I've received my first large format kit this week and am keen to try it out this weekend so i can be sure its all working fine.. I'm familiar with various 35mm and medium format cameras, so am keen to learn how to take photos with a large format camera.
I brought the recommended beginners text
"Using the View Camera" by Steve Simmons
Which i am about to go and read through but for now i was looking for more specific answers to questions about the kit i got.. here are the items that I brought..
Shen Hao 5x4 folding field camera body varnished teak.
Schneider Kreusnack symmar 150 5.6 for 5x4 +lensboard
5 double dark slides for 5x4 cameras
Horseman 6cmx12cm.120 roll fim back for 5x4 cameras
I know some people aren't fans of the Shen Hao cameras, I was too impatient but I'm hoping it'll be sufficient for a beginner, who'll probably make more mistakes than the camera causes.
I'll try to take some pictures so perhaps people can tell me if for example the lens is a modern design or an old one, whether its rated as reasonable or a poor performer.. it was quite cheap and I was keen to not spend too much more as the combined costs were higher than i'd have liked to have spent.
I brought the medium format back as I am familiar with developing my own medium format film.. also my scanner (espon 4490) will scan the 6cmx12cm slides straight away.. this sadly looks like the maximum negative size it will scan as the light box in the lid is not any taller than the 6cm of medium format film.. I've posted seperately about my patterson orbital tank that I'm hoping will let me develop 5x4" film, but for now I plan to conduct initial tests with that medium format back.
It has no instructions with it, its not THAT complex, i'll have a fiddle with it more later, for now could someone with experience of these horseman backs tell me how its going to work.. loading the film should be fair enough, i can see where the film will be placed for exposure, how am i going to protect this film from the light when its not mounted on the camera... with it on the camera, how do i compose the image that I plan to shoot with it on the 5x4" screen?
Beyond that, i'm not sure whether i can leave the lens board on the camera when i try to fold it away.. anyone know if this is possible with the shen hao camera, and that 150mm lens?
That's it for now.. I'm lacking a focusing black out cloth or whatever, something i'll need to rectify, initial test shots will be done at home anyways where i can use a towel hopefully.
Your help is very much appreciated by this large format newbie.