Newbie rant, LF is too obscure
I am new to MF and LF and a retired mechanic who shot Sunny 16 Pentax for decades. I have become smitten with LF. I am sad I did not find it much earlier. But the lack of information on not ancient cameras, accessories and less so lenses is astounding. I know how to use the LF camera, develop the film and enlarge it, but finding hardware information and cameras parts is very difficult. It is like restoring motorcycles before the Internet. Futile.
Yes, many of you provide great advice on many topics, but trying to find out camera history is tough. Deardorff has a nice site. I wish is was deeper and included an encyclopedia of Deardorff minutia. Yes, I am an insane collector. It is suggested to search APUG and there is much to learn here, but much is not here. The forums are full of short replies with a link to long lost websites. It may seem redundant to spell out in each post explicitly what we are discussing, but these lost websites are absolutely no help.
I am no better, but I have just begun. I collect Horseman and Mamiya. I am starting on B&H. I am fond of Chicago made anything. I find eBay listings have more history than anywhere and one can learn some expensive lessons only by buying them. Fair enough.
I know many of you learned the hard way. I also know most LF users decry the abandonment of the oeuvre. It is an Art form and the process is just as important as the product or image. I know each of us must love the process or we would no longer do it.
Where do we go from here?
http://www.largeformatphotography.info/ This site has Q&A fora.
http://www.cameraeccentric.com/ Old catalogues, American and European.
There's info. out there, you just have to dig.
I have never taken a photograph with camera company information, collections, charts, history, forums, etc. I have always used a camera, tripod, lens and film...that is the 'here' I go from. Why and where I go are the important things. How I go does influence the destination, but if I worry too much about the how (or even the why), I will never get anywhere. Sometimes one just needs to stop stressing over the how and just do...and let the how take care of itself.
At least with LF landscape, a bad day of photography can still be a good day of exercise.
When I get a nice bit of older equipment which I really like, I want to know the history of who designed it, who made it, and so on. Hence my screen name.
Originally Posted by Vaughn
Hi Randy, It sounds like you are in Chicago. We have a group called the Midwest Large Format Asylum and have been meeting once a month for LF outings for about ten years. Our center is Chicago and here's a link to our forum. http://www.deepthought.com/smf/index.php
We have no rules or organized junk except our annual print show, the outings are 100% informal..
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LF seems to me like my experience with ham radio: At first contact it seems too complex... so I joined a club. Lotsa great people, eager to help. After a while the complexity drops off, and you will be offering help to others.
Originally Posted by E. von Hoegh
Mark Barendt, Beaverton, OR
"We do not see things the way they are. We see things the way we are." Anaïs Nin
Originally Posted by wy2l
Geez, way less complex than electric and digital cameras!!😜
Why would it be harder than any other equipment niche. People refurbish old boats, cars, and motorcyles and have fun doing it. There's an entire glossy magazine devoted to view cameras, more
than one web forum, a number of manufacturers still in the business, and plenty of living practitioners. It is less complicated than with smaller cameras because you can fix most things in
either a decent woodshop of machine shop. No redundant electronic fooishness to worry about either. Simple and elegant. Plenty of info out there for a patient collector too - used bookstores,
web info sites, simply asking for old catalogs etc to be copied ... I don't understand the frustration.
E. Von Hoegh was a lens inventor who worked for the Goerz Optical Co. Around the turn of the 20th century.
Originally Posted by markbarendt