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Thread: Several Questions... Including Film Scarcity

  1. #41
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    Re: Several Questions... Including Film Scarcity

    If you are a pro, especially in the technical ends of photography you described, I suspect even more than ever you'll appreciate a precision camera--all metal, designed for precise, repeatable work. The Sinar with both a 5x7 and 4x5 rear standard (plus appropriate bellows) sounds like the best option, especially given your willingness to have the film scanned and printed by others. The F2 is the lightest of these, but you may struggle to find an F2 5x7 rear standard--I think the F series was only made in 4x5 and 8x10. The Norma is only a bit heavier and is better made, but a little less up to date. And a 5x7 rear standard of Norma vintage will be easier to find, too. Of course, there is absolutely nothing preventing you from putting a 5x7 Norma-era back on a much newer 4x5 F2--such is the interchangeability of Sinar components. The P series is the most precise, but it really is heavy stuff.

    Richard means well but don't listen to him. A photograph is a picture made using a camera. If you hire a printer, and you come to trust that printer to realize your intentions, that's what it's all about. We have several custom printers on this forum who make their living doing just that, and their clients are photographers. Sometimes I wish I could afford to be one of them.

    Rick "good luck and have fun" Denney

  2. #42
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    Re: Several Questions... Including Film Scarcity

    Quote Originally Posted by RichardSperry View Post
    Photograph means a light drawing or a drawing of light.

    Until its printed, there is no photograph. How can you be a photographer without the photograph? And how can you be a photographer when someone else makes your photograph for you?

    I sort of understand, I have no interest in matting or framing...that really is tertiary work.

    But until its a photograph, a print, all you have is a piece of plastic no one wants to see(a negative may be a light drawing but who wants to just look at your negatives). A photographer who is not intimately involved with the printing of his or her photos, is really just a camera clicker to me. To each his own, I guess.
    That's harsh. While I believe we're on the same page, I also wouldn't necessarily agree that print presentation is to be left to others. So you see, there are many pages to the book – a book which is being continually rewritten by new techniques and viewpoints.

  3. #43

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    Re: Several Questions... Including Film Scarcity

    I may have a 57 Norma outfit to sell in a couple weeks....

  4. #44

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    Re: Several Questions... Including Film Scarcity

    Quote Originally Posted by RichardSperry View Post
    Photograph means a light drawing or a drawing of light.

    Until its printed, there is no photograph. How can you be a photographer without the photograph? And how can you be a photographer when someone else makes your photograph for you?

    I sort of understand, I have no interest in matting or framing...that really is tertiary work.

    But until its a photograph, a print, all you have is a piece of plastic no one wants to see(a negative may be a light drawing but who wants to just look at your negatives). A photographer who is not intimately involved with the printing of his or her photos, is really just a camera clicker to me. To each his own, I guess.
    There are plenty of highly regarded photographers who had other people do their printing.

  5. #45

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    Re: Several Questions... Including Film Scarcity

    I was back in Cambridge ( the US one that is) for a college reunion last Spring and there was a great Andreas Feininger exhibition at one of the museums. They had quite a few of his photographs on display and I was surprised at how many of them were less than 5 x 7 inches in size - many around 3 or 4 inches square. And very effective at that size. I think the photograph itself should dictate the scale at which it's printed and I've seen quite few fine photos that were contact printed from 6 x 6 cm negs.

    I seem to remember that St Ansel once said something to the effect that one significant photo a month was quite good indeed.

  6. #46
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    Re: Several Questions... Including Film Scarcity

    Quote Originally Posted by Ed Richards View Post
    For color? D800E. I gave up LF color a long time ago. Black and white, wonderful. Color, not worth the time and trouble and MONEY. I was just reminded by looking at Galen Rowell's work, and that huge book, Himalayas, of the wonderful work done on 35mm film. If you live in a really big international city, you might be able to get LF color film processed for a few more years. If you have a lot of money to burn, then go to it. Figure you will need to shoot about 1000 sheets to get good at it, multiple that by cost of the film and processing, and make sure you are comfortable with the number. Then think about how you are going to get it printed. Optical by someone else? Take that number you just calculated and double it to cover making prints to learn what is going on. Optical yourself - you need a big, expensive darkroom for big color, and lots of time. Or go digital for printing. You will need at least a 24" wide printer to begin to make prints big enough to show the advantage of LF over a D800E. You can have someone else make your prints instead. Then figure drums scans at $100+ per negative and that same big additional number for printing. If you are rich, none of this matters. If not, think hard. Why are you going to make those huge prints? Are you a successful photographer who is already selling huge prints? Then ignore me, because you have already figured out the game and I would love to know your secret.:-) If not, and you are not rich, are you sure this makes sense?
    Quote Originally Posted by Brian C. Miller View Post
    Is it, really? D800E: $3,300. The OP is looking for a used LF camera, so I'm guessing $300-$500, plus another $200-$300 for a decent lens, so good to go for $500, plus a few accessories like film holders. But since he's interested in 6x17, then it's roll film all the way for that, which is of course significantly cheaper than sheet film. Then flatbed scanning for some decent pics, and maybe he'll pop for a drum scan for something significant.

    Now, what would that 6x17 equivalent panoramic crop be like on a D800? That would be 7360 x 1733, so 12,754,880 pixels. I'm sure that even a cheesy roll film scan can coax out a higher resultion than that, let alone what Lenny can do. Sure, he can do a panoramic multiple capture. Personally, I like to get the whole thing in one go, which eliminates a lot of problems. (And if he does panoramic with a digital camera, why spring for a D800?)
    Before I would suggest a D800E I would suggest an RB67. You lose movements either way.

    I have some 4x5 color film I am slowing using up, but when it's gone I don't plan to buy any more. It's too expensive (I can afford it, but it's not worth it for the slight improvement over 6x7 in my roll film back) and too much hassle. I shoot color in 120 and 35mm now.

    But I'm not the OP. I agree that if you want to shoot color in LF, 4x5 is the way to go for both availability and, compared to larger formats at least, affordability. Note that you CAN also cut down 8x10 film to 5x7 if you must, and Shen Hao makes a 5x8 camera for shooting 8x10 you just whack down the middle. Still, 4x5 would be my choice if I were going to shoot color in LF regularly.
    My Flickr page

    Most blest is he who lives free and bold
    and nurses never a grief,
    for the fearful man is dismayed by aught,
    and the mean one mourns over giving.
    - Hávamál verse 48

  7. #47
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    Re: Several Questions... Including Film Scarcity

    Quote Originally Posted by speedfreak View Post
    My two cents... LF is awesome for many reasons and I think it fits certain personalities better than others. You sound like the type that would enjoy it! I would think that investing in a light weight 5x7 (chamonix, cahnam) with a 4x5 reducing back and 6x17 roll film back would be the way to go. Sure, you can get a 6x17 back for the 4x5 but you are then somewhat limited with lens selections. This way you can shoot: 6x6, 6x7, 6x9, 4x5 b+w and color, 5x7 b+w (color if you can find it), 6x10, 6x12, 6x17 with the roll film back. That is a shit load of options! Almost too many come to think of it. Plus, those options are gonna cost ya!

    Screw it! Get a solid metal 4x5 camera. Maybe a Toyo 45a (a2), or a Linhof Tech iv (v). Plenty rigid and more than enough movements for 95% of what is shot. The camera and a couple lenses will set you back no more than ~$1500. If you find your shooting ALOT of wides and NEEDING tons of rise, buy the Sinar F, bag bellows, and adapter lens board and now your prepared for anything.
    If your scanning, shoot two frames, stitch and crop for 6x17. Easy peasy!
    While the idea of a 5x7 with reducing back makes a certain sense, the Tech IV is not going to do what this list seems to imply. It doesn't really handle short lenses that well (I have a Tech III and wish it did better in this regard, it's one of the things I want my next camera to do) and is going to be limited in terms of lens selection for the roll film formats 6x6-6x9. It handles a 90mm ok, and that's fairly wide on 4x5 (about like 28 or a bit shorter on 35mm but with a different aspect ratio so it doesn't translate directly) but only a normal on 6x7, maybe very slightly wide on 6x9.
    My Flickr page

    Most blest is he who lives free and bold
    and nurses never a grief,
    for the fearful man is dismayed by aught,
    and the mean one mourns over giving.
    - Hávamál verse 48

  8. #48

    Re: Several Questions... Including Film Scarcity

    Quote Originally Posted by Greg Miller View Post
    There are plenty of highly regarded photographers who had other people do their printing.
    I know.
    Like I said, to each his own.

    People are free to place value on whatever they wish to. Humans are strange and funny creatures that way.
    There is a documentary, Herb and Dorothy Vogel, the Portrait of the Collector. They had a 6 inch piece of rope screwed to the wall, and it's regarded as art; it has value because they valued it.

    https://s3.amazonaws.com/ksr/assets/...jpg?1337891563

  9. #49
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    Re: Several Questions... Including Film Scarcity

    Quote Originally Posted by ROL View Post
    ...Shirakawa's Himalaya, was shot with both MF (Pentax 6x7) and 35mm. The large ivory clasped portfolio version was perhaps my first photographic "art book" acquisition.
    Keeping to my policy of only quoting from the "best" (), while delving into my XMAS gift book, Andrea Stillman's, Looking at Ansel Adams, its pages brightened by direct sunlight streaming in through a nearby window... on page 63, a photo of the Adams' standing in their Carmel living room... to the right a bookcase, flanking the large stone fireplace... between the bust and the lamp... not at first conspicuously discernible... there it was. Himalayas.

    Great minds...

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