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Thread: How long a lens are you using for H&S Portraits with 8x10 and larger?

  1. #1
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    How long a lens are you using for H&S Portraits with 8x10 and larger?

    I am wondering how long a lens portrait shooters are using for head and shoulders on 8x10, 11x14...

    I stop at 11x14 because, that's all I got, but if anybody is doing H&S with ULF and beyond, please share your thoughts.

    I do realize a short lens can work, and I see 35mm film portraits shot with 50mm to 300mm lenses. LF has different limitations and cannot copy those perspectives in the longer lengths.

    Prefer users to theorists.

    To Infinity and beyond.
    sin eater

  2. #2

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    Re: How long a lens are you using for H&S Portraits with 8x10 and larger?

    The traditional portrait lens is film dimensions summed: 5=7=12, 8+10=18--certainly not any shorter. I'm using a 300mm for 5x7, and have an 18" Ektanon I'm fitting with a Packard to use for 8x10, and I wouldn't mind something a bit longer and f4.5, but what would that be? :-)
    Thanks, but I'd rather just watch:
    Large format: http://flickr.com/michaeldarnton
    Mostly 35mm: http://flickr.com/mdarnton
    You want digital, color, etc?: http://www.flickr.com/photos/stradofear

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    Re: How long a lens are you using for H&S Portraits with 8x10 and larger?

    I haven't done tons of portraits, and most of them are of my wife, but I've used everything from 12" to 20" on 8x10 for H&S shots. Shorter lenses CAN work; here's one taken with a 13" opaque projector lens on 8x10:




    Jonathan

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    Unwitting Thread Killer Ari's Avatar
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    Re: How long a lens are you using for H&S Portraits with 8x10 and larger?

    Whatever suits my mood and the composition at the time.
    On 8x10, I use 150, 250, 300 and 360; used to have a 420, but I sold it.
    But 300 is my most used portrait lens by a good margin.

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    Re: How long a lens are you using for H&S Portraits with 8x10 and larger?

    With the 8 x 10, the majority are shot with a 14-inch lens.

  6. #6
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    Re: How long a lens are you using for H&S Portraits with 8x10 and larger?

    Quote Originally Posted by Randy Moe View Post
    cannot copy those perspectives in the longer lengths.
    Perspective is only determined by subject distance. If you 35mm camera is 6 feet from the subject, place the LF camera the same distance to duplicate the perspective. Duplicating angle of view is not so straightforward. You asked for practical experience and it is actually easiest to use trial and error of various focal length lenses on your view camera. I do have a spredasheet that calculates angle of view for large format lenses at various focal distances. That can be of value if one is purchasing lenses in new-to-the-user focal lengths.

    http://www.largeformatphotography.in...=1#post1122498

  7. #7
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    Re: How long a lens are you using for H&S Portraits with 8x10 and larger?

    I think some of you guys missed the "H&S" part of the question (head and shoulders).

    The perspective of a h&s images using a 300mm lens on 35mm certainly can't be duplicated in 8x10 without a 2000mm lens or so and the requisite distance from the subject, other than using a shorter lens and cropping the image to the desired framing.

    Personally I've used a 450mm lens for h&s but I'm more of an upper-body or full-body portrait kinda guy, at least what I've done with LF, usually with a 300mm on 8x10 or 135/150mm with 4x5.
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  8. #8
    ic-racer's Avatar
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    Re: How long a lens are you using for H&S Portraits with 8x10 and larger?

    Actually the perspective of a 300mm lens/35mm camera H&S shot can be duplicated exactly with any other camera at the same subject distance. That same angle of view on an 8x10 camera can be duplicated exactly with a Nikon T-1200 and a crop during enlarging.

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    Re: How long a lens are you using for H&S Portraits with 8x10 and larger?

    Perspective maybe, but other things like depth of field are much harder to replicate.

  10. #10
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Re: How long a lens are you using for H&S Portraits with 8x10 and larger?

    Ok 'angle of view' not perspective.

    My simple thoughts are ears get wider with shorter lenses. Faces widen, noses become larger.

    Is that wrong thinking?
    sin eater

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