Run-and-Gun 4x5 Travel Shooting?

Discussion in 'Large Format' started by mark_tucker|2, Dec 18, 2002.

  1. I am traveling to San Miguel de Allende right after Christmas for ten days. Everything in me wants to take this 4x5 and a bunch of TMAX Readyloads. My normal "old" travel package would have been one Hasselblad body and two lenses and maybe a tube; that's it. So I know that to consider 4x5 (and tripod and holders and loupes and... and...) might be QUITE a different experience.
    The main reason reason for the trip is to shoot; it's not for leisure or margaritas. But I *am* traveling with another person, so I'm not as free "to be a slowpoke" as I normally am, when I'm on the road alone.
    #1: Do you think it's nuts to consider packing up a 4x5 and all its related stuff, during Christmas rush at airports, with current security climate?
    #2: Would you just say, "Just shut up and take the Hasselblad and enjoy yourself and don't get bogged down"?
    #3: I tend to shoot fast and move fast, more like a street shooter. The Hassie is great for this; I just leave the 202FA on automatic and shoot away (all BW neg). I just don't want to get there, and realize that I've really really made the wrong decision, where every frame takes five minutes to set up.
    #4: On the other hand, I've done the "Hassie and two lenses" route many times before. I'm itching to dig deeper and work this 4x5. Does anyone have any real-world tips for down-and-dirty, quick-on-the-move 4x5 shooting? The plan would be one Ebony body, a 150 and a 72, and BW Readyloads. That's it. Oh, and a carbon tripod.
    Any suggestions vastly appreciated. You could make a man's Christmas much more enjoyable.
  2. If you want to shoot street. If you're trying to slow down, then slow down. I'd say take the Ebony (or if you truly want down and dirty, then rent a Technika or Speed Graphic and handhold). If you can't slow down in San Miguel de Allende (what a great place!), then you are truly a Type A. ;-) Park the compadre in the zocalo with a couple of margaritas and just move around that spot. Take a break with the compadre and then find another cafe and then shoot near that spot. I'd say travelling is better with the new TSA regime and LF is LESS of a problem than before (and it wasn't so bad even then). Have a great trip.
  3. Is the other person shooting as well? Could be a huge incompatibility problem? Is the other person sitting around watching you operate a view camera? Could get you killed.
  4. Mark,

    I think taking your 4x5 on a trip with a traveling companion has disaster written all over it. I looked at your site, you are quite accomplished but there is nothing, "quick", about 4x5 photography.

    We're all different. I get nervous if someone is with me when I shoot 4x5 because it takes awhile to set up and shoot, which can lead to screw-ups. And if you shoot 4x5, there is no way around not using a tripod.

    Secondly, I don't see you gaining that much, if anything, over Hasselblad either.

    Instead of a different format, how about a different photographic vision of what you shoot.

    Merry Christmas
  5. Mark,

    Using a press or technical camera with a rangefinder is a good idea. The kind of photography you're talking about is what rangefinder Crown/Speed Graphics were made for doing. The rangefinder keeps a tripod from being an absolute necessity. Without being able to hand hold and rangefinder focus, I think you will be talking 5 minutes to set up.

    A plus for the Technika or a Wista is that it will use the same lensboards as the Ebony, so you don't have to fool around with re-mounting lenses. It folds into a sturdy box, so extra packing shouldn't be required.


  6. You should TAKE THE 4X5! It's where you're at NOW, and it's going to make YOUR trip the most meaningful for you. I've done it the other way too many times. I'll take a good Nikon outfit and never take a single picture. And when I do take some rolls with the Nikon they end up in the freezer waiting "on ice". Sorry to the rest of the world, but I enjoy looking at it upside down. Bottom line is if I can't do the pics in the way that I'm pumped up about the possibilities, I may as well not do them at all. There are of course snapshot duties that any good husband and Grandpa is responsible for. Digital. Shirtpocket digital.
  7. I think taking a companion on a photo expedition has disaster written all over it. Tried it, will never do that again.
  8. To Sorin and Bill,

    You make good points. I was very apprehensive about it. I work
    much better alone. Less anxiety about holding people up.

    You have no idea how bizarre it is that I end up traveling with this
    woman. Not worth going into here, but in the end, you just say,
    "does Jesus mean for this to happen?", and then I hold up my
    finger into the air. I guess I answered yes this time. I have never
    met her, (see, the story gets weirder and weirder), so I wrote her
    this long letter about how screwed up most photographers are,
    and even moreso when they're in "work mode" as I call it. You
    can't even talk to them; they're wandering around, looking at the
    light, mumbling something to themselves about f8 or f16, blah
    blah. I damn near made her sign a contract that she understood
    who she was traveling with. So I'd say she's properly forewarned
    and properly freaked out. But on the flip side, in Cuba, it got kinda
    nutty being there alone; it would have been nice to have
    someone to "outflow" to, and share the incredible experience of
    it. I could go on about this crazy story, but let's just say that "ten
    days ain't the end of the world"; I can do about anything for ten
    days; I've already warned her that I might lose it, and go off on my
    own, and I'm for damn sure NOT going shopping, anywhere.

    I'm sure I'll decide what I'm taking about two hours before I leave
    for the airport. I'll anguish about it for that long. I like that other
    guy's idea about just having a different vision, but with the same
    Hasselblad camera. (But MAN, it is SO easy to get spoiled to all
    this square footage of extra negative area. The Hassie negs
    almost seem like toys to me now. I know that's in the equation
    somewhere. And also not to mention, no tilts and shifts with
    Hasselblad. Everything's too good with that camera).

    Thanks for your responses. (I'm nowhere closer to an answer

    MT (twice-divorced and very single. surprised?)
  9. Mark,
    Is this other person a woman? If it is, and if you are, do you wish to stay romantically involved with this person? Is it important that this person understand that photography is a passion of yours that you are not willing to compromise on should the relationship continue?

    If it's another guy, then simply park him at a bar with pretty girls while you go off and shoot.

    The Ebony is a field camera, not a monorail, right? I say yes to the 4by5!

    (And maybe you could get your "freind" to carry the Hasselblad.)
  10. Ha... Mark, you sure make things interesting!

    I've done the same in Mexico - sometimes travel/life partners gets bummed out sometimes not... (next time will also include a 2yr old... more fun and complications - I managed to still shoot some 4x5 (and get a couple of keepers) this summer in BC with partner, 16 month old and two grandparents in tow - so it's not impossible - did get shouted and scowled at a few times though).

    You've pared down the gear, which is needed - minimalist.

    Yes, it will be a much slower way of shooting, but I think the area will lend itself to that. When travelling around with this interesting lady, use it to scout out things and places to come back to and shoot - you can do that with 4x5. Also, get up very early in the am (if you can drag yourself away...) just as things are waking up - actually, just before. Amazing light. The street sweepers are just starting work clearing the squares. The market stalls or just being set up, little old ladies are heading to church...

    You could also try the mad dogs and Englishmen routine and head out between 12 and 2 when everyone else has slowed down - nice harsh light and deep shadows.

    Be prepared to spend time chatting with inquisitive people about your camera (although being San Miguel, they will be used to weird gringo artists wandering around doing their thing - in fact, they may even be fed up! Debbie Caffery's workshop is/was down there...).

    But basically, move slower and enjoy the other parts of the trip as well. Take EW's daybooks Pt I and read about his time in Mexico while you are there...

    I have my own part of Mexico I go to enjoy just this. Sounds like you could have fun.
  11. I like the press camera idea or maybe the Littman Single is the camera for you (

    I've traveled with the 8x10" camera and my wife on the same expedition. She usually brings a book to read, and I make sure there are enough pictures of her in exotic locations to make it interesting. We've got a routine that works.

    The 4x5" is even quicker to set up, so it just depends on how tolerant your traveling companion is. If you're anxious about it, that will only make things worse, so maybe the way to go is just to make sure you've got everything set up so as to minimize setup time--use a QR on the tripod, maybe a folding hood instead of a darkcloth, keep one lens on the camera if you can, etc.

    I still like the idea of using a press camera for 4x5" on the move.
  12. Seeing in my mind's eye the shots I took in San Miguel a number of years ago, I'd say stick with the smaller format. The percentage of shots that still seem worthwhile lean heavily toward street shooting of people and only a couple of still lives. The Hasselblad seems to offer a good balance between quality and portability. You might also investigate whether any gear is available for rent in San Miguel. If so, you might be able to rent a tripod there and still bring some LF gear. In summary, to me the decision has to do with the sort of photography that will be most effective at a given location. If the destination were Mayan pyramids, I'd probably favor the 4x5 outfit.
  13. You want negative real estate AND speed and spontaneity? Get yourself a Hobo from bostick and sullivan. Hand held 5x7 and 8x10 cameras. You'll look eccentric and no one will want to rip you off because you obviously are INSANE.

  14. If you're going on your trip to shoot then I say bring the Ebony.
    Luckily the 45SU sets up and shoots very quick compared to
    some other folding cameras. Make sure that the woman you're
    travelling with knows that you will take some time setting up your
    shots and maybe suggest to her that she bring something to do
    if she's going to go with you while you shoot.

    I have a similar problem with my fiancee. She'll wait for me to
    set up and shoot with my view camera, but I wind up rushing and
    feeling anxious for making her wait. Much of the time this affects
    my shots. As a compromise, I bought a Mamiya 7. I know it
    doesn't have movements, but 6x7 is fairly close to the 6x9 real
    estate of my Ebony 23S.

    On the other hand, if you're a "run and gun" type of shooter, a 4x5
    might not be exactly the right equipment for that style of shooting.
    The Hassy seems to be a better option for travel where you're
    running around and shooting fast. I find that my work is much
    slower and more contemplative when I use the view camera.
    Ultimately, it depends on how YOU like to work.
  15. Yes Mark, pick up a Littman Single if you have a few weeks to wait for one to be handmade ... and a few extra thousand dollars lying around.

    But seriously... Just shut up and take the Hasselblad and enjoy yourself and don't get bogged down.
  16. "I'm itching to dig deeper and work this 4x5."
    Do it. You've tried the HB thing, now try the 4by5 thing. You won't know until you try. If you donn't give it a try, you'll always wonder. There are no mistakes in life, only opportunities to learn.
  17. To Bailey,<P>

    Yes, I agree about the Littman; seems like a good idea til you
    actually start using it -- hard to focus, no movements, no real way
    to focus close for portraits. And all that for $2300... No way. There
    *are* some nice images on Littman's site though, from Cuba,
    (but I wonder how the guy got the movements out of the

    I'm leaning toward the Hasselblad after reading all these
    responses. I'm starting to sweat, just sitting here at my desk,
    thinking about trying to set that 4x5 up AND try to communicate
    with people as well. <P>

    I *did* buy a gorgeous Baby SuperD that just arrived yesterday.
    Retrofitted to shoot Type 665 Polaroid PN. That would be a
    possibility too; you'd get a 3.25x4.25 neg, and it's SLR to boot.
    But then you're stuck with about two hundred negs in your
    backpack, or even worse-- dragging around a tub of Sodium
    Sulfite. The only upside, and this upside is huge -- you'd have a
    polaroid positive to give to the subjects along the way. My friend
    Frank Ward offered that up as a contribution; giving out polaroids
    goes a LONG way in the PR department. <P>

    Leaning toward:<BR>
    1 Hassie Body<BR>
    2 Lenses<BR>
    1 Tube<BR>
    Bunch of 220 BW<BR>
    I backpack<BR>
    1 pair comfortable shoes<BR>
    1 Lonely Planet book<BR>
    1 pair jeans<BR>
    3 shirts<BR>
    1 bottle Tylenol<P>

    (No checked baggage). Thank you all...
  18. "I agree about the Littman; seems like a good idea til you actually start using it ... no real way to focus close for portraits."

    Actually, what makes the Littman so popular among some fashion photographers is the close-focusing attachment. That's how you get photos like:

    "I'm starting to sweat, just sitting here at my desk, thinking about trying to set that 4x5 up AND try to communicate with people as well."

    If I need a larger negative for people/travel photography and I don't need graduated filters, I just take my TLR. If you need to really get close, you can learn to work quickly with a paramender and close-up lenses. It's pretty portable and light. But not something to consider if you don't have experience with using it.
  19. I find my "travel partner" gets annoyed when I DON'T take pictures. "We hiked all the way out here and you're not going to take a picture?" "We drove all over creation and you're NOT going to take a picture?" The 4x5 makes it a little easier. Just click the shutter and don't pull the dark slide. "See honey, I just took four pictures." Just don't teach them about the dark slide. Of course then you'll forget to pull it when you really DO want to take a shot. On my 6x6 I can't fake it as easily. Women do their faking and I do mine. It's only fair and everyone is "happy". Take the 4x5.
  20. Mark, This is a very interesting list of responses. I'm tellin' ya
    that I dragged my 8X10 Deardorff all over Yucatan one August
    with my wife and young kids. I'd simply go out shooting while the
    rest of the gang was resting. Carrying the gear makes it so you
    don't have to go to the gym to work out every day.

    I dragged a large Polaroid 665, a 4X5 pinhole, tripod and a
    couple of smaller cameras around Oaxaca for a couple of
    weeks. The best shots in retrospect are the pinhole shots.

    You might have to cut or paste that long link.

    You are a master of the square. Shake up your vision a bit and
    go for the rectangle.

    I also like the idea of just bringing all that wierd lens stuff you
    use and simply play with whatever camera on which you can
    duct tape the optics.

    Make this vacation a journey toward new ways of seeing.
    Alternatively, you might even find that you like to be with your
    traveling companion.

  21. mark, that pn film won't give good neg and prints from the same
    sheet. it is pretty much one or the other. but the idea of giving
    people prints is a great idea. maybe bring along a cheapie
    polaroid to make friends?

  22. actually, the other thing that helps is a paintyer who sketches or paints... if you though LF photography was slow!
  23. that should have been "partner who sketches...."
  24. Hobo 5x7 or 8x10 wide angle camera, or save yourself some trouble and use a Horseman 6x12 or Alpa 6x9.
  25. Frank, She's an attorney by day, smart as a whip, and her secret love is architecture and poetry. So, given that, I should take the 4x5, because as soon as she spies my out-of-plumb vertical lines on those buildings, she'll write me off immediately. I promise you guys, before I die, I will invent the Ebony SteadiCam. No tripid required. Just strap it to your chest and head out. The closest thing to this that I can think of is the twin lens GowlandFlex, but it's just a beast. I joked about the monopod idea, where you'd stand firmly with your own two feet, then extend out the third leg (monopod), and then carefully load the holder. Either that, or maybe rigging up the Tilt/Shift lens on the Littman. But the goal is the Walkaround 4x5 that would somehow be SLR; not rangefinder. It just bugs me to not be seeing what the lens is seeing; some people don't mind rangefinders, but I cannot deal with them at all. I'm too detached from the lens' view, the womp, the distortion, and the actual "feel" of the photo. I am also talking to the Camera Bellows people in England, about designing me a bellows "viewer" out of their self supporting material. The Cambo thing that I've got rigged up with duct tape is OK, not great. You can't move the hot spot around, so, when you go monkeying with movements, you can't follow the hot spot. If this self-supporting bellows material was strong enough, you could mount a 1.5x magnifier in it, and then just use your forehead to move the thing around, to follow the hot spot. -MT,
  26. Hmmmm... Just wondering if you could attach a little Leica or
    Voightlander viewer to the accessory (hot shoe) bracket on the
    Ebony for a rangefinder style framing device... Just match up
    your lens to a proper focal length viewer for framing. This might
    be somewhat of a solution.
  27. I think front tilt is an option on the Littman.
  28. Also, regarding the "bellows viewer" idea, doesn't Linhof (and maybe some other manufacturers) make a bag bellows viewer with a loupe in it for just this purpose?
  29. Hi Mark,

    I love your photos. What lenses do you use with your Hassy on your travels?

    Chris Goodwin
  30. hi mark
    sounds like a fun trip !
    from the looks of your website, you are a photographer who will
    be able to make great images no matter what sort of gear you
    will be toting along. i would say "bring the 4x5" and don't worry
    about your lady-friend. i am sure things will work out fine. but
    then again, you did mention the baby-super-d ... i would scrap
    the other cameras and bring THAT along instead. give away
    polaroids, take home negatives, sounds like a win-win situation.
    just buy a ton of glassine sleaves and unbuffered envelopes for
    your negatives at gaylord brothers before you go.
  31. Mark I live 50 minutes from San Miguel, e mail me and I will give you my phone number I can take you around to some great places other than San Miguel. As to San Miguel you got the right gear, I suppose you will have a back pack to carry all this. Really there is not much to it, people there are used to seeing this and you should have no problem. From the zocalo the cathedral is too close, you will have to use the 72 lens and even then I have never taken a shot I am happy with. the best view is from the "mirador" but you will not be bringing a lens long enough for it. Around town there are many things to photograph if you are willing to walk, it is just impossible with a car.
    The climate here is warm during the day but cold at night so I would suggest you bring a warm jacket for the evening. I think for shooting you are not crazy bringing the 4x5, you will have a great time with it.
  32. Go and buy a used Crown or Speed and just shoot like Weegee did!

    No, seriously....

    Unless you are going to NEED movements (architecture), and you REALLY want to shoot LF, go with the old press setup. I recently shot snaps at a friends Halloween party with a Speed, an old Ektar 135mm, a 545 back, two boxes of 800 speed B/W and a venerable Sunpak 511. It was really fun. I just guesstimated the distance of the subject, dialed it in on the focusing scale, and shot at f/16 and 1/400. 45 seconds later I gave the subjects a nice memento of the party (and informed them that yes, the camera DOES work....). It was really fun.

    Give it a shot.
  33. If you are planning to take N sheets of 4x5, take the Hassy and take just enough film for the same number of exposures.
  34. Go and buy a used Crown or Speed and just shoot like Weegee did! No, seriously.... Unless you are going to NEED movements (architecture), and you REALLY want to shoot LF, go with the old press setup.
    You don't understand; you must be a MAN. No commitment; no loyalty. Once you bond to a camera, you gotta be faithful, and you gotta keep it simple. I used to be the King of Gear; but now I've gone the other direction. I say, buy one camera, and shoot a million sheets with it, and get to know it like the back of your hand. Hell, it's a stretch just for me to have TWO lenses for this Ebony; I wish I just had one.
    On trips, I used to take a hassie body, an 80, a 40, and a red filter, and a ton of 220. Oh, and a good pair of shoes. I think comfortable shoes is the best camera accessory out there.
    Ive decided that I'm taking everyone's suggestion and taking the Ebony, a 75, and a 152. A red and green filter. And 120 sheets of readyload tmax100. Oh, and the Hassie with the Plungercam, in case I freak out with the 4x5.
    Thanks to everyone who contributed. This was very interesting...
  35. <<Hell, it's a stretch just for me to have TWO lenses for this Ebony I wish I just had one lens.>>


    In the interest of helping out a fellow photographer, I'd be happy to take one of your lenses off your hands. I'd even pay shipping. Anyway have a fun trip.

    BTW I have looked around you site a bit and really enjoy your work. For some reason your images seemed familiar, particularly the road trip photos. Then it struck me why. When I was younger I used to drink, well a bit too much. You have managed to capture the way the world looks in a drunken haze. The way everything gets blurry except for the one thing you’re focusing on. The way bright lights flare. Brings back memories of my misspent youth. ;-)
    This is not a shot I really do like you work very much. :)

  36. You have managed to capture the way the world looks in a drunken haze. The way everything gets blurry except for the one thing you’re focusing on.
    Uh... was that a compliment...?
  37. Yep. Sort of a stange one but yep. I did say how much I enjoyed it.
  38. >filter, and a ton of 220. Oh, and a good pair of shoes. I think
    >shoes is the best camera accessory out there

    Absolutely the best, lightest, hardwaring and most confortable... :)

    (cut and paste)
  39. I too would like to compliment you on the photos on your website! I can't wait to see what your 4by5 stuff will look like.
    Frank S.
  40. "I'm taking everyone's suggestion and taking the Ebony, a 75, and a 152. A red and green filter. And 120 sheets of readyload tmax100. Oh, and the Hassie with the Plungercam"

    It will be interesting to see how well you "shoot fast and move fast" with all that gear, as well as how well your shooting styles/schedules mesh with your company on the trip. Good luck. (At least your chiropracter can now put that last payment on his boat.)
  41. Hi Mark,

    Taking a 4x5 camera to such a trip I think is a great idea when you are going !!!!ALONE!!!! However taking such excessive gear (4x5 + Hassy) when you are travelling with someone for the first time definately runs a high risk that both of you but at least one of you will have a bad time.

    I definately would try the 4x5 thing when travelling alone especially if this is the first time you do such a Run-and-Gun 4x5 shooting.

    If I were you I would try something else on this trip. Something that you are familiar with and can rely on but at the same time try something a little different as well. You say you usually take the 80mm and the 40mm on your trips for the Hassy. I would take one of these lenses as you are familiar with it but switch the other one for something else. For example: take the 40mm but instead of the 80mm take the 110mm or 120mm or 150mm for tighter close portraits. Or the other way around take the 80mm and take the 50mm or 60mm instead of the 40mm.

    The point is that you can do the stuff you know inside out but you can also experiment with something little different and see how you like it. You would have a great time with something new. You will like some things that the new focal length provides that the usual didn't and you will also appreciate more the stuff that the usual does that the new one doesn't do well. It's always nice to see things a little different for a change.

    I really like 4x5 and would recommend taking it with you but not for this sort of trip. To much to worry about. Lot of gear, New woman, Different format, Time restraints etc.

    To sum it up short: I would take the Hassy for this one and take the 4x5 on your next trip ALONE! The point of the trip is to ENJOYING IT!

    Have a great one!
  42. Hi Mark,

    I think I saw some superb portraits of yours at the Bluebird a long time ago. Printed huge? Like 32 x 40 or so? Doc Watson. etc? You're an excellent photographer.....(I think the 4 x 5 will slow you down.)

  43. Final Verdict:

    Ebony, 55, 75, 152, 120 sheets of TMAX readyload. No
    Hasselblad. Red filter; green filter, carbon tripod.

    I have never anguished any decision more than this. But in the
    end, (like someone posted above), it's about stretching, and
    learning, and growing. Nothing in me wants to really schlep
    around this thing; it would be so easy to hop on that plane with
    the trusty Hassie and two lenses.

    Even if I only get five or six frames, I just want to go through this
    uncomfortable learning process of what I call "Treating a 4x5 like
    a Leica". It may be impossible, and after three days, you might
    only find me in the bar (at 9am), but still, I'm gonna do it.

    There's something inside of me that's wanting to get heard. I
    don't know what that part is. But I'm getting old enough to know to
    listen to small voices sometimes.

    I will report back in eleven days. I need a hug...
  44. Mark,

    I just looked at the new San Miguel de Allende portfolio on your website. Looks like the decision to go with the 4x5" didn't work out too badly. Really stunning work! Looking forward to the full report.
  45. David, Thanks for the note. I could probably write a novellette about the experience of dragging around that 4x5 on a tripod around San Miguel. The images are up at: In retrospect, I'm not sure I'd do it again. Especially for shooting people. I carried around a little cheatsheet in Spanish, and showed it to the people I approached. It explained that the camera was slow and that they'd need to hold still after I focused. I had a bunch of ridiculous hand gestures, and some badly-phrased Spanish, to try to communicate further. I'm sure I looked and sounded like an idiot. Everything I do is digital, after shooting. There is this weird thing that I don't understand, but pixels just act differently from film grain sometimes. In short, I think that at 24x30 on Epson watercolor paper, out of an Epson 9600, would look just about the same from a Hasselblad neg as from a TMAX 100 4x5 neg. Partly due to the dot gain, and dot merge, that happens on the watercolor paper. There was also a time that I thought I'd be making 44"x60" prints out of this Epson, but I've just found that that is a ridiculous size. I've settled on 24x30, and therefore, I don't think you see that much difference in 4x5, especially to put up with all the extra hassle. I'm glad I did it, but if given another RT ticket, I'd definitely take the Hasselblad and three lenses. I also do much "abuse" to the toning and "bleaching" of the images, that I think I lose whatever extra amount of quality that the 4x5 gives me. Still, there is definitely some magic mojo to shooting LF. In the desert, with a red filter, with the light just right, I got a great deal of personal satisfaction out of the sheer act of photographing with the big camera. Since everything is manual, in the end, I definitely had the feeling that I'd created something. When the Hassie is on AUTOMATIC and I'm just walking around shooting, I don't get the same kind of satisfaction. One key point here: I think there's a potential danger in fooling yourself (myself) into thinking that the photograph is "better" just because it was a pain in the ass to drag around a big camera to do it. Or, if there was a great deal of personal satisfaction from the memory of taking the photograph, and being there in that scene. In the end, it comes down to what's sitting there in the image, on the paper; that's all that really matters. A viewer could care less if it was shot with a lightweight Hasselblad, or a tripod-laden, $3700, hand-crafted Ebony, and that your back was killing you at the end of the day. Just my opinion. -MT,
  46. stunningly good Mark - the first four even more so

  47. "if given another RT ticket, I'd definitely take the Hasselblad and three lenses. "

  48. I read on this thread that someone thought the pictures on the Cuba gallery were done with a close up focus attachment, and I wanted to clarify that none of the many portraits shown in the galleries exhibited in my site have used this attachment as none of those photographers own the attachment.

    The camera is intended to be used for environmental type portraits for those who consider the surroundings as something to be included by aperture or voided by shooting wide open and even more so when using the tilt.

    In any event the lens selection of 110mm-150mm on 4x5 is best used for portraits at 3-4 ft as if closer you would get a distortion anyway and the neg is so big that you can easily crop and while maintaining a safe distance get a nice portrait which will be as shot with a normal lens.

    You can get as close as 1 ft when using the ground glass but I believe the lenses are too wide to get that close anyway unless one wants to use distortions for editorial purposes.

    The camera works best when used paparazzi style a la Jackie O, the idea is a synergistic apparatus for an inclusive/ environmental approach , it is nothing but a snapshot camera.

    I believe that what was referred to as "portraits"( refers to a 180mm-210mm lens which is too long to be included in a light rig as the l45s but then again you maybe able to shoot full head shots with a 180mm lens on a different camera which will look more normal on a full frame but no Rf works that close on 4x5 on any camera so you are back at ground glass and 3-4 pounds heavier already.

    Yes the Littman is Limited but the fact is that for Rf photography
    on extreme close-ups they all are,

    I have had great luck shooting tight 180mm /210mm on super D and on Gowlandflex but neither , practical or portable ways to shoot, Lf in a way has always a compromise on one end of the spectrum and I think its not a problem unless one expects that 1 camera has to do all of it, well none do, some are portable and spontaneous as the Littman and some are great for long lens portraits, and some are great View cameras as The Linhoff master tech and others.

    On a 180mm lens on 4x5 the bellows travels a couple of inches between
    5ft (min distance) and infinity but 3x that much between 1-5 ft therefore the close-up cam would have to be a separate one than the
    regular rf cam and it isn't practical to make or combine.

    My interest in the coupled parallax rangefinder project was to find a way to be able to get Frank Kappa type shots on large format and that required mobility and synergy .and closeness is subjective , I believe you are so much closer and communicate much more when the environment can be selected and included rather than edited out thru a long lens.

    Anyway,on Run-and-Gun 4x5 Travel Shooting would not want to edit out the surroundings otherwise why travel?
  49. Did you ask her? Maybe she likes you to take your time and have lots of movements. Maybe she prefers the Swedish touch. If you really can't be a "slowpoke" then maybe you should just use your point&shoot.

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