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Thread: Petzval Picture Post Thread

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Dec 2000
    Tonopah, Nevada, USA

    Petzval Picture Post Thread

    I'll stick my neck out and we'll see where if anywhere this will go. Kevin's Bokeh thread, and W. Linne's Wide Open thread have pre-staged interest in lenses with signature Bokeh.

    The idea will be to begin some picture post threads that show what folks have made with the different lens types. A Verito thread, Cooke Portrait thread, Heliar etc.
    Give enough details like f stop etc to get an idea of what the different lens types might be good for.

    The following 4 pictures were made today with a Kodak 5X7 2D and an 8" f5 Darlot Lantern Petzval. Film was Aerial Recon Pan X rated @ ASA 32, and developer was Rodinal 1:100 6.5 min.



    antique lenses

    tomato plant

    I hope others will join in with some of your photos made with a petzval formula lens. With participation, these threads could become quite useful for those looking for a particular style or look. Someone might read through this and say, well, I know I don't want a Petzval!
    He is no fool who gives what he cannot gain that which he cannot lose. Jim Elliot, 1949

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Oct 2005

    Re: Petzval Picture Post Thread

    This is a great idea!

    I don't own this lens so I can't contribute by posting an image, but here is my subjective impression:

    The high contrast area of the pansy photo seems a bit disturbing. On the subjective bokeh scale, ranging from "blissfully mellow" to "projectile-vomit inducing", I'd rank it mildly disturbing. The insignia on the Kodak lens medallion is also mildly disturbing, as is the corduroy background in the same photo. The hood on the Rodenstock lens is a bit edgy too.

    All other out-of-focus areas are pleasing to my eye, and I would surmise, "this lens has good bokeh" "this lens makes images with nice bokeh"

    I've made my case in Kevin's, "Bokeh, Bokeh, Bokeh" thread by arguing that lens and shutter attributes are not the sole determinants of good bokeh. Bokeh is in the image, and extra-optical contributions are vital determinants. I believe that these photos support this notion.

    Thank you for starting this thread Jim - I have high hopes for it!

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Nov 1999

    Re: Petzval Picture Post Thread

    Great idea Jim,

    Petzval on a 5x4 about 9" lens with no identification. Shot with a studio shutter. Aperture about f8.


  4. #4

    Join Date
    May 2006
    Westminster, MD

    Re: Petzval Picture Post Thread

    You want to talk Bokeh!

    RB Graflex 4x5 SLR customed rigged with a Kodak Aero-Ektar 178mm f/2.5 lens. Provia 100F, 1/1000 of a second at f/2.5. Washington DC Cherry Blossoms.

    Please visit my web blog:
    When I grow up, I want to be a photographer.

  5. #5

    Re: Petzval Picture Post Thread

    I enjoy this type of post, as I love the glow/diffuse/other properties of older or unusual lens designs. Very attractive 'study'.

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Sep 2003

    Re: Petzval Picture Post Thread

    10" x 12" Ruby Ambrotype on purple glass
    Dallmeyer 3A Patent Portrait Lens w/waterhouse stop (f/8 sh?)
    11x14 B&J view

    6.5" x 8.5" full-plate ambrotype on black glass
    Darlot portrait Petzval lens (~7.5") with waterhouse stop
    homemade 8x10 box camera

    Love those Petzvals...


  7. #7

    Join Date
    Jul 2006

    Re: Petzval Picture Post Thread

    Love those shots Joe, and everyone else too.. but especially Joe

  8. #8

    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Massachusetts USA

    Re: Petzval Picture Post Thread

    The image of the woman in the woods is spectacular.

    To my limited seeing, most photos of nudes - especially those taken outdoors - look contrived, but this one is truly magical.

    In addition, I find it amusing that it breaks so many precepts concerning "how to make a good photograph". It goes to show that it's often best and most courageous for the artist to follow the Muse wherever she leads.

  9. #9

    Re: Petzval Picture Post Thread

    Petzvals??? I think I've used one or two of them.

    Here's a picture I took at Land's End in San Francisco on my last day with the Chinese girl.

  10. #10

    Re: Petzval Picture Post Thread

    And another.... The second to last woman to betray me (for anyone keeping count)

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