PDA

View Full Version : Making a viewing card for 6x9 or buy one for 6x7 format?



renes
11-Jan-2010, 15:35
I would like to buy viewing card for 6x9 with tape calibrated in a few of lens focal lengths (I use 65, 83, 105, 135, 165, 200mm lenses). B&H sells viewing card for 6x7:

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/61609-REG/Visual_Departures_V66_Visualizer_for_6x4_5_6x6.html

Do you think it will be fine to use it with 6x9 camera or should I better make precise one?

If so, how should I make it?

Thanks

MIke Sherck
11-Jan-2010, 15:56
Just cut it out of mat board. Cut a square of mat board of an appropriate size; say, 5x7 and then cut a 6x9 rectangle out of the center. You can use any color mat board you like. :)

Get some string and tie one end to your new viewing card. Tie a knot on the string at distances corresponding to each lens; i.e., a knot at 65mm, one at 83mm, etc. Leave a bit of string (say, 6" or whatever feels right) at the end and call it done.

Alternatively, if the idea of holding the card 65mm (about 2") from the end of your nose doesn't sound appealing, make the 6x9 rectangle a 12 x 18 rectangle and put a knot at twice the focal length of your lens' focal lengths (i.e., 130mm, 166mm, 210mm, etc.) Scale as desired for comfort.

renes
12-Jan-2010, 00:28
Great thanks Mike.

I did not know it's so simple to make it.
Than I will cut rectangle of 56mm x 82mm, just as size of my rollfilm back.

Leonard Evens
12-Jan-2010, 04:13
You might consider making the opening twice the format size, i.e., 12 x 18 cm or 12 x 14 cm.
Then measure off twice each focal length for the knots along the string. The reason is that at distances such as 90 mm or less, the edges of the opening will likely be a complete blur. If you can't focus on the edges of the opening and the scene, it makes it more difficult to see what is in the frame.

I put marks at the center of each edge, which help me center the frame. I also put additional marks which indicate the possible rise/fall or shift. (If you double the size of the frame, also double these distance.) That helps me avoid framing scenes I can't actually achieve with my camera.

GPS
12-Jan-2010, 05:13
Do never put the knot on your string to "the end of your nose". You would get false view with this method as for normal humans their nose is ahead of their eyes pupil. Put the string on the cheek under your eyes exactly as you see on the picture in the link you posted.
Also, don't make the frame 2x its 6x9 size. Instead, be glad that you can walk around with your naturally smaller inconspicuous 6x9 frame size. You don't focus your eyes on its edges but on the subject in the frame that you want to frame. The edge of the frame can be a little fuzzy but never in a way to impede you the correct framing of the scene. Try it and you'll see.
Let simple things be simple...

MIke Sherck
12-Jan-2010, 06:32
See? There's a tao of the viewing card, or so it appears. Some folks like their card "up close and personal" and make the opening the same size as the film. Others like theirs with a little stand-off distance and make theirs twice the size, so they can hold it twice as far away. Fortunately, they're easy to make so you can experiment to find your own preferences.

Here's what I do: I mostly shoot 4x5 and like longer lenses but don't have freakishly long arms, so my card has a 4"x5" hole and my string has knots at 125mm, 210mm, and 300mm, which are the focal lengths of my lenses. I wander around the world, holding the card up in front of me like a myopic Walter Mitty, and when I find a scene I like I pull the string up to my cheek and then look to see what's the nearest knot. Then I drop the tripod, tip over the backpack, chase the lenses rolling down the hill, and stumble over the camera and break the ground glass. Then I forget the idea and find a nearby bar. It's all really very simple. ;)

Mike

GPS
12-Jan-2010, 06:40
...
Alternatively, if the idea of holding the card 65mm (about 2") from the end of your nose doesn't sound appealing, make the 6x9 rectangle a 12 x 18 rectangle and put a knot at twice the focal length of your lens' focal lengths (i.e., 130mm, 166mm, 210mm, etc.) Scale as desired for comfort.



...
I wander around the world, holding the card up in front of me like a myopic Walter Mitty, and when I find a scene I like I pull the string up to my cheek and then look to see what's the nearest knot. Then I drop the tripod, tip over the backpack, chase the lenses rolling down the hill, and stumble over the camera and break the ground glass. Then I forget the idea and find a nearby bar. It's all really very simple. ;)

Mike

No problem with your measuring "up to your cheek", Mike. It was just the idea to use rather the "end of the nose" (with the same string distance!) that made me worry...:)

Paul Kierstead
12-Jan-2010, 11:15
I was gonna scoff at your nose cheekiness and went to carefully measure my nose. Whoa! What a schnoz! 40mm or so; not insignificant, even by engineers standards. So cheek it is.

The double hole size (or whatever ratio makes one tick) is a different issue though. Not so sure you are justified there.

GPS
12-Jan-2010, 11:29
...
The double hole size (or whatever ratio makes one tick) is a different issue though. Not so sure you are justified there.

Well, that one is also easy, Paul. Just try to focus your eye on the edge of the frame - in that very moment you won't see anything meaningful of the scene itself you try to frame...:) You don't need the frame to be sharp in your vision (and you cannot see it sharp because of the depth of field of your vision) to be able to see where and how it is framing the scene.

tgtaylor
15-Jan-2010, 20:16
While on a road trip a few years back I stopped in Ink Jet Arts in Salt Lake City and purchased all their remaining 6x7 cardboard Blair mounts for mounting 6x7 transparencies. I also bought some 4x5 Blair mounts. Simply take your camera to an open space with a field of view that encompasses all your lens and determine how many fingers the mount must be held in front of you to encompass the same field of view as seen thru the lens. For example, 6 fingers for my 150mm Rodenstock lens holding the mount between the thumb and index finger of the left hand and all 5 fingers of the right lined-up and touching the left thumb.

Well, they don't make Blair mounts anymore (I bought the last ones) but you can cut out a 4x5 opening in heavy matt board and keep it in your pack. Be sure to write the results in permanent ink on the side of the mount.

Somewhat tacky, I guess, but it's a heck cheaper and lighter than a Universal Linhoff finder.