There is something about the Hasselblad that inspires affectionate name calling. But is it Hassy or Blad? There’s a world of difference between the two.
Back at the beginning of the month we spent a Saturday afternoon trawling round the garden of a country house, admiring the surroundings and photographing it.
I used to be a self-conscious photographer, shy of doing anything more than snapping in public places, but two years of self portraits and a camera that stands out from the crowd has put a stop to all that.
Mostly by the time I’ve got my camera out, I’m in the zone. I don’t much notice people around me, and if I do they’re on the periphery of sound and vision.
To be fair I could hardly fail to see the guy stalking me with his DSLR when he leapt in front of me to get in first for the shot I was busy lining up.
A little further round by the Chinese garden one of the volunteer guardians breathed a little Bladmiration* while I was waiting for Ron to take his shot and I stopped and chatted about the joy of using an old camera. (Please don’t tell Vlad I called him old – he’s touchy about these things).
But when I was standing in front of the monkey puzzle trees, deciding how to best capture the spiky foliage and cursing myself for not loading Vlad up with black and white film, I didn’t notice the Spanish tourist, as he hissed “Hassy,” and then more insistently “Hassieeee!” until after I’d stepped away and he moved in to take the same shot.
I felt a bit mean about not acknowledging the Bladmiration but by that time he was already moving away, busy checking the screen on his SLR and showing it to his friends.
Vlad’s not a fussy camera. He’ll work in all lights. He even takes well to flash. But there’s one thing he’s particular about, and that’s his name. He’s no Hassie.
He’s Vlad. And Vlad can only be a Blad.
*Bladmiration: Admiring glances or comments from a camera enthusiast, usually an aspiring Hasselblad user or someone who has used one in the past. Not to be confused with Blad Envy which can result in the enthusiast copying the Hasselblad user’s every move (see above), and even lead to pointless square cropping of a perfectly decent 4×6 photo.