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Camillou
18-Jul-2013, 04:47
Hi !

I've always suffered from the "good guy syndrome" and I've observed physical laws respectfully ;)
I mean, when I was shooting 4x5 I used lenses given as perfect for this format.
The same way I used to shoot 8x10 with SA 165mm or Sironar 300mm. No surprise !
Now this time is over.

Using a 8x10 Sinar P, I've got the project to use lenses with small coverage in order to obtain circular pictures.
Ok, I'm not the first with this idea in mind...
http://tribblemancenido.blogspot.fr/2011/01/deborah-luster-tooth-for-eye.html
or obviously Emmet Gowin
http://www.geh.org/ne/str085/htmlsrc5/m197400300002_ful.html

If I've created this post, that's mainly because I'd love to have some ideas about the lens that I need. I'm looking for post ww2 lenses as I need reliable shutters and perfect sharpness.
My main goal is to make portraits. It will be a kind of 1:4 to 1:5 reduction.
The image circle given by lensmakers are calculated for a focus on infinite. With a 1:4 reduction, this circle will be way larger and I'm a bit lost for my choice... Goal is not to have dark corners but a perfect circle on 8x10, so diameter of illuminated area must be under 19cm.
Furthermore I don't want wide angles. A super-angulon 38 XL will give me a perfect circular picture, for sure, but it will be a bit weird for portrait.

Thanks a lot for reading and, if you have suggestions I'd be really happy to read your posts !

Bob Salomon
18-Jul-2013, 04:51
If you don't want wide angles then use tele designs for 4x5 like a Tele Arton or Tele Xenar or process lenses with 48░ coverage like an Apo Ronar.

Camillou
18-Jul-2013, 05:13
Thanks for your answer !

Yes, a Tele-Arton or a Tele-Xenar (they both exist in 180mm and 240mm (and longer but it's useless for me)) seem to be a good solution.
For sure their illumination circle will be under 8in in portrait conditions ?

Jim Jones
18-Jul-2013, 05:45
A mask with a circular aperture either in front or behind a lens may also work. The distance between the mask and lens will affect the sharpness of the transition between image and darkness.

jp
18-Jul-2013, 05:46
I would just mask it in the camera with a piece of dark matt board or something.

Camillou
18-Jul-2013, 05:58
Well, thanks for your interest and for all those answers!

Yes, a piece of cardboard will do the trick. Lenses I already have would even be perfectly usable if I chose this solution.
But it will be hard to justify the choice of a circular picture if it's only an aesthetic one.
To have a mechanical constraint given by the design of the lens was an interesting challenge for me. I would be able to print the whole field the lens could capture.

Jac@stafford.net
18-Jul-2013, 06:16
The images you point to are 'printed' round. The lenses used were normal.

DannL
18-Jul-2013, 06:23
Even the article states . . . " are printed in circular forms that echo what the lens of Luster’s 8 x 10 Deardorff field camera sees". Early Kodak cameras had a mask at the film plane.

Camillou
18-Jul-2013, 06:24
The images you point to are 'printed' round. The lenses used were normal.

That's not obvious!
For Gowin, many sources (including the one under) point that he used lenses with smaller-than-requested-coverage on his 8x10 camera.

You can find a beautiful post about circular pictures and how photographers have achieved this form in a blog post by Alec Soth (great artist btw) :
http://alecsothblog.wordpress.com/2007/07/23/circular-photos-or-views-from-the-convex-helmet-shield/

C. D. Keth
18-Jul-2013, 08:02
But it will be hard to justify the choice of a circular picture if it's only an aesthetic one.

You're making a purely aesthetic choice by picking a lens with inadequate coverage. It's not like you're constrained by optical science or finances like Atget was when he made all those pictures that ran out of coverage for the rise he needed. The mechanism by which you achieve a circular image is the only thing that changes.

DannL
18-Jul-2013, 08:38
To supplement my previous post, and after looking at the links posted by the OP, I can see several methods used. It all depends on how you want the edge of the image to terminate, and where you want it to occur. ie; in the camera or during printing. Do you want a soft edge, abrupt termination of the image, etc.

1. Mask at the film plane (in camera).
2. Mask between lens and film plane (in camera).
3. Mask at the printing easel.
4. Using a lens that doesn't cover the film adequately.
5. Cutting the print into a circular shape and mounting.
6. Dodging or burning at the easel.
7. Bleaching/reduction

Burning with a mask at the easel is the method I've used to print oval shaped prints. Or was that dodging? I guess that depends how you look at it.

Leigh
18-Jul-2013, 09:04
You missed one option...
Use a screw-on circular lens hood of appropriate diameter and length to vignette the image when shot.

This has the advantage of allowing you to see the effect on the ground glass before exposure.

- Leigh

Camillou
18-Jul-2013, 09:21
Thanks everyone for your ideas!
Next step for me will be to work and take pictures.

However I'd really love to keep the idea of using a lens on a larger format film to capture the whole circle it can "see". The easiest way would be to use a 20x24 camera but I'll keep on trying that on a poor-man 8x10 camera.
Tele-Arton 180mm could be a good way. It's given for 115mm at f22 focused at infinity so I guess wide-open it will be a perfect circle on 8x10 even if focused for a 1:4 reduction... (The 240mm version could maybe also work.)

Michael Graves
18-Jul-2013, 09:21
I have a 15" Wollensak telephoto design that works great for that purpose. (No you can't have mine...go get you own). It only throws about a 7" circle, so the frame doesn't cut off the sides, and the longer focal length makes it nice for the "portrait perspective".

DannL
18-Jul-2013, 09:24
One problem I see now is the OP's request "not to have dark corners but a perfect circle on 8x10". That perty much eliminates doing anything at the camera. With black and white film the unexposed emulsion will be cleared by fixer and then will print darker or as black. Using a lens that doesn't cover the film will also create a negative that is clear/thinner in the corners, ultimately printing darker or black in those areas.

Leigh
18-Jul-2013, 09:29
I'd really love to keep the idea of using a lens on a larger format film to capture the whole circle it can "see".
Check out lenses of the telephoto design. They typically have much smaller ICs than other designs of the same focal length. For example:
Fujinon T 300/8 (telephoto): IC = 213mm.
Fujinon C 300/8.5 (regular): IC = 380mm.

- Leigh

E. von Hoegh
18-Jul-2013, 09:34
Thanks everyone for your ideas!
Next step for me will be to work and take pictures.

However I'd really love to keep the idea of using a lens on a larger format film to capture the whole circle it can "see". The easiest way would be to use a 20x24 camera but I'll keep on trying that on a poor-man 8x10 camera.
Tele-Arton 180mm could be a good way. It's given for 115mm at f22 focused at infinity so I guess wide-open it will be a perfect circle on 8x10 even if focused for a 1:4 reduction... (The 240mm version could maybe also work.)

When a manufacturer specifies an image circle, it means the diameter of a circle of sharp definition. Outside this circle, the image progressively gets less sharp, finally fading to unuseable mush then blackness. Different lenses have different rates of falloff, some will give a rapid fallof due to their design, or the manufacturer deliberately vignettes the lens. Others give a circle of illumination that is much larger than the circle containing the sharp image.

Jim Galli
18-Jul-2013, 10:27
Seems the obvious answer is use any lens you want with a piece of black construction paper wrapped tightly around the front bell and pulled forward until you see the vignette you like.

Actually though, you should get over your shutter phobia and find a 10" or so Petzval so the resulting pics will have some character besides 'round'. I have a page on my site with some round shots done on 4X5.

jp
18-Jul-2013, 10:34
But it will be hard to justify the choice of a circular picture if it's only an aesthetic one.
To have a mechanical constraint given by the design of the lens was an interesting challenge for me. I would be able to print the whole field the lens could capture.

No need to justify it. Photography and aesthetics should be one.

Lens constraints is an old challenge. Look at the old western landscapes where the top of the photo is domed in darkness. It's probably coverage issues from lens rise that ended up being an aesthetic given. (Such as in the stereo viewing cards) The sky could not provide any detail on the UV sensitive plates then anyways, so if it vignetted, no big deal. You're not going to have perfect sharpness by maximizing lens coverage. It's gonna get crazy with warped field of focus, light dropoff, distortion. Peztvals show this; particularly well with something with a small pattern like the cone centralisateur.

If you want mechanical constraints to provide a challenge, you aught to take up pictorialism. Most of the sharp lenses had already been invented, but they went soft by lens choice and made the most of it.

DannL
18-Jul-2013, 11:29
Has the OP decided if dark corners (in print) are fine? It will make a world of difference on how one accomplishes the task.

Camillou
18-Jul-2013, 11:36
First of all, thanks for your interest and for your kind help!


I have a 15" Wollensak telephoto design that works great for that purpose. (No you can't have mine...go get you own). It only throws about a 7" circle, so the frame doesn't cut off the sides, and the longer focal length makes it nice for the "portrait perspective".


Check out lenses of the telephoto design. They typically have much smaller ICs than other designs of the same focal length. For example:
Fujinon T 300/8 (telephoto): IC = 213mm.
Fujinon C 300/8.5 (regular): IC = 380mm.
- Leigh

Well telephoto will be the field to explore.
First some of them are design for 6x9cm or 9x12cm so they already lack coverage for 4x5. Seems true for Rodenstock Rotelar, some Schneider Tele-xenar or newer Tele-arton but this Wollensak (way more rare in Europe than the ones I've listed) could be a good option. Second point, I won't steal yours cause hopefully telephoto lenses are not the most thought-after (beside apo-tele-xenar maybe) and some bargains are available.
For this Fujinon T, with 213mm its IC diameter is already wider than a 8x10 film. A shame because both Fujinon lenses I have are true gems!



One problem I see now is the OP's request "not to have dark corners but a perfect circle on 8x10". That perty much eliminates doing anything at the camera. With black and white film the unexposed emulsion will be cleared by fixer and then will print darker or as black. Using a lens that doesn't cover the film will also create a negative that is clear/thinner in the corners, ultimately printing darker or black in those areas.

Sorry if I was not clear. My english is awful (hope you pardon my mistakes) and I still learn this language everyday.
When I wrote that I didn't want dark corners I meant that I don't want only black corners. The goal is to have a true circular picture that will fill a 8x10 piece of film. When it will be printed, everything will turn black but the circular picture.
You got a great example of what I mean here :
http://static.photo.net/attachments/bboard/00J/00J6kq-33927184.JPG (taken from this thread on photo.net: http://photo.net/large-format-photography-forum/00J5dV)



When a manufacturer specifies an image circle, it means the diameter of a circle of sharp definition. Outside this circle, the image progressively gets less sharp, finally fading to unuseable mush then blackness. Different lenses have different rates of falloff, some will give a rapid fallof due to their design, or the manufacturer deliberately vignettes the lens. Others give a circle of illumination that is much larger than the circle containing the sharp image.

I understand it. Sadly I think the only way to figure out how it will turn is to test and test again many lenses.
It would be absolutely meaningless for a manufacturer to give in his catalogues the circle of darkness. Who would like to go so far in the coverage? Me :)



Seems the obvious answer is use any lens you want with a piece of black construction paper wrapped tightly around the front bell and pulled forward until you see the vignette you like.
Actually though, you should get over your shutter phobia and find a 10" or so Petzval so the resulting pics will have some character besides 'round'. I have a page on my site with some round shots done on 4X5.

Oh that's not a true phobia and I can manage it. I had a good bunch of lenses on old compound shutters and it was the hell to have fairly accurate slow speeds.
But whether I have to buy a Packard or Sinar plane shutter or a lens mounted on Compound, Ilex or whatever, this is not a true problem!



No need to justify it. Photography and aesthetics should be one.
Lens constraints is an old challenge. Look at the old western landscapes where the top of the photo is domed in darkness. It's probably coverage issues from lens rise that ended up being an aesthetic given. (Such as in the stereo viewing cards) The sky could not provide any detail on the UV sensitive plates then anyways, so if it vignetted, no big deal. You're not going to have perfect sharpness by maximizing lens coverage. It's gonna get crazy with warped field of focus, light dropoff, distortion. Peztvals show this; particularly well with something with a small pattern like the cone centralisateur.
If you want mechanical constraints to provide a challenge, you aught to take up pictorialism. Most of the sharp lenses had already been invented, but they went soft by lens choice and made the most of it.

Yes, perfect sharpness in the center of the photo only. It will be enough!
Obviously edges will show a whole book of unbearable aberrations but the only one who will have to be shameful about that it's the lens!!!

Thanks again for all your advices!

DannL
18-Jul-2013, 11:45
Thank you for the explanation. As you can see, everyone is concerned about your well being. I've had strange day, so if I come across somewhat terse . . . I woke up this morning under a bridge only being able to hear in Swedish. Thank goodness I can still type in inglÚs. Ciao! ;-) (just in jest).

Robert Oliver
18-Jul-2013, 12:10
I achieved this same exact effect at full body length portrait distances on 8x10 with a 10.5 inch Cooke Portrait by using a front mounted 4" Packard Shutter and shooting at f16...

Went away at head and shoulder distance... Fixed it with a bigger packard.

Vignetting will work

Jac@stafford.net
18-Jul-2013, 12:31
Done in print.
Not circle.
http://www.digoliardi.net/bosse-winona.jpg

Leigh
18-Jul-2013, 12:31
My english is awful (hope you pardon my mistakes) and I still learn this language everyday.
Speaking as a certified linguist (multiple languages), I think your English is excellent.

- Leigh

Camillou
18-Jul-2013, 13:25
Oh thanks for this unexpected compliment!

But as soon as I have a look at my previous messages I can see ugly things like:
"some of them are designED for 6x9cm [...]"

But it's always a pleasure to get up each morning with the certainty that we'll learn something!

Thanks everyone!

goamules
18-Jul-2013, 13:47
Yeah, I agree with Galli, go for a Petzval.

http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8190/8112779969_79038010c8_z.jpg

leighmarrin
18-Jul-2013, 23:10
[QUOTE=Camillou;1047913]
"For Gowin, many sources (including the one under) point that he used lenses with smaller-than-requested-coverage on his 8x10 camera."

FWIW, I recall reading in an older issue of View Camera magazine an interview with Gowin in which he said he used a 90mm Angulon on an 8x10 view camera for his round photos. All of the round Gowin photos I've seen appear to have been done with a wide-angle lens.

Camillou
19-Jul-2013, 01:33
Thanks Leighmarrin for this piece of information. 90mm is maybe not so wide, once again the answer will be to test all those options!

Oh and thanks Goamules for adding the first photo of this thread, and a beautiful one!
The swirling effect of this Petzval is really haunting and with a shorter focal length it would have been a completely circular image.

Leigh
19-Jul-2013, 05:48
90mm is an extreme wide-angle on 8x10, comparable to a 45mm on 4x5.

- Leigh

ic-racer
19-Jul-2013, 06:44
8" is about 200mm so look for lenses with image circle around 200mm. There is a chart here with most info you will need: http://www.largeformatphotography.info/lenseslist.html

Marko Trebusak
19-Jul-2013, 09:56
8" is about 200mm so look for lenses with image circle around 200mm. There is a chart here with most info you will need: http://www.largeformatphotography.info/lenseslist.html
That chart is an usefoul resource, but not for what OP would like. Those data are for objective focused at infinity. On the other hand with a bit of trigonometry, one can calculate image circle at any distance.
Marko

ic-racer
19-Jul-2013, 10:25
That chart is an usefoul resource, but not for what OP would like. Those data are for objective focused at infinity. On the other hand with a bit of trigonometry, one can calculate image circle at any distance.
Marko

Yes, or if he has his camera and a lens handy he can use simple math and divide his (bellows draw) by (focal length) and multiply that by (image circle at infinity) to find his effective image circle.

Leigh
19-Jul-2013, 10:34
It's a linear relationship.

The IC diameter at 1:1 (life-size image) is twice that at infinity focus.

It also varies with aperture, getting smaller as the aperture gets larger (smaller f/number).
The IC you find on lens datasheets is usually three stops down from wide open, i.e. f/16 for an f/5.6 lens.

- Leigh