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Thread: Greetings from Phoenix

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Apr 2019
    Location
    Phoenix
    Posts
    5

    Greetings from Phoenix

    Hi there from sunny Phoenix, Arizona. I am happy to be joining this group. I would one day like to take portraits with a large format camera.
    I would love some idea on what would be a starter camera.
    I started taking pictures with a Pentax DSLR and film, I have moved to digital DSLR. Recently, my husband bought me a Rollie to do some black and white images.
    I love the depth, of the images.

    I look forward to your feedback.

    Cindy Quinn
    https://www.CMQHeadshots.com

  2. #2
    Les
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    1,072

    Re: Greetings from Phoenix

    Welcome to the LF forum. If you'll get out there in the field a folder would be light enough, but in the studio you could use rail-type...these are somewhat heavier. You could start low or get something decent right of way....much depends on what you wish to spend. But, there will be other expenditures, such as lenses, film holders, loope, solid tripod, trigger release and bunch of accessories. Didn't mention light meter, since I figure you may already have one. Oh yeah, the cost of film too . Either way, there is a lot to learn about film loading, etc etc....which lenses will give you the rendition you desire....and so on. There is a lots of knowledgeable folks here, so don't be shy and do ask questions. Good luck.

    Les

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Posts
    783

    Re: Greetings from Phoenix

    Welcome!

    People use many different focal lengths for portraits, but, assuming 4x5 and traditional focal lengths for doing this type of work, I would say you want something in the 240mm to 300mm range (about 80mm to 100mm in 35mm terms.) If you go with a longer lens like the 300mm, then you'd probably want a monorail style camera. However, choice of camera might depend on if you're planning studio or field shooting. Monorails, in general, aren't as easy to carry into the field. Several folding wooden field cameras would allow good use of a 300, but they can get pricey and many are not particularly lightweight. There are many, many options...probably best to pick something inexpensive, get your feet wet, then build from there.

  4. #4

    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Posts
    535

    Re: Greetings from Phoenix

    For making portraits with a 4X5 tripod-mounted camera, it is far more convenient to have a camera which focuses with the back not just the front. With longer lenses and close subject distances, it can be very difficult to adjust for sharp focus by moving the lens standard only. This changes the lens to subject distance and may require moving the tripod or camera stand in or out. For portraits you want your subject to be comfortable and confident in your ability. To have them see you struggling with focus can be upsetting.

  5. #5

    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    St. Louis, Mo.
    Posts
    2,935

    Re: Greetings from Phoenix

    Welcome to the forum, Cindy. You have the same name as my wife!

    This is from our large format home page. https://www.largeformatphotography.i...rtrait-lenses/

    You can also look at our image sharing and discussion page for member's portraiture. They often list the lens that they used.

    I recommend choosing a lens that will give you a totally different "look" than digital so you will have more variety in your portraiture.

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Apr 2019
    Location
    Phoenix
    Posts
    5

    Smile Re: Greetings from Phoenix

    Quote Originally Posted by Alan9940 View Post
    Welcome!

    People use many different focal lengths for portraits, but, assuming 4x5 and traditional focal lengths for doing this type of work, I would say you want something in the 240mm to 300mm range (about 80mm to 100mm in 35mm terms.) If you go with a longer lens like the 300mm, then you'd probably want a monorail style camera. However, choice of camera might depend on if you're planning studio or field shooting. Monorails, in general, aren't as easy to carry into the field. Several folding wooden field cameras would allow good use of a 300, but they can get pricey and many are not particularly lightweight. There are many, many options...probably best to pick something inexpensive, get your feet wet, then build from there.
    Thank you Alan, this is really helpful information.
    Cindy Quinn
    CMQ Headshots
    Cindy Quinn
    CMQ Headshots
    Https://cmqheadshots.com

  7. #7

    Join Date
    Apr 2019
    Location
    Phoenix
    Posts
    5

    Re: Greetings from Phoenix

    Thank you Les;

    I appreciate all of this information. If you were doing studio portraits what make and model would you choose?
    Cindy Quinn
    CMQ Headshots
    Https://cmqheadshots.com

  8. #8

    Join Date
    Apr 2019
    Location
    Phoenix
    Posts
    5

    Re: Greetings from Phoenix

    Wow, Neal, really great feedback. Good to know when thinking about what brand, make, model to look at purchasing.
    What brand would you recommend?
    Cindy Quinn
    CMQ Headshots
    Https://cmqheadshots.com

  9. #9

    Join Date
    Apr 2019
    Location
    Phoenix
    Posts
    5

    Re: Greetings from Phoenix

    Thanks, Alan, I will check out those pages.
    Cindy Quinn
    CMQ Headshots
    Https://cmqheadshots.com

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