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  1. #1

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    Do you move because you can?

    I have 2 view cameras, a Speed Graphic and a Toyo monorail, both 4x5, the Toyo is usually on the short rail so they could use the same lenses. When I'm using the press camera I may use a little rise, and maybe some tilt, but often it is a straight shot. With the Toyo I sometimes tweak everything. I'm not sure if I'm only doing that because I can, or if the shot really needs it. I've looked at "real" field cameras to replace the Graphic, but I wonder if I'm just geeking the details, and I really don't need to replace anything.

    So, have you ever you ever lost a shot because you lacked enough movements to get it? Does the field camera you have not satisfy because it lacks the ability to do what?

  2. #2
    Tom1956's Avatar
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    I'm buying an SSG, getting rid of all the others but my 8x10 for X-Ray film. Most movements are because you can. But the front ones are most used (to me).

  3. #3

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    I was doing a macro(ish) shots of some stuff in my garden the other day. I raised the front, then I didn't like the view, so I raised the back too. Could have just as easily raised the column on my tripod, but for some reason raising both sort of justified in my mind using a view camera, or as you said "geeking the details".
    An awful lot of electrons were terribly inconvenienced in the making of this post.

  4. #4

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    I'm going to say a qualified yes--I have lost a shot because of the lack of movement by my Shen-Hao PTB 4x5. I was trying to take a shot of a creek when the light was just right. As I was focusing the scene, I noticed a large boulder that kept creeping into the frame, so I started tilting the front and back to include it. The rock was right in front of me and the main tree I was initially focusing on was in the background. When I developed the negatives (I made a couple), there was terrible vignetting. I suspect it was because the tilts put the image outside the image circle. The good news is that the creek is still there, so I get to try again Next time I will step back some to reduce the need for so much tilt.
    Bob Walberg

    The fix is in!

  5. #5
    Tom1956's Avatar
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    And besides that, if you're maxing out your movements, you're maxing out your wallet to pay for the lens that allowed it to happen. A Symmar 210 can cover all an old Calumet heavy long-rail model can do. But you'll likely never do all that. These days they photoshop the stuff to make up for lack of movement in the advertising biz.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dr Croubie View Post
    I was doing a macro(ish) shots of some stuff in my garden the other day. I raised the front, then I didn't like the view, so I raised the back too.
    I'm kind of relieved to find out I'm not the only one!

    -NT
    Nathan Tenny
    San Diego, CA, USA

    The lady of the house has to be a pretty swell sort of person to put up with the annoyance of a photographer.
    -The Little Technical Library, _Developing, Printing, And Enlarging_

  7. #7
    Tom1956's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dr Croubie View Post
    I was doing a macro(ish) shots of some stuff in my garden the other day. I raised the front, then I didn't like the view, so I raised the back too. Could have just as easily raised the column on my tripod, but for some reason raising both sort of justified in my mind using a view camera, or as you said "geeking the details".
    But see--if you were in the advertising beezwax, and the customer was standing there, you'd have looked mighty important doing it. Oh, excuse me--"client". The advertising "client", as opposed to "the customer" who pays the bills.

  8. #8
    kintatsu's Avatar
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    I've found I use my movements quite a bit. Not necessarily large movements, just general stuff for composition and focus. Making a few movements prior to settling into the shot allows me to see more possibilities.

    It seems to allow me more freedom to get the image I want. Yes, I’ve lost shots because of it. One time, I was shooting some leaves on the ground and a bent tree trunk and just couldn’t get the focus right. After giving up on all the angles, I just took one and it didn’t look right to me. Probably because of all the other tries prior.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by jerrybro View Post
    I have 2 view cameras, a Speed Graphic and a Toyo monorail, both 4x5, the Toyo is usually on the short rail so they could use the same lenses. When I'm using the press camera I may use a little rise, and maybe some tilt, but often it is a straight shot. With the Toyo I sometimes tweak everything. I'm not sure if I'm only doing that because I can, or if the shot really needs it. I've looked at "real" field cameras to replace the Graphic, but I wonder if I'm just geeking the details, and I really don't need to replace anything.

    So, have you ever you ever lost a shot because you lacked enough movements to get it? Does the field camera you have not satisfy because it lacks the ability to do what?
    No, never. I use a Linhof STIV 4x5 and a Deardorff V8 8x10; if you find you are always using extreme movements on typical scenes, it is possible you do not understand the principles behind their (movements) use - I find that moderate movements almost always suffice. One of the very few instances I did use a lot of displacement was a tabletop scene on 8x10 (Deardorff V8, what would now be called a field camera) of pocketwatches photographed on a receding plane, the watches nearest the camera were about 2/3 lifesize on the film and the scene called for a fair amount of front and back tilt, as well as extension, but nowhere near the limits of the camera.

  10. #10
    Shawn Dougherty's Avatar
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    My first 8x10 was a Korona View without front tilt... I really missed having that and didn't keep the camera long because of it. Not only do I find a certain amount of movement necessary for achieving the depth of field I sometimes require but I also love the ability to simply adjust the composition a bit one way or the other without fiddling with the tripod.

    And then sometimes I'll grab the RB67 and make due without them... But yeah, if I'm going to the trouble of using a view camera it's not worth it to me without a certain number of movements available.
    Last edited by Shawn Dougherty; 12-13-2013 at 09:44 AM. Click to view previous post history. Reason: typo

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