many sources in the Internet. By using these new fonts, you should be able to take your color designs to the more modern styles that are in use today.

Use additional text and image effects

Always remember to add some finishing touches to your color design. Most modern design do not just have plain old images and text. They employ other text and image effects to make these content a lot more interesting. Using gradient colors for text for example, as well as adding shadows to images can basically make the color design look more robust and whole than its plain and old counter parts. So make sure you add some effects to your text and images to really make them modern.

Update your printing options

Finally, always try to see if there are new printing options available for design. There might be some new special type of glossy ink, or maybe a special kind of paper that can make your own designs pop out and look amazing. By using the best and newest materials, you can be sure that your design will look as new and as updated as it can be with its materials.

Package design is one of the more common forms of design. It’s something we all see everyday, but we notice some designs more than others. Those are the designs that pull us in and make us want to learn more about, or possibly even buy, the product.

Keep It Cost Effective

Obviously, one of the biggest challenges in package design from now on is going to be keeping your design cost effective. Companies are looking to save money by making packaging smaller. Packages have to be small, but still contain all the necessary information. Try keeping out items that are unnecessary and only use components that add to the design.

Make It Noticeable

A consumer is most likely to buy a product with a flashy package that grabs them.A good package will represent a product worth buying. You have only a few seconds to catch a consumer’s attention. A way to do this is through vibrant colors that attract a consumer’s eye. Adding a lot of color to a package works great for a more “fun” product, while a more basic color scheme works better for a more “serious” product. Your colors will be determined by the target audience too.

Keep it Relevant To The Product

A good package design needs to convey the feeling of the product. The package needs to visually relate to both the product and the brand in some way. Use appropriate colors and fonts to give off a sense of what the product is. You have to be creative while staying inside the realm of the product and brand. Another good idea is to use the actual shape of the package to convey the message. Shape the package in a creative way so that it tells a consumer something about the product.

Readability

Don’t cram all the information into the design to create a confusing mess. Use smart spacing, font colors, contrasts, and font sizes to create a clean and smooth layout. Make more important information, such as the product name, more noticeable than less important items. One mistake made in package design is not making the name of the product or brand visible. This doesn’t mean that the name has to be spelled out in huge letters that consume the whole package, but it must be there somewhere. Try to bring the name away from the rest of the design in some way. For example, use different colors that stand out and attract the eye of a consumer.

Remember Your Audience

It is important to never overlook your audience. Put yourself in the consumers mind and try to think of what they will be looking for based on who they are. Consider your audience’s age, gender, and interests. The way a consumer thinks affects how they look at a product, and therefore the package.

An imaginative, memorable business name often proves valuable in all sorts of ways. The day a company called Bundy Very Used Cars changed its name to Rent-a-Wreck, CBS arrived to feature it. The tag line, a saying which accompanies the business name on cards, stationery, ads and even invoices, can have equal impact. Creative think tanks and branding consultants charge tens of thousands of dollars to invent identities for businesses.

Step 1. Brainstorm a list of keywords related to your business. The more words, the better – verbs, nouns and adjectives. For instance, keywords for a fence company would include fence, boundary, perimeter, surround, keep in, keep out, bounds, picket, enclose, yard. This list gets used with several of the later steps, so continue adding words until you feel completely stuck.

Step 2. To lengthen your list of keywords further, look up all the keywords in a thesaurus, or synonym finder, and add other words you see that relate to your business.

Step 3. Try combining words on your list. Sometimes this alone sparks a winner: Frontier Fence; Boundary Keepers. When any idea feels promising but not quite right, be sure to write it down.

Step 4. Consider whether any of the words on your list have a homophone – another word that sounds the same but is spelled differently. If so, add the homophone to your list. For example, one keyword for a human resource company is “hire,” which sounds the same as “higher.”

Step 5. Look back through your list of keywords, and see if any suggest common sayings, mottoes or clichés. For instance, a custom tailoring shop would spot the word “stitch” and jot down A Stitch in Time, In Stitches and Stitched Together. For now, don’t judge or filter what comes up; write down all the possibilities.

Step 6. Now write down words that represent the benefits and results your clients and customers receive from your product or service. A financial software manufacturer might cite these: speed, convenience, accuracy. For a public relations firm, the results would include: fame, reputation, increased sales, credibility, shorter sales cycles. Repeat Steps 3, 4 and 5 for these words. If at any point, you feel you’ve come up with a perfect prospect, skip down to Part Two to complete the business name and tag line generation process.

Step 7. Next, ask yourself what qualities characterize your clientele. A yacht chartering concern might reply: exclusive, busy, demanding, tasteful, famous, private, wealthy, multilingual, cosmopolitan. Here the fence company might add either “home” or “industrial” to its list. Look for combinations of these new terms with the old ones.

Step 8. Add your own name, if you’re the business owner, to the brew. Does it suggest a homonym or pun? Publishing guru Dan Poynter calls his newsletter Publishing Poynters.

Step 9. Since we assume you wish to be best of your kind, consider words that imply mastery, excellence, superiority, biggest, best.

Step 10. Now brainstorm what your customers and clients are trying to avoid or get rid of when they buy from you.

Step 11. What wishes, no matter how far-fetched, do clients often voice? Write these down and play around with them.

Step 12. Go back through your collection of keywords and find or create alliteration – combinations of words beginning with the same letter or same initial sound. Unless the effect is silly, which sometimes happens, alliteration gives your business panache and makes it more memorable.

Step 13. Similarly, try out rhymes and near-rhymes for your keywords. After looking for rhymes, a tourism TV channel might select as its tag line The Vacation Station.

Step 14. Reach for a paradox, a combination of two ideas that nearly contradict each other, but not quite. Construct a paradox by linking two concepts that could be considered opposites.

Step 15. Sometimes an evocative business name or tag line uses figures from ancient mythology.

Step 16. Once you have one or more candidates you like, subject them to a few criteria for success.
• Is it pronounceable and spellable? If former national security adviser Zbigniew Brzezinski formed a consulting company, he’d be better off calling it Washington Defense Partners than The Brzezinski Group. No one wants to stumble over or be unable to spell the name of companies with which they do business.

• Is it concise? When management consultant Harvy Simkovits shortened his tag line from “Helping Independent Business Build Capable Managers & Sound Management Practices for Growth, Sustainability & Prosperity” to “Building Business Growth, Prosperity and Continuity,” it gained effectiveness.

• Is it distinctive? The following aren’t: The Quality Professionals; Fine Dining; Products for Daily Life.

• Does it communicate your message? Something that sounds catchy but doesn’t fit what you do or sell won’t serve you well.

• Will it sound pleasant to the ear? Repeated sounds generally add to the appeal of a name, but you also want to make sure your new name is not easily confused with similar words that have nasty connotations.

• Is it something you can stand behind? If you tell customers you offer Clog-free Gutters – Guaranteed, you had better be able to deliver them.

Step 17. Try it out. Before committing yourself to your top choice, get feedback from at least half a dozen people who’ll be hearing or seeing it for the first time. You may discover one of two things: They just don’t get it, or you don’t feel 100 percent comfortable with it yourself. For instance, you may be surprised to learn that most people in your target market don’t quite know what the word “nemesis” means. In that case, don’t use it. Or you may get a very positive reaction but find yourself shy or embarrassed about saying your new name.

If after a few weeks you still can’t get used to it, hunt for an alternative.

Step 18. Check for legal problems.

Finally you’re ready. Use your new business identity everywhere. Enjoy the rewards when you’ve chosen well…

A LOGO is a vital part of a brand’s identity, especially for a new brand. It is the face of a company, product or service to the world.  A logo, derived from the Greek word “logos” meaning “word”, could be a word or a combination of a word and an image. Your logo is the key element that is used in association with brand messages, taglines, advertising and promotion, packaging, transport, shopping bags and point-of-sale materials, to identity your product, service, company, or community.

1. Make it memorable

An identifiable and memorable logo can convey unique brand values such as strength and confidence, youthfulness, trust, action, health, trendiness or other positive attributes. Think what your customer will recall after he sees your logo, perhaps on a billboard while he’s whizzing by in a car, or in a tiny ad in a newspaper.

2. Use color wisely

When you study the logos of successful brands, you will find that many of them use a single color – like blue (much used by corporate to represent for trust and dependability) or red (for energy and boldness), or both. Most use all caps or highly readable typefaces.

3. Keep it simple

Avoid clutter. Let one concept stand out and imprint itself in your customer’s mind.

4. Make your logo bold and clear

Today there are a huge number of brands crying out for a customer’s attention.Let your logo stand out from the rest with clear, bold typefaces and symbols. Learn from the leaders! Big brands lay out clear design guidelines for specific ways to use their logos. Protect your brand’s identity by doing the same.

A logo is an investment in a brand. Before you design a logo, think about it, research the competition well and study long-lived logos to discover factors that worked. Your effort should be to design a logo that could become a brand or company’s most valuable asset…

So we’ve covered all the different types of film you can use as well as the formats they come in; In today’s post we’ll be looking at the different types of cameras that you can shoot with your newly acquired film knowledge. If you’ve ever picked up any camera, be it digital or film, some of this will not be anything new to you. What is available in the digital world also has a film predecessor, however the reverse is not true in the case of large format cameras as there is yet to be a sensor big enough to make a back for a Large Format body.

Each type of camera has its good points and bad points as well as when to use one over the other, but don’t be pigeonholed, some photographers love to break their boundaries and challenging themselves by going against the norm: i.e. using a Hasselblad 500C/M to shoot a wedding. Hopefully after part 4, you’ll know what camera will suit your photographic style and you’ll be one step closer stepping back into the world of analogue photography.

Single-Lens Reflex Cameras (SLRS)

If you’ve left your house in the past decade, you’ve probably seen one of it’s digital counterparts toted around town by photographers, hipsters and fashionistas alike. Using the concept of DSLRs for reference, a film SLR simply replaces the LCD on the back and the sensor with a film door and curtain  shutter mechanism, using the exposed film as the cameras “sensor”. Because the cameras do away with all the complex electronics a modern DSLR has, a film SLR is thinner but doesn’t lose it’s heft making them perfect workhorses.

In a nutshell, the way the SLR works is that the image is viewed through the lens via a system of a mirror and a pentaprism. When the shutter is pressed, the mirror flips up, shutter curtain opens and exposes the image onto the film directly. Some cameras are full mechanical, meaning that there is no light meter and that the camera will be able to function without batteries. Most film SLRs will have a basic lightmeter, be it light based, analog needle or even in the case of a Nikon F4, full DSLR like electronics. Focusing on an SLR is usually a manual affair, using a “split screen” style focusing for the older ones like the Nikon FE2 and a familiar autofocus in newer film SLRs like the Canon EOS 50.

The biggest benefits to using an SLR is the ability to focus and compose your image looking through the lens. With that you can check your depth of field as well, something not possible on say a rangefinder. SLRs are also easier to find and service than other cameras, not to mention you are able to use film SLR lenses with DSLRs and in some cases vice versa, just without the autofocus.

On the flip side, the reasons people shy away from this popular camera type is because of the “mirror blackout” when the shutter is pressed and mirror is flipped up, you lose sight of the exact moment when it is captured. Another issue some photographers have with the SLR is the vibration cause by the mirror flipping up. At lower light conditions, any slight vibration may affect the sharpness of the image as shutter speeds are much lower.

While not so common, there are also SLRs that take medium format film. Medium format SLRs don’t look like the traditional SLR and neither do they load film, focus, compose or shoot like one. With a medium format SLR, the film is loaded into a “film back” which is interchangeable mid roll, meaning when lighting changes, you can easily swap film without the fuss of remembering where you stopped! Also you can have different backs for different formats e.g. 1 for 6×6 and 1 for 4×6.

A medium format SLR also comes with either a waist level viewfinder like a TLR, or a prism finder like an SLR. The modular design of the medium format SLR is second to none as your kit can even go digital with the inclusion of a digital back from Aptus or Leaf in your kit bag. You can even have a motor winder if you are too lazy to advance the film manually! The medium format SLR (in both film and digital form)is popular amongst fashion and editorial photographers for the sheer quality of pictures you get from it (remembering the stuff you learnt from part 2). The availability of lenses and flexibility make the MF SLR a very evergreen camera for years to come.Popular 35mm SLRs include the FE2, FM2 and F4 from Nikon, AE-1 from Canon and the X-700 from Minolta. Popular MF SLRs include the Hasselblad 500C/M, 503C/W, The Mamiya RB67 and the Kiev 88.

Rangefinder Cameras (RFs)

Rangefinder cameras are uncommon but not unheard of in this day and age, in fact one of the most famous names in the camera world is renown for it’s lineage of rangefinder cameras. To many, rangefinders have been described as the tool for a purist photographer and on the flip side, a hipster accessory. More often than not, it’s the feel and act of shooting a RF is in itself a major draw to photographers as it differs greatly from an SLR.

The way an RF works is completely different from an SLR. Firstly, there are only fixed focal length lenses in the world of RFs (with the exception of the Leica Tri-Elmar one). You don’t do any viewing or focusing through the lens, rather through a complex series of mirrors and framelines. Each camera comes with a predetermined set of framelines to correspond with your lenses, however if your camera doesn’t have the frame lines of your lens, more often than not there will be an external viewfinder for that purpose. In the centre of the framelines there will be a RF patch, where when you turn the focus wheel of your lens, the image on the patch aligns horizontally, letting you know that your subject is in focus.

Alternatively, all RF lenses come with a distance scale on it, so hyperfocusing is a breeze! Depending on which RF you own, you’ll either be fully manual in terms of adjusting shutter speed and aperture (doesn’t require batteries!) or with aperture priority of sorts.

The main benefits of using a RF are very subjective; They can be benefits for some people and very inconsequential to others, depending on the type of shooting you do. First off, RFs are TINY compared to SLRs; for this reason, people find RFs the weapon of choice when shooting street photography as they are less intimidating. The lenses of a RF are smaller and more compact than SLR lenses and have a much higher build quality than them too.

Secondly, the absence of a mirror means the shutter firing sounds much quieter than an SLR. This is true for cameras like the Leica M6 which uses a cloth shutter and the Yashica GSN which uses a leaf shutter. Thirdly, you are able to shoot at lower shutter speeds because of the lack of a mirror to vibrate the camera, making the RF one of the best available light cameras around.  Lastly, as none of the viewing takes place through the lens, when the shutter is pressed, you will never get a blackout so you will know exactly what the camera sees when it captures your image.

One of the cons to using a RF are that all RFs are manual focus, which adds to the charm of using one depending how you look at it. Also you’ll not truly know what the final image looks like as you haven’t been focusing through the lens, especially when using filters. Another issue is that for extremely wide and extreme telephoto, the RF will definitely need an external viewfinder which adds an extra step to taking a photo. The killer downside to RFs is that at the high end, RFs are extremely expensive, especially when you are talking about Leica glass. With a 50mm lens costing the same as a small car, it’s unfortunate that if you start down the path of RFs, the eventuality is that you will somehow end up chasing after that silly red dot.

As with SLRs, there are also medium format RF’s like the Mamiya 7, Voigtlander Bessa 667 and Fuji GSW. You can shoot multiple formats and some cameras even allow you to shoot panoramic photos! The downside is that a medium format RF is HUGE!

Popular film RFs include the Voigtlander Bessa R3A/M, The Leica M6 Classic, M7 and M3, The Zeiss Ikon and the Yashica Electro GSN/GTN/GX.

Twin Lens Reflex Cameras (TLRs)

TLR cameras (or that box type camera your grandparents had), have recently made a resurgence thanks to plastic “toy” cameras like the Blackbird, Fly and the Gakken Flex TLR. The most head turning camera that you’ll see (with the exception of the Large Format camera) and if you ask your parents, they’ll probably remember one in some way shape or form. TLRs range from the self assembled Gakken Flex camera to the beautiful modern Rolleiflex 2.8 Planar, but one thing that they have in common is that they are all beautiful.

Shooting a TLR camera is an experience in itself! The TLR garners its name from the fact it has 2 sets of lenses, one for composition and focusing and one for taking the picture. Focusing is done on a waist level style finder looking down into the top of the camera. A series of mirrors reflects a lifelike image onto the focusing screen and you can use a focusing aid built in to the camera to assist in getting the depth of field and sharpness you require. Modern TLRs like the Rolleiflex 2.8 Planar even come with interchangeable focusing screens to suit your tastes. After that, since most TLRs don’t have meters built in, everything has to be set manually. This shouldn’t really matter anyway as taking the time to compose and set up your shot is part of the beauty of using a TLR.

The best thing about a TLR is the sheer nostalgia value associated with these cameras. If you are looking for a full featured camera, a TLR is not for you as there are way more cameras that would be a better fit. The leaf shutters on a TLR often are discrete and the lack of a moving mirror prevents mirror slap, letting you shoot longer exposures.

The cons of a TLR are quite obvious in that waist level orientation is daunting for a newcomer to photographer, TLRs are often full manual and what you see in the finder is often not exactly what you’ll get because of a phenomena known as parallax error. Newer TLRs also don’t have interchangeable lenses, however there are attachments for the TLR for wide angled shots. Lastly, just like a plus sized model, they are big and beautiful.

Popular film TLRs include the Rolleiflex 2.8 Planar T, Mamiya 330, Lubitel 166+, Seagull 4B and Blackbird Fly.

Well that’s it for now! You’ll notice I didn’t include cameras like scale focus cameras (Minox GT), fixed focal length point and shoots and large format cameras. If there is any demand in the comments, i’ll write a part up for that later. Also in a later part we will cover the phenomena known as Lomography and other toy cameras.

Source by Flickr.