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Pro Photo Supply Staff Picks

We recently asked our staff members which products they'd highly recommend, and gathered a wide variety of answers from cameras to bags to film. Take a deeper dive into some of our employee's staff picks and how they use them.  

 

Juliana Goldman
Advertising and Media Specialist

Juliana has been using the 85mm 1.8 on her Nikon DSLR for over 5 years as her go-to lens. She primarily uses it for portraits, but has shot just about everything with it. She loves the manual-automatic focus and how fast and sharp the lens is. See some of her favorite shots she's taken with it below:

Dan Caplan
Sales Associate

Dan likes this film because it's a unique color negative film that most stores don't carry. See some of his favorite shots he's taken with it below:

Chris Josi
Product Data Specialist

Chris uses his Instax to capture moments with his son, and finds that being able to show him the photos immediately is fun. He also enjoys the retro vibe of it all. See some cute photos he's taken below:

Michael Lee
Photo Lab Customer Service Associate

Portra 400 is Michael's go-to film because it is extremely versatile and the colors are really true to life. He only shoots film and uses it in his portrait photography. He likes how it's not too contrasty or punchy and what you see is what you get. See some photos he's taken with it below:

Tommy Spencer
Advertising and Media Specialist

This is Tommy's go-to bag anytime he's going to be shooting photos. Doesn't matter if it's a music festival, hike in the woods, or traveling. It's big enough to fit all his gear in, while still allowing him to have room for a jacket and other essentials in the roll top section. Plus the straps are comfortable and the outer section is waterproof (New York City storm tested).

He loves the Wandrd Prvke 21L bag because he can fit everything he needs in it for a day of shooting. He has the Essential Camera Cube in the lower half of his bag. In that, he can fit his digital camera body, an additional lens, and one of his panoramic film cameras. In the top, he often has another case with some lenses or film and batteries as well as all of his daily essentials: rain jacket, snacks, iPhone charger cord, mini tripod, etc. On travel trips, the Prvke 21L fits under the seat on the airplane and he can keep his headphones and sanitizer in there as well. He's been all over the US the last few years with this bag and it barely shows any wear. Not to mention I've never had my camera gear get wet or damaged with it. See what's in his bag below:

Jim Clinefelter
Used Product Sales Associate
 

Fujifilm has been making cameras since the 1930s and the film simulation is very very good. You don't need to spend much time in front of a computer after shooting with one. Jim has a photo magazine where he uses fujifilm cameras to capture old photos, books, and his own work. See below:

From Hamaya Hiroshi's First Book

The book is entitled, "Sunappu No Torikata" ("How to Take Snapshots"). This is a first edition copy, dating from July, 1939. It was published by ARS, in Tokyo. This was found last year on a Japanese used book website. My friend Kadoi Sachiko helped facilitate the purchase, and I received this from her yesterday (Japan Post reopened for mail to the USA on June 1st, after suspending service for nearly 10 months). This is not a particularly rare book, but it is difficult to find a first edition copy, especially with the original glassine dust cover.
Francis Haar was a Hungarian/American photographer. Originally trained as an architect, he turned to photography and by the mid-1930s, had a studio in Budapest. He and his wife, Irene, later moved to Paris. When World War 2 began in 1939, Francis and Irene were invited by a Japanese film importer called Kawazoe Hiroshi to come to Japan. By 1940, Francis had a studio in Tokyo, held exhibitions, and published several books. He and his family were evacuated to the countryside near Tokyo, where they spent the duration of the war. By 1948, he was back in business with a new studio. Irene Haar opened a restaurant called "Irene's Hungaria" that became very popular. By the early 1960s Haar and his family were living in Honolulu, Hawai'i, where Francis was teaching photography at the University of Hawai'i. By the time Francis died in 1997, he left behind a record of more than 40 solo and group exhibitions, 15 documentary films, and 14 publications. That's the official record. There were more than 14 publications, as you can see in the second and third rows. At the top is the cover and a page spread from Haar's first book, "Toyo E No Michi" ("Way to the Orient") published by ARS in 1940, co-authored with Seiichi Inoue. In the second row, from left to right in the first 3 columns, are examples of the souvenir photo booklets Francis self-published, "Photographic Views of Japan," published around 1953/54. There are ten titles, in two variations. One variation of the series has covers made of hand-made Japanese art paper and silk string binding. Copies of the other variation have card stock covers that fold to become mailers. Some of these also had illustrated envelopes, probably to attract attention at the US PX stores in Tokyo. Also, in some of the art paper covered copies, the tables of content omit credit to Francis Haar. In addition, in some of the volumes of both variations, the tables of content also mention which photographs were taken by Francis. The other images are not credited, and it is not known who the photographers were. As for the photographs, both variations have the same photos, in the same order. The majority of the photos are printed on Kodak Velox glossy silver-gelatin paper. There are some minor differences in exposure, and the size of the image numbers vary. At the far right is an ashtray from Irene's Hungaria Restaurant in Tokyo. In the bottom row is the folding cover, contents list and two images from "Pictorial Japan," which also dates from 1953/54. This portfolio contains 24 silver-gelatin photographs by Francis, dating between 1940 and 1953. In the image at the far right, there is an inset image from the "Japanese Women" booklet to confirm that it is the same model and to help date these works (the larger image is from 1953). Francis Haar was a fantastic photographer, and it's worth your while to become familiar with his fine work. There is a great and affordable book about him, edited by his son Tom, called "Francis Haar- A Lifetime of Images," published by the University of Hawai'i Press.
Written and illustrated with photographs by Minami Minoru, and published in 1921 by ARS in Tokyo. Minami was a photographer who worked in the Pictorialist style of photography, which a lot of people look down on these days, but I think these images are interesting and well-done. This publication preceded the magazine "Geijutsu Shashin Kenkyo," which was edited by Minami and published by ARS. After 1923, it merged with "Kamera" magazine, which ran until the 1950s. This is a small, hard-bound, well-made book, printed on quality paper and sold with a heavy cardstock slipcase. There are at least 9 copies of this book in Japanese libraries, one at the British Museum, and a few in private collections. My copy came from a book dealer in California. How many of these were printed? If you look at the colophon (the third from the left image in the top row), it states that this is from the 15th edition. No, it's not. Japanese publishers were fond of embellishing edition sizes when this was published. Realistically, there were at least two true editions, because the British Museum's copy (marked as a 21st edition copy) is dated 1922. Let's say there were perhaps 5,000 total copies published. What wasn't sold would have been lost to various sorts of attrition- changing tastes in photography, The Great Kanto Earthquake of 1923, The Great Depression, The Firebombings of Japan in 1945, and Time...leaving perhaps a few hundred on dealer shelves and in libraries and private collections.
"Kokka" is one of the oldest Arts magazines in Asia, being published nearly continuously since 1889. Many of the issues from the Meiji period have one, sometimes two, color woodblock prints, as well as collotype photographs (which were produced by Ogawa Kazumasa up until about 1907). "Kokka," (one translation is "The Nation's Flower") was founded by Okakura Kakuzo, who was a museum director, curator, and essayist, as well as an advisor for Captain Brinkley's multi-volume "Japan- Described and Illustrated by the Japanese." Outside Japan, Okakura is famous for his "Book of Tea." Photographs don't really do this magazine justice, as this is really something you need to experience in person. These are large softbound magazines, measuring a little over 11x14, and bound with silk ribbons. I have 8 issues of this magazine, and will post more images from them soon.
Top (left to right) Cover and woodblock print from issue 63 (December, 1894); Cover and woodblock print from issue 68
(May, 1895)
Bottom (left to right) Cover and woodblock print from issue 97
(October, 1897); Cover and woodblock print from issue 159
(October, 1903)
This hand-colored albumen photograph is from a series of Geisha images by Ogawa, created for an exhibition (and beauty contest) held in 1891 at the Ryounkaku, Japan's first skyscraper, located in Asakusa, Tokyo. The cursive kanji on the fan to the right of Yakko-san reads (from right to left) "Ryounkaku." Many of the photos in this series also have the kanji on the fans held by the Geisha.

Kevin (KG) Griffith
Sales Associate 

KG likes the feel and optical finder of this body and its 45.7MP and 4K video. He finds it to be especially good in low light, with good colors and balance, proving to be a great camera all the way around. See some shots he's taken with his D850 below:

Eriq Nelson
Digital Platform Manager 

Eriq enjoys this lens as it is really good for clean technological photography. It's so outside of the usual nature photography he does, so this lens helps him work with more constructed lighting. See below for some nature shots he's taken with it:

Alyson Bowen
Photo Lab Supervisor

Alyson likes this camera because it is an easy to use introduction to medium format film. The lightweight body makes it the perfect addition to her summer adventures. With it being completely manual she has been enjoying experimenting with multiple exposures and overlapping frames. See some of her images below:

Jeff Edwards
Sales Associate

Jeff enjoys this lens because it's a really nice sharp lens with a great zoom range. It's helped him out with video and fashion photography. See some of his favorite images he's taken with it below:

Chris Tabacchi
Photo Lab Technician

Chris enjoys using this film as to him, traditional photography is sort of dead. So he likes making images with something that's a little different, and more unique. See some of his shots with it below:

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