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  1. #1
    cliveh's Avatar
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    Focal plane distortion

    On the subject of sports photography, have any of you guys ever tried to emulate a focal plane distortion like this shot by Jacques-Henri Lartigue?


    http://arianepoulinphotography.files...6052f01d_m.jpg

    “The contemplation of things as they are, without error or confusion, without substitution or imposture, is in itself a nobler thing than a whole harvest of invention”

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  2. #2
    John Austin's Avatar
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    I have never wanted to, but for the throng who does, try a Speed Graphic with FP shutter - Why does the answer still come back to SG so often?

    I have always adored this image by JHL, and the one of a child playing hoop on a cold beach with a small sailing boat on the horizon

  3. #3

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    it really can't be done with a speed graphic because 1/30 is too fast for that sort of distortion
    i have done it ( barely ) with a graflex slr, and a shutter at around 1/15S and a moving bus ( /barely )
    but never at a sports event
    im empty, good luck

  4. #4
    Leigh B's Avatar
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    The image in the OP is typical of a vertical-travel shutter at a speed faster than its flash sync speed, i.e. when you have a moving slit and the full film aperture is never open.

    You could accomplish the same thing with any 35mm camera that uses a Copal Square shutter, like most of the second-tier Nikons of the 60's-80's(??).
    The top-of-the-line professional Nikons used horizontal-travel shutters.

    - Leigh
    “Wise men talk because they have something to say; fools, because they have to say something.” - Plato

  5. #5
    ic-racer's Avatar
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    Your subject has to be moving quite fast to do it with a small format camera (because the shutter runs across the film plane pretty quick). Of course you'd want a vertical travel shutter to get the background slanted.
    Click image for larger version. 

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  6. #6
    jp498's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cliveh View Post
    On the subject of sports photography, have any of you guys ever tried to emulate a focal plane distortion like this shot by Jacques-Henri Lartigue?


    http://arianepoulinphotography.files...6052f01d_m.jpg
    Yeh, I'm crazy about that photo. I've got a speed graphic (pre-anniversary) to try it with, but there are so many combinations of speeds and slit widths I haven't got it yet. I've only wasted a half dozen sheets trying, so no pain no gain yet on this project. It appears Lartigue was panning the camera some and the car was moving faster than the panning motion. I want to figure it out with a box of fuji instant sometime, but the back doesn't open enough to hold the pa45. Older speed graphics go down to 1/10 sec and newer ones (with graflock back) only go down to 1/30. Not sure what difference it makes yet.

  7. #7
    polyglot's Avatar
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    You can get this effect with any focal-plane shutter if you have a fast-enough subject. Propellers are a good start, even with very fast shutters.

    While it's not analogue, you can get crazy effects from phone-cameras with electronic shutters. They work by scanning/clearing a line of pixels at a time (sometimes quite slowly), which means you effectively have a one-pixel shutter slit, which results in very funky effects on things like propellers.

  8. #8

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    http://people.rit.edu/andpph/text-slit-scan.html
    About a 'page or so down is a small thumbnail of the right side of a couple dancing. Robert Doisneau, an extra twist...

  9. #9

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    No data on the photos here, but many old photos demonstrating FP distortion. (And showing the entire auto.)

    http://theoldmotor.com/?attachment_id=41732

  10. #10
    Ian Grant's Avatar
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    The bigger and wider the shutter the greater the effect, and older focal plane shutters that use both slit width and tension to control speed will give the greatest effect. That'll be with a narrower slit at a lower tension (curtain speed).

    Ian

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