I find myself using mostly wide angles with 4x5 (APO-Grandagon 55mm/4.5) and 5x7 (Super Symmar XL 110mm/5.6).
Time will tell which lenses I'll end up preferring on my new 8x10 - but I suspect they will mostly be 260mm and shorter focal lengths.
With MF (6x12cm, 6x9, 6x7 and 6x6) I find myself using the APO-Grandagon 55mm/4.5 and Super Symmar XL 110mm/5.6 about 90% of the time. I also shoot some macro stuff with my 150mm Apo Rodagon.
I rarely shoot 35mm any more, but when I do, about 80% of my pictures are with my 16mm, 18mm, 20mm and 28mm wide angles. The other 20% are taken with my 60mm and 100mm macro lenses and my 100mm - 300mm Zeiss zoom lens.
Everything is analog - even digital :D
I picked up a used Toko (yes Toko not Toyo) from a local camera store. It's a field camera, with front rise, front swing, rear tilt, rear shift and rear swing. Much like a Wista. In fact it even came with a Wista focusing screen (which leads me to believe many of these cameras come out of the same factory).
My first lens was a 210mm. I quickly bought a 90mm because I use WA a lot in 35 and MF. My next lens was a 150 (near normal ie: 50mm in 35), then a 65mm. Just had to have that really wide look ya know. Then I finally got a 300mm (near 100mm in 35).
At first I used the 90 the most followed by the 150. Then it was the 150 followed by the 90 (poor 210 was ignored). Then I started using the 210 and now use the 300 the most. Go figure!
How I shoot in LF, or better yet how I see when shooting LF is different than when I haul out the TF or MF stuff.
I picked the field camera up for about $400 and most of the lenses are from eBay. I've never had a problem todate (knock head).
So I guess what I am saying is don't try and equate what you do in 35 to what you will end up doing in LF. My advise would be to start off with a 150mm lens and go from there. See if you can borrow some of your buddies LF lenses while you are out shooting together to see how you like them.
BTW Kev, love your photography, you have an excellent eye.
Thank you very much aout the photogrpahs and thank you for the advice. Unfortunately most of my friends that have LF no longer live near me as I moved
I am thinking that probably a 90 and 250 would do for now. Now I just have to find a camera with all the movement and semi light weight so I can pack it around. I am ready to step it up a notch and really want to get into 4x5 even though I never used one.
Another problem is that I have to buy on line as I live pretty far out and stores are not around or close to me so a lot of research and reading is what I have to do.
Thank you again,
Kev you should look at taking the Oregon workshop I mentioned under member organized activities. It's with Don Kirby. He's amazing! It will be mainly LF people at the workshop and I bet there will be some stuff for sale as well.
I'm taking it. It would be great to see you there.
I was actually planning on taking a trip up to Oregon. When is the workshop?
This could be interesting.
Sponsored Ad. (Subscribers to APUG have the option to remove this ad.)
I took a look at your site and the pictures you have online. It seems you favour the long lenses for most of your images, so if you want to make similar images with your new camera, I'd suggest starting with a 300mm lens and going longer from there.
I'd also suggest you look at cameras with LOTS of bellows extension. Cameras like the Tachihara (which I use), Wista and Shen Hao will not be suitable for your photographic style. Unfortunately, you're looking at the more expensive field cameras like Ebony, or monorails.
Of course, you might find the shorter lenses more to your liking once you start using the 5x4 ....
I question how frequently the swings and tilts are really used in the field. Since you are planning to use for backpacking and since you have been using MF cameras, do you really need a view camera with all the movements? I think a rugged field camera with rise and fall and shift would be all you will need. Even for architectural photography usually the only function I use is the rising front to correct vertical perspective distortion. For nature photography I doubt you will use any of the movements.
I've wanted to try LF for decades - mainly for proper architectural photography. I haven't gotten quite there yet, and maybe I never will (cost being the main factor for me), however, from what I know about it, admittedly limited to observing and reading for many years, if I wanted a field camera and limited movements are enough, I would go for a Graflex Crown or Century Graphic or something like that, in good condition, with a Grafloc back. These were made until 1973, and so, some aren't that old, and even old ones can be in fine shape. Many are well under $300. If you get some film holders for it that are in good condition, like a Polaroid 4x5 and/or pack film holder, a roll film holder, and of course, regular film holders, these are all transferable to any future 4x5 camera you might decide you want or need, and, you haven't spent too much money on the camera itself. Later, even if you were to get a more modern, full-featured view camera, the Graflex would still be handy in some more casual shooting situations, and awfully nice just to look at.
The Oregon workshop is the last week of Sept in Coos Bay. Contact Don for further info. You won't be disappointed.
For landscape the movements I use most are front tilt, rise/fall, and some shift. For architecture, I'm mostly using rise/fall and shift, rarely tilts or swing except to get more rise/fall and shift indirectly.
For distant subjects, it doesn't matter too much whether you are using rise/fall and shift on the front or rear standard, so it's not much of a disadvantage to have a camera for landscapes with rise/fall and shift on only the front standard (pretty common on most field cameras), but for still life/macro/tabletop photography you want independent rise/fall and shift on front and rear standards, ideally.