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  1. #1

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    Good read; One camera, one lens, one film, one year

    Found this in Rangefinder forum, it's an interesting read on keeping things simple and just making pictures.

    http://itsalwaysluck.com/2013/12/11/...-for-6-months/

  2. #2
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    Great article.

    No matter if film or digital.

    Learning to see and shoot with one prime lens is a game changer.
    I couldn't think of anything witty to say so I left this blank.

  3. #3
    Thomas Bertilsson's Avatar
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    It's nice to see these things happen. I've always believed in photography being about seeing, and when we switch materials around too much we distract ourselves from truly seeing.

    Thank you.
    "Often moments come looking for us". - Robert Frank

    "Make good art!" - Neil Gaiman

    "...the heart and mind are the true lens of the camera". - Yousuf Karsh

  4. #4
    Richard Sintchak (rich815)'s Avatar
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    Good read; One camera, one lens, one film, one year

    When ever I shoot each photo I only use one camera, one lens, and one film. :-)

    I simply enjoy the different and varying handling, feel and craftsmanship of so many of my old and classic film cameras that I'd have a hard time sticking to this. Often before a shoot I'll see which of my cameras "calls" to me and go with a last minute gut feeling as to which I'll use. Of course more serious work or jobs require the right tool no matter what and that overrides any romantic notion of some camera or my gut calling to me. But luckily I make a decent living outside of photography and do most of my photo work purely for simple enjoyment and for myself.

    That said I admire the spirit and idea of this kind of project and will likely step up and do it sometime. For now if I do this kind of thing it only lasts a week or a month.
    -----------------------

    "Well, my photos are actually much better than they look..."

    Richard S.
    Albany, CA (San Francisco bay area)

    My Flickr River of photographs
    http://flickriver.com/photos/rich815...r-interesting/

    My Photography Website
    http://www.lightshadowandtone.com

  5. #5
    David Allen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thomas Bertilsson View Post
    It's nice to see these things happen. I've always believed in photography being about seeing, and when we switch materials around too much we distract ourselves from truly seeing.

    Thank you.
    A very important point. Photography is all about seeing, seeing and seeing that is backed up with sound technique to realise what you saw. Outside of when I worked commercially (often not knowing what the next assignment was when contacted via my pager), for my own photography I have always followed the one camera, one lens, one film, one developer, one paper approach. I do this because I can concentrate on making photographs. If something interesting is too far away and I can't walk closer to it then I simply ignore it and move on to something else. After 12 years with my current combo, as soon as I see something that would make a good image I can already picture in my head exactly how the print will look. This to me is far more interesting than endless testing (I only test when one of my key ingredients - usually alas paper - is changed and I have to find a replacement), changing equipment, etc.

    Bests,

    David
    www.dsallen.de

  6. #6
    Alan Klein's Avatar
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    I find that shooting MF landscapes slows me down and requires me to think about what I'm seeing. The separate light meter, tripod, setting up the focus, aperture and shutter speed, everything manually. Pretty much as he described in his blog. Of course he was describing street photography where you're using one lens for the most part. However, also using different fixed length lenses add to the seeing. It requires me to stop and think even more about what the subject is because I have to select and mount the right lens to frame it as my vision wants to see the final picture.

  7. #7
    Thomas Bertilsson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alan Klein View Post
    I find that shooting MF landscapes slows me down and requires me to think about what I'm seeing. The separate light meter, tripod, setting up the focus, aperture and shutter speed, everything manually. Pretty much as he described in his blog. Of course he was describing street photography where you're using one lens for the most part. However, also using different fixed length lenses add to the seeing. It requires me to stop and think even more about what the subject is because I have to select and mount the right lens to frame it as my vision wants to see the final picture.
    But if you read his text again carefully, the end goal is not to think more about what he's doing. It is to get to a state of mind where you intuitively know what to do, without thinking. That's the distinction. You are so in tune with your equipment that you no longer have to think about what you do, you just react.

    For landscape photography that may or may not apply. Things don't move very quickly in a landscape, where you may end up waiting for a long time for the right moment to take the picture. The weather could be changing quickly, though, in which case you would need to react quickly. But then the discussion might maybe be steered back to talking about film and developers. In landscape photography it's not uncommon to use all sorts of filters, neutral density, graduated filters, contrast and color filters, and sometimes exposures can be extremely long. Do you really know how to use your film, without looking it up, by just taking a light reading at all times? That's important knowledge too and is a big part of the chain of events.

    I'm fascinated by the simplicity of the task of using one 'everything' for a long period of time. It is such a simple way of approaching photography, and such a good way of becoming a better photographer, yet many of us are so brainwashed and indoctrinated with the idea of the camera, lens, film choice and so on being important, that we find ourselves justifying carrying more than one of everything.
    "Often moments come looking for us". - Robert Frank

    "Make good art!" - Neil Gaiman

    "...the heart and mind are the true lens of the camera". - Yousuf Karsh

  8. #8

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    I think the article makes a good point, but at the same time, the "one of everything" approach is a bit gratuitously restrictive, I think. Is it really helpful to say "I'm going to forgo shooting indoors this year" because the film you chose is too slow, or conversely "I'm going to shoot studio macros on Delta 3200" because you made the opposite choice? Or to force yourself to shoot your kid's baseball game with an 8x10 and a 210mm lens?

    Generally I think it makes more sense to make restrictions like this into a non-exclusive project; not "I will shoot with nothing else", but "I will concentrate on working with this toolset". But I'm a big fan of "horses for courses", as well as of messing around with different gadgets, and I suppose somewhere out there is the photographer who *would* use that 8x10 at the baseball game and get terrific results.

    -NT

    Edit: Also, did anyone else have a large-format giggle about "small" apertures meaning f/8 to f/11?
    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_

  9. #9
    Thomas Bertilsson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ntenny View Post
    I think the article makes a good point, but at the same time, the "one of everything" approach is a bit gratuitously restrictive, I think. Is it really helpful to say "I'm going to forgo shooting indoors this year" because the film you chose is too slow, or conversely "I'm going to shoot studio macros on Delta 3200" because you made the opposite choice? Or to force yourself to shoot your kid's baseball game with an 8x10 and a 210mm lens?

    Generally I think it makes more sense to make restrictions like this into a non-exclusive project; not "I will shoot with nothing else", but "I will concentrate on working with this toolset". But I'm a big fan of "horses for courses", as well as of messing around with different gadgets, and I suppose somewhere out there is the photographer who *would* use that 8x10 at the baseball game and get terrific results.

    -NT

    Edit: Also, did anyone else have a large-format giggle about "small" apertures meaning f/8 to f/11?
    I am going to throw this out there only to stimulate discussion. I think you're very level headed, so don't take this the wrong way.

    Don't you think that it is BECAUSE OF the challenges that one 'everything' presents that make you a better photographer?

    I think it's important to make a distinction here that it's about fundamental qualities of seeing and feeling your way to the end result, and for this exercise you'd have to learn how to expand your capabilities to compensate for some of the challenges.
    "Often moments come looking for us". - Robert Frank

    "Make good art!" - Neil Gaiman

    "...the heart and mind are the true lens of the camera". - Yousuf Karsh

  10. #10
    MDR
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    I think this is extremely funny on many photo forums people claim that the get superior photos and learn to see better using only one lens and how new and refreshing this experience is but in reality most photographers until after WWII only used one camera with one focal length
    and they created some great work but mostly mediocre to bad work. In reality most people never learned how to see and only using one camera and one lens won't teach them how to see imo. Going out (also at home) and really start looking at things will teach them how to see a camera and lens can't do that.

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