Ali Rajabi

The X1D, a revolution

Fine art photographer and Hasselblad Master Ali Rajabi sees the streets as an open world studio, filled with infinite photographic opportunities. Based in New York, Ali used the Hasselblad X1D, 3,5/45 mm and 3,2/90mm lenses for his latest project and says that the X1D has changed his perspective on medium format cameras.

Camera:Hasselblad X1D-50c, Shutter Speed:1/500 second, Aperture:F/8, Focal Length: 45mm, ISO Speed:200 | © Ali Rajabi

Aside from image quality, Ali was initially attracted to the X1D because it allows him to remain inconspicuous in situations where one may want to avoid attracting too much attention, such as in Street Photography scenarios.

Discussing his lens choice, Ali said: “I used both the XCD 45mm and XCD 90mm lenses for my latest project because I prefer a fixed frame in terms of focal length. The 90mm is similar to a 70mm lens in 35mm full-frame terms. The XCD 90 is sharp and helps to deliver high quality images, especially in low-light situations at f3,2.”

Camera: Hasselblad X1D-50c, Shutter Speed:1/60 second, Aperture: f/3,2, Focal Length: 90mm, ISO: 3200 | © Ali Rajabi

Light plays an important role in Ali’s photographs, with each frame depicting a distinct tension between shadows and highlights. But capturing good quality high-resolution files is another reason why he chooses medium format for his images.

Camera: Hasselblad X1D-50c, Shutter Speed:1/500 second, Aperture: f/8, Focal Length: 45mm, ISO: 200 | © Ali Rajabi

“Size is important to me, I don’t want to create small photographs, they should always be able to maintain their integrity as large pieces,” Ali commented.

Camera: Hasselblad X1D-50c, Shutter Speed:1/125 second, Aperture: f/3,2, Focal Length: 90mm, ISO: 3200 | © Ali Rajabi

Discussing why it isn’t just resolution that made him a Hasselblad photographer, Ali said: you choose this type of camera because you have plans, you know what you want and the most important part for me is that it’s a serious investment in my art career.

“Of course there are other cameras that are good enough to cover many types of photography, but a Hasselblad puts me in a situation that makes each frame more considered. Shooting with a Hasselblad makes me more patient and encourages me to think more deeply, giving me greater control over every detail.”

Camera: Hasselblad X1D-50c, Shutter Speed: 1/1500 second, Aperture: f/8, Focal Length: 45mm, ISO: 200  | © Ali Rajabi

Explaining his influences and motivations, Ali said: “Photography is a journey for me, but there are so many doors that I need and want to unlock. When I’m looking at photos and the projects that I’ve done so far, I believe there are still a lot of untold stories that I want to share. I want to create and unleash those pictures that are calling out from the depths of my mind.”

Ali believes that photography is a solitary action, finding inspiration in the isolation of his work. “Even when working with a team you’re relying on your own feelings, instincts, experience, and creativity. At the end of it all, it is only you who makes the decisive, final shot.”

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