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Thread: Modern Rise of the Field Folder View Camera.

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  1. #1

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    Modern Rise of the Field Folder View Camera.

    Inspired by https://www.largeformatphotography.i...uot-5x7-Camera

    the "best" 5x7 camera rose up the noted preference of light weight field folder cameras over virtually any monorails view camera.
    This appears to be what practice of view camera images have become. From silver gelatin prints to color prints via traditional wet darkroom prints to scanned negatives then prints made from digital files to carbon prints, wet plate and a long list of alternative image making process has come much alive today.

    Rolling the large format time machine backwards, this was not always the world of large format. There was a time when apprenticeship into the ways and methods of view camera happened in Photography school often using a 4x5 Calumet or Burke & James or similar monorail view camera with a Ilex Paragon or similar lens. These were the instructional tools for learning how to view camera, how camera movements worked and all the basic skills needed to view camera. More often than not it was done under controlled and supervised conditions with a qualified instructor. Much of this was to groom photography students to have the abilities to do studio and similar view camera (monorail was THE camera of choice) work that was in demand back in then film Foto days.

    ~BIG strobes with the needed light modifies were a "thing" back then.~

    Much of this appears to have changed, many today venture into LF via curiosity after growing up with digital or curiously wanting to try LF.. The image making inertia from using essentially a box camera be it digital or film is often carried over to expectations and demands for what a view camera needs to be. Add to this the "Ansel Adams" factor of trying on the shoes of group f64 landscape photography. All good in many ways as a sizable sheet film user base means sheet film companies have a better chance of continued production of sheet film.


    Discuss...

    Bernice

  2. #2
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Re: Modern Rise of the Field Folder View Camera.

    These do fold closed into a box

    My main interest is 125 years ago, when both 5X7 plates/films were common

    As bicycles became popular so did Cycle Cameras, no cars yet

    Bikes were heavy, Cycle cameras not, they are lightweight fine woodwork

    Some even had a bit of front rise and rear swing, some stored the holders inside the camera

    Some have very good leather bellows that are soft, light tite, perhaps Red Russian leather

    I put a modern shutter in one and of course use my small Ries tripod, which is a wonderful combo

    If they were stored closed as 'Fully Cased' they barely aged at all

    They are my favorite by far

    https://www.worthpoint.com/worthoped...era-3252038263
    2022

  3. #3
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    Re: Modern Rise of the Field Folder View Camera.

    The quest was for people's opinions of what they likes in their (or imagined) 5x7 field cameras. Monorails are rarely considered 'field' cameras, but of course many of us have used them outdoors. I started by using a Linhof, a Graphic ViewII, and a couple different types of Calumet rail cameras. My 4x5 I have hiked and biked thousands of miles with is a rail camera (2.5 lbs w/ lens).

    My folding 5x7 camera, and several on that thread, are over 100 years old. All fairly light. Certainly not a modern rise. Cameras got heavy for awhile...bloated with features. Now they are swinging back to light again. Rail cameras are now more specialized tools, largely for studio work, but still used by many in the field,

    Edit;

    Monorails came very late into the photographic scene. First we had non-folding wood (studio) camera, and eventually folding wood cameras for the field. As materials and manufacturing techniques changed, metal cameras came into existence...the mono rail camera was developed.

    Materials and manufacturing methods continue to be developed and improved. After a period of heavy cameras (Wisners were beasts) and heavily assorized rail systems, new lighter field cameras have been, and continue to be developed.
    Last edited by Vaughn; 7-Apr-2021 at 08:42.
    "Landscapes exist in the material world yet soar in the realms of the spirit..." Tsung Ping, 5th Century China

  4. #4

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    Re: Modern Rise of the Field Folder View Camera.

    Quote Originally Posted by Vaughn View Post
    The quest was for people's opinions of what they likes in their (or imagined) 5x7 field cameras.
    Is it? Honestly, I after reading the OP a few times I still have no idea of what he liked to be discussed.
    Expert in non-working solutions.

  5. #5
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Re: Modern Rise of the Field Folder View Camera.

    OP likes to make us think

    for ourselves
    2022

  6. #6

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    Re: Modern Rise of the Field Folder View Camera.

    ~Based on the current LFF user base that post... how much camera discussion is Field Folder view camera centric?~

    ~Based on the current LFF user base that post... how much camera discussion is Monorail view camera centric?~


    Why?


    Bernice


    Quote Originally Posted by Havoc View Post
    Is it? Honestly, I after reading the OP a few times I still have no idea of what he liked to be discussed.

  7. #7
    Small town, South Carolina, US
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    Re: Modern Rise of the Field Folder View Camera.

    Interesting topic.. I was expecting a discussion of the evolution of field camera vs studio type cameras. And of course crossovers such as rail cameras.

  8. #8

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    Re: Modern Rise of the Field Folder View Camera.

    Today's adder...

    Given the current view camera preference by far would be a lightweight field folder view camera, does this imply the journey of view camera image making is much about the adventure of being outdoors, discovery of things serendipitous to be imaged then shared...

    or..

    Images created out of the inner world of an individuals mind?


    Bernice

  9. #9
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Re: Modern Rise of the Field Folder View Camera.

    Guilty

    I explore inner world aware

    hence my LF selfies. other oddities, a slow process

    Quote Originally Posted by Bernice Loui View Post
    Today's adder...

    Given the current view camera preference by far would be a lightweight field folder view camera, does this imply the journey of view camera image making is much about the adventure of being outdoors, discovery of things serendipitous to be imaged then shared...

    or..

    Images created out of the inner world of an individuals mind?


    Bernice
    2022

  10. #10
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    Re: Modern Rise of the Field Folder View Camera.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bernice Loui View Post
    Today's adder...

    Given the current view camera preference by far would be a lightweight field folder view camera, does this imply the journey of view camera image making is much about the adventure of being outdoors, discovery of things serendipitous to be imaged then shared...

    or..

    Images created out of the inner world of an individuals mind?
    Neither. It doesn't imply anything.

    I take my 5x7 Nagaoka into the field because it would be sheer lunacy to lug my 5x7 Sinar P. The Nagaoka is a pleasure to carry and use on the fly; the Sinar would be a nightmare of burden and hassle. OTOH, in a studio setting with a photographic task that requires a complex setup, sometimes the Sinar is a better choice. It's purely a functional decision, has nothing to do with how I was trained or what my philosophy of photography is.

    Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.

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