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Thread: Hand held shooting

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Apr 2004
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    21

    Hand held shooting

    Hi All,

    I'm new to large format (5x4 Linhoh Technica V), and looking for do's and don't's regarding hand held shooting, street scenes, people etc.

    Everything is appreciated.

    Regards,

    Johan

  2. #2

    Hand held shooting

    Johan, I shoot with a Crown Graphic Camera, never use a tripod with it, i stand as comfortable as possible, with the elbows as close to the body as possible, when necessary wiyh my back to the wind. good luck

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Posts
    176

    Hand held shooting

    Johan,

    In addition to the now elderly graphic line of cameras, both Linhof and Wista offer new cameras with rangefinder focusing systems. Though not essential, these devices make hand-held shooting a lot more effective. The Hobo Camera, made by Bostick and Sullivan is an interesting wide-angle large format camera that is also designed to be hand held.

  4. #4
    Whatever David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
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    Mar 2000
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    Honolulu, Hawai'i
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    Hand held shooting

    I also use my Tech V hand held. We've had a few good threads on this topic recently, but I'll be darned if the search engine can actually find them. Here are a couple that I could turn up by remembering who started them:

    http://largeformatphotography.info/lfforum/topic/383219.html#383219

    http://largeformatphotography.info/lfforum/topic/385192.html#385192

    http://largeformatphotography.info/lfforum/topic/386374.html#386374

    More to the point:

    Grafmatic film holders (or the new Fuji Quickchange) are great in general, and particularly for handheld shooting.

    I usually hold the camera with my left hand on the ergonomic grip and my right hand palm up under the bed where my thumb and forefinger can easily reach the right focus knob, left foot back slightly and pointed left and right foot forward more or less under the camera and pointed straight out..

    When shooting handheld, I usually use Tri-X at EI 640 in Acufine.

    If I haven't been shooting with the Technika handheld for a while, then my most common mistake is forgetting to focus. I don't ever seem to make the other common rangefinder mistakes like shooting with the lenscap on or failing to advance the film or pull the darkslide or failing to stop down the lens or set the right shutter speed, but watch out for those too, and don't forget to focus!

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Jan 2001
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    4,590

    Hand held shooting

    If you have that silly "Anatomical Grip" get rid of it and replace it with the plain hand strap, which will make the camera much more stable for hand holding. Keep your elbows fully pressed against your body (you will have to work on this, as it's not a natural position), and support the camera with the heel of your right hand UNDER the front door, and reaching to the shutter release with your index finger. Try not to hold it very long before exposing, as your muscles will tire and you're more lilely to shake the camera. If possible, try to find someting to lean against (either you or the camera) to help steady it. And don't laugh at this, but do like Cartier-Bresson, and get a set of dumbells and work out with your arms every day to strengthen them.
    Wilhelm (Sarasota)

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Posts
    9,472

    Hand held shooting

    You wouldn't by any chance be a press photographer following the growing trend of using 4x5 instead of Canon EOS digitals now would you ? Will the Aero Ektar 172mm/2.5 question come next?

    IMHO, the most important thing is using fast film - you need every stop you can get, and pushing B&W or even E6 at least a stop will buy you a lot of room for error. Camera shake is less of a problem as you might think, because you aren't enlarging as large. But having correct focus is the critical part, especially if you are trying to get the David Burnett short focus look.

    Also, having "Press" shutters on your lenses speeds up the process, and you'll soon find that the old timers used 135mm and 90mm lenses for good reason.

  7. #7

    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    21

    Hand held shooting

    Hi All,

    Thanks for responses.

    regards,

    Johan

  8. #8
    Whatever David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
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    Mar 2000
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    Hand held shooting

    The ergo grip with the thumb operated release is a little odd at first, and the plain strap does make the kit more compact, but personally, I think the grip works if you angle it back right, so that your wrist is in a comfortable position with your elbow pressed against the side of your body. Loosen the large screw on the side of the cylindrical piece that connects the grip to the connector to adjust the angle.

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