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  1. #11
    noseoil's Avatar
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    Dorothy, just a couple to add, but theme and variation only. I check to make sure the shutter is closed by using a cable release to "take" the picture after composing. A dry run, as it were, before the film gets anywhere near the camera is my best way of checking the shutter, aperture and basic shot. This has saved me some film and anxiety. Once the film goes in the camera, you have everything set and just have to pull the slide, shoot and put it back in.

    How will you meter? If you've been using a 35mm slr, by all means, take it with you as it is familiar and won't be a distraction from the Crown. If hubby has a spot meter, it might take a bit of getting used to as, the first time I used mine, it was just confusing. Added another layer to the already "mass confusion" I was dealing with, but your brain may be better organized than mine.

    I use a 4" x 5" framing device (a mat board will work with a string or stick attached for the focal length) which matches your lens is a simple tool and worth the effort. Look at the image without using the camera at all, just a simple "window" works well to see the scene first. If it is what you want, set up and shoot.

    Have fun! You will love your first sheet of film.

  2. #12

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    You probably already know this but with the film holder in the portrait orientation, long side up and down, and the open end where you slide the film in up, notches should be on the right. (Upper right hand corner) When I first used 4x5 I assumed landscape orientation which cause me to load the film wrong side to the lens

  3. #13

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    If you like landscapes, learn front tilt because you will appreciate the results (shifting plane of focus enables both really near & far objects to be in focus). Unlike most field & rail LF cameras, the Crown Graphic is somewhat cumbersome in front tilt movement. Pull the lens out onto the front bed, push on two side latches while depressing the bed (dropping the front bed). Then raise the lens/front standard to point where parallel to back & lens covers evenly the ground glass. Then you can use the ground glass to determine how much front tilt to use. If shooting similiar scenes, I frequently leave it in this position for much of the outing.

    With so many things to do with your hands, I've opted for a pair of high-powered (3 or better) reading glasses for focussing.
    van Huyck Photo
    "Progress is only a direction, and it's often the wrong direction"

  4. #14
    Dorothy Blum Cooper's Avatar
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    You all are great! Thanks so much for the tips/advice (and humor Appreciate it all!

    I'd hoped to get out some today with the Crown, but ran out of time. If not during this week...then the weekend will be my 'get out and shoot' day(s).

    Again...I appreciate the posts to my question. Thanks to all!!!!

    Dorothy--

  5. #15

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    a Polaroid holder and some film will be a great aid in giving you instant feedback. This will shorten the learning curve considerably.

    steve immons

  6. #16

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    Steve has a great idea. I wish I had used one on my first foray. Instant gratification is great.
    Technological society has succeeded in multiplying the opportunities for pleasure, but it has great difficulty in generating joy. Pope Paul VI

    So, I think the "greats" were true to their visions, once their visions no longer sucked. Ralph Barker 12/2004

  7. #17
    Dorothy Blum Cooper's Avatar
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    a Polaroid holder and some film will be a great aid in giving you instant feedback.
    So that would be the 545? Would like to know more about the holder as well. Thanks again for the help!!

    Dorothy--

  8. #18
    Alex Hawley's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by steve simmons
    a Polaroid holder and some film will be a great aid in giving you instant feedback. This will shorten the learning curve considerably.
    Not trying to throw a blanket on the polaroid idea. I did it too when I got my first 4x5. But I found the polaroid film got expensive real fast. I got more out of using a roll film back for just learning the camera. There's no difference in the way film is exposed for LF. Exposure is exposure is exposure.

    You also need to learn how to develop sheet film and that can only be done by doing it. I went with the tray method. At first I thought it would be daunting but it really isn't, especially with 4x5.

    No matter which film holder you use, polaroid, roll, or sheet, they all have dark slides. DON'T FERGET TO PULL THE DARK SLIDE. A maxim we all eventually learn the hard way.
    Semper Fi & God Bless America
    My Photography Blog

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