fishing for the long and skinny view

Discussion in 'Large Format Cameras and Accessories' started by mark, May 10, 2004.

  1. mark

    mark Member

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    Okay, drew up preliminary plans for 7x17 and realized that that sucker is pretty big. I'm a visual learner. It is quite doable, and to tell you the truth it does not seem to be that hard. On a down side the expense of running the camera are going to be a pain in the wallet. This will have to fall onto the back burner. I am still looking for that long skinny view though.

    Here is the question. Do any of you shoot 4x10? If so how do you like it? Are the contact prints of a viewable size? Last of all, have any of you shot color film in this format?

    Looking at the cheap older 8x10's on the net makes this seem really doable.
     
  2. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member

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    I occasionally shoot 4x10" by using a half-darkslide mask on my 8x10". A 4x10" seems like something that could be framed and put on a bookshelf or held in the hand, while a 7x17" seems like something that could be framed and displayed on a wall, and 8x20" feels like something that could be displayed on a wall in a large room.

    If you want to get a feel for 4x10", try shooting panoramic with an APS camera. My father-in-law has one of those and just loves to shoot panoramic, and the drugstore prints are usually 4x10".
     
  3. George Losse

    George Losse Member

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    Mark,

    I've shot 4x10 in Black and white. I contact printed in both Silver and Platinum materials. I never did try color with the format. I've exhibited and sold contact prints in this format in the past.

    I mostly shot the format when I could only get 12x20 film for my 8x20 camera. I didn't want to waste the rest of the film that was cut off. I really haven't shot 4x10 in the last couple of years since the 8x20 cut film was available.

    I modified a few older 8x10 holders to hold the 4x10 sheet in the middle of an 8x10 holder.
     
  4. noseoil

    noseoil Member

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    Why not just use 4x5 with a cut darkslide, then enlarge to your heart's content? This is only slightly more than a threefold enlargement. If money is a consideration, why are you toying with 7x17? The new enlarging head for azo would make enlarging very possible and much cheaper than the camera, film, holders, etc.
     
  5. mark

    mark Member

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    no darkroom, no place to put a darkroom, no access to a darkroom. I want negs that can also be used for alt processes.
     
  6. Deckled Edge

    Deckled Edge Member

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    For years I shot 4x10 using a cut darkslide and pencil marks on the ground glass. Then I realized what the slots along the edges of the camera back were for. Strips of black wood slide in these grooves to mask 4x10 (or 5x8, vertically). Using the masking strips is much easier, as composition and masking are done in one step, and you only need the regulation 8x10 darkslide.
    As for size. I am a long-time 8x10 (4x10) user who just got back from an extensive shoot in the Southwest. Film burned:
    11x14: 55
    4x5 Readyload: 30
    8x10: 0
    Big negatives rule. (but, standing on the edge of 500 foot drops on windy cliffs edges requires smaller negatives, which can be enlarged).
     
  7. mwtroxell

    mwtroxell Member

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    What type of camera was this for? My 8x10 Agfa had a 4x10 picece of wood in the carrying case that came with it. I wondered what this was for but just put it back in the case.
     
  8. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member

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    Deardorffs often have those wooden masks. They were designed to let you do portraits four poses to a sheet as well as banquet/pano formats.
     
  9. Deckled Edge

    Deckled Edge Member

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    David is right, and my camera is indeed a Deardorff, but the slots exist on my Kodak 2D, and I have seen them in B&J and Korona. My Deardorff has a thin strip of spring steel inside one vertical and one horizontal slot. This tensions the wooden strip which has a short tenon on one end and a longer tenon on the other to slide in and out of the slots. I'm sure any carpenter could make a wooden piece for you. Paint it flat black like the originals and be certain it is just tight enough in the slots that it will stay in the "up" or "down" position.
     
  10. mwtroxell

    mwtroxell Member

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    After reading this thread last night, I checked my 8x10 Agfa and it has the strip of steel springs around the inside of the back. The 4x10 slot fits inside the spring loaded groove. I've been wondering how to use the 4x10 strip since I got the camera about 4 months ago.
     
  11. Aggie

    Aggie Member

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  12. Donald Miller

    Donald Miller Member

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    Another way of approaching the panoramic view is to divide an existing format in half along the other (long) dimension. In the case of 8X10 this would create a 5X8 negative. This aspect ratio is more nearly that of the "Golden Mean" (1.61 to 1).

    This has been done with a couple of film formats that we have today. For instance the 12X20 format is 20X24 divided and 7X11 format is 11X14 divided. Both of these formats are also very near the "Golden Mean" aspect ratio.

    On the other hand the 8X20 format is 16X20 divided on the short dimension. To me the 16X20 if divided along the long dimension to provide a 10X16 print is more pleasing. The latter division would also provide a "Golden Mean" aspect ratio.

    This gives a very nice aspect ratio that affords some of the panoramic appearance and is still not overly elongated. I think that this would be a print that could be framed and presented without enlarging.
     
  13. mark

    mark Member

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    Beauty is in the eye of the beholder I guess. I do not find the 7x11, 5x8, or even 12x20 formats to be more pleasing than any other. The golden mean is an interesting phenomenon. There are lots of them out there.

    The "panoramic view"(long and skinny) fits the way I see. For me it takes the scene apart and frames the world in the same way my glasses frames do.

    Aggie. The 7x17 camera is well out of my league price wise. The reinvestment in lenses to cover would be just too much. Someday I will have one. Right now I almost have the plans for a 5x12 and dedicated 4x10 drawn up. Since I already have a lens that will cover these formats they are much more doable. I think making the camera and film holders will be fun. This will be the first summer where I have no camera to work on. SO I might as well start another several year project, right.