Medium Format Landscape Photography

Landscape photographers set a high value on technical quality of their work, I am no exception. For many years I worked exclusively with the best of what the Canon system had to offer. Since the beginning of 2014 I use complementarily a digital medium format system. 2016 I replaced my Canon Body with a Sony A7rII, using still Canon lenses with an Metabones adapter.

Why Medium Format?

It is insanely expensive, slow and heavy. Nevertheless I decided to invest in a medium format system for these three reasons:
1. The main reason was breaking new ground in landscape photography because I have developed a routine over the years that has been gnawing at my motivation. The new system and the new way of working has given me a motivation and inspiration boost. Not only in the field, also regarding the image optimization. I’m forced to use another software and the medium format files differ in color rendition and contrast range compared to Canon or Sony files.
2. As an individualist I don’t like to do the same thing that many other landscape photographers do. Through the medium format system I have created a recognition factor and can thereby distinguish myself from the rest. From the perspective of the individual entrepreneur, this means an economic advantage, from my own personal point of view an emotional one.
3. The incredible image quality with wide angle (see example image on the right). I have only two fixed focal lengths from Rodenstock, a 32mm (equivalent to 20.5mm in 35mm format) and a 50mm (equivalent to 32mm in 35mm format). There is no way to achieve crisp sharpness into the corners and the finesse of a technical camera within the 35mm format. Not the large 40x54mm sensor makes the difference, but the outstanding lenses in combination with tilt and shift. For standard and tele focal lengths there are excellent lenses in the 35mm format that almost equalize the difference to medium format. Therefore, I am working with a Sony a7RII at focal lenghts of 50mm or longer.

Equipment List

Arca Swiss Rm3Di (Technical Camera)
Phase One IQ3 100MP (Digital Medium Format Back)
Rodenstock HR 4/32mm
Rodenstock HR 4/50mm

Sony a7RIV (with Metabones Adapter)
Canon 4/70-200mm IS
Canon 4/16-35mm IS
Canon TS-E 3.5/24mm II
Zeiss Vario-Sonnar 3.4/35-70mm

Gitzo Carbon Series 2 and Series 3 (Tripods)
Arca Swiss P0, P1 and Z1 (Monoballs)

Lee Filter System (GND, ND)
B+W and Heliopan Polarizers

Rainer Mirau FotografPhase One IQ3 100MPArca Swiss Rm3Di