Vitaly Khomchenko

This post is the first in a series called “The Autocord Interview.”  Click here to read what the Autocord Interview is about.

Name: Vitaly Khomchenko
Country: Ukraine
City: Kiev
Profession: Designer and amateur photographer

How did you become interested in photography and why?
My interest in film photography started with lomography.  In my network I saw cool photos and I was amazed how interesting film photography is and I decided to try it out.   In less than a year I understood that I wanted to try more of the film magic, tried a couple of 35 mm cameras, but I soon realised that middle format and square photographs are just mine.

How did you discover the Autocord?
Well, first I bought Kiev60+sonnar 180/2.8, but I was enchanted with tlrs, so I decided to try that too.   I thought that at first I should try a budget camera, so I was first looking at YashicaMat. But after I saw this photo I understood that I wanted an Autocord 🙂

Where did you buy your Autocord and for how much ($)?
I got it on ebay for about 150 dollars.

What are some of your favorite features about the Autocord?
On that picture with the cat I was amazed by the terrific and very beautiful sharpness and I’m am still impressed with this feature.   Second thing I’ve noticed – it gives a very smooth and gentle picture at the same time, and the bokeh is really great, very beautiful.   Third, autocord is really well built, inspite of the notorious focus lever problem (which I must say I’ve had and got it fixed).   And Autocord also has an incomparably cool waist-level finder (the glass is not really clear, but the construction is very comfy).

What has worked best for you in the process of developing and scanning film?
Concerning my experience – I use the lab to develop and scan color films. As for b/w films – I’ve started to develop them myself the last 6 months. Right now I’m still on the stage of learning through experimenting 🙂 But I should say that in 90% I’m very pleased with the results. I’m using Epson V500 for scanning. It does quite well for a budget scanner, but i still hope to upgrade one day 🙂

Any future plans or dreams in photography?
Now I’m thinking about trying large format and instant films.

Any final word/comments?
I should say that I’ve also had a Hasselblad, but eventually I understood that TLRs work best for me, so I sold it and bought Rolleiflex instead. I like it a lot really, but I will always advice an Autocord to those who ask which TLR camera is best to buy. As it was really a great great experience for me and I still love it (and now my wife is enjoying it. And the Autocord viewfinder is still the best 🙂 picked these favorite pictures from Vitaly:

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2 Responses to Vitaly Khomchenko

  1. Eli says:

    Vitaly has some great photos, my favorite is this one:

    His pictures showcase the great OOF texture the Autocord lens provides. Maybe you could ask him about how he uses the Autocord to get the shots he wants? (Ie, hand-held vs tripod, does he overexpose color, etc.)

  2. Vitaly says:

    hi. I don’t do anything special – i develop my films (color films) in lab, but i don’t think they do anything special to it. i mostly use 125-250 shutter speeds, so i don’t actually need to use tripod. Nothing else worth mentioning.

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