11x14" vs. 8x10"
Well, I am in a bit of a bind. I am looking into buying a camera to be used for wet plate photography, but I'm not sure which size I want to purchase.
I suppose, essentially, I am asking if 11"x14" is too much of a hassle and if I should settle for 8"x10". By "hassle," I mean the price of lenses for full 11"x14" coverage and availability (cameras, lenses, plate holders).
I would love to have a larger, 11"x14" plate, but I think I could settle for 8"x10" if 11"x14" equipment is A. really expensive and B. harder to come by, especially since I could purchase cheaper film for the 8"x10" camera if I wanted to use film.
I've looked around on Google, and it seems (theoretically) that they are about the same, just different sizes.
If you have any suggestions of cameras/lenses I should look into, I'd appreciate it.
Assuming that one who does wet plate will not be transporting the camera too far from studio or vehicle, size/weight is not a major make-or-break factor.
Seems like a 11x14 studio camera with an 8x10 back would be a fine way to go -- start of with 8x10 then slowly gather the equipment you need to move up to 11x14. Perhaps looking for lenses that might serve both formats.
At least with LF landscape, a bad day of photography can still be a good day of exercise.
I feel like an idiot... I did not even think about getting an 11x14 with a reducing back. That might be what I'll do.
How much do 11x14s normally weigh?
The thing here is, most vintage 11x14 cameras, even a light one like a Kodak 2d style are heavy in comparison to an 8x10. There are many more lightweight choices in 8x10, both vintage and modern construction.
Originally Posted by zrisso
Oh, I know. Weight has never been an issue for me when it came to cameras; I was just curious.
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Originally Posted by zrisso
Does this help? This is Andreas Emmel, a good friend of mine and a great photographer. He built his own 11x14 camera is is using it for pinhole and lens-based photography. He is always complaining about the weight but loves his camera. he even built his own holders! You find his images at:
For film shooters, the biggest hurdle, I think, when moving from 8x10" to 11x14" is the cost of the filmholders, but if you're shooting wetplate, that may not be so different. I would think that with wetplate the biggest issue would be the ability to pour a larger plate, but I'm not a wetplate photographer myself, so I would be interested to hear from the wetplate shooters on that.
My 1890's American Optical 11x14" field camera is an ultralight by 11x14" standards--about 15 lbs. I know someone with an 11x14" Wisner (Technical Field, if I remember correctly) that weighs 35 lbs.
the wollensak triple - 13/20/25 covers 11x14 without a problem ...
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Honestly, I found it was easier to pour the larger plates once you had some practice. 11x14 was easier than 8x10 which was easier than 4x5. Now I don't know about Zebra and his 20x24's though!
Originally Posted by David A. Goldfarb
Let's see what I've got in the magic trash can for Mateo!
Decide what you want to shoot in wet plate then see how much if any movement or enlargement you need - if none and say 1:1 (nice in 11x14") then the camera can be ridiculously simple indeed - a black box...
Yes, you'll need a fast lens to cope with bellows draw (if any). But if you avoid popular 'branded'/Petzval lenses there are a multitude of cheaper lenses that will cover 11x14" and be fast enough for sub 10sec exposures.
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