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Thread: Seeing Square

  1. #1
    Eric Redard's Avatar
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    Seeing Square

    Hey Everyone.

    I am new to MF and am loving it. My dream job and ultimate goal is to become a portrait photographer. I currently have a Bronica SQ-Ai and really like the camera. I have made some nice images with it too.

    In my studying about posing, modeling, composition, etc, it seems MANY pros use 6x7 format. My question is, should I be looking at a 6x7 format rather than 6x6? Who are some well known photographers (besides you Cheryl) who use square format rather than 6x7?

    Coming from a 35mm background, moving to an RZ might be my answer.

    I don't know what to think, that's why I'm asking you for your opinion.

    Shalom,
    Eric Redard
    Shalom my friends.

    Eric Redard.

  2. #2

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    take a look at the hasslebad web site. They like showing off photographers that use their format.

    Cheers,

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    Huib's Avatar
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    Eric,

    I own also a "squarrish" camera but never restrict myself to fit all in the square format. What would that be good for? I also do not try to fit compositions to paperdimensions. I crop (negative/paper) to whatever is best for the picture.

    Free yourself from this doctrine of using a fixed aspectratio for all your pictures.

    Huib

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    The most rational argument I've seen for 6x7 is that a lot of pro's are shooting for magazines and stock libraries (which ultimatly end up in magazines and the like). In these cases the rectangular format (ideally 6x9 but 6x7 is more practical) allows more of the negative to be used in the final image. 6x6 would need to be cropped to fit a magazine page.

    If you're aiming to produce work for your own benefit, and to sell as artifacts in themselves then stay with what works for you.

    Ian

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    Ian said it well. I'll add that 6x7 also relates well to the 8x10 proportions which is a popular print size, especially with portraits, hence its use in commercial situations. If you really like the Bronica as you indicate, stick with it and make photographs.

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    I tried...I just don't see square.

    One thing to consider is the difference in camera size and weight. A 6x7 camera can be a lot bigger than a 6x6....RZ/RB compared to a 'blad or TLR

  7. #7
    Cheryl Jacobs's Avatar
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    Eric, I really don't think there's a format you "should" use. I think you have to follow your heart and use what feels right and results in the least amount of chopping possible. For me, I was always chopping off the end of my 35mm frames because I naturally see square. Since squares are becoming more popular, it's much easier to find frames and mattes to suit them.

    Of course, if you're doing commercial work that requires a specific format, then you have to consider that. Otherwise, do what's you.

    Who are some well known photographers (besides you Cheryl) who use square format rather than 6x7?
    Thanks for the grin. *lol*

  8. #8
    Aggie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by matthew
    One thing to consider is the difference in camera size and weight. A 6x7 camera can be a lot bigger than a 6x6....RZ/RB compared to a 'blad or TLR
    I have a Mamiya that is lighter than most 35mm. The 7II is very light and if you have steadier hands than me, is quite hand holdable. The 150mm les for it is a great portrait lens.

  9. #9
    David A. James's Avatar
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    Format Jitters.

    Format is only one issue, the real question is negative SIZE and 6X7 is obviously larger that 6X6 unless, of course, you intend to crop it to SQUARE. The other way around always results in less usable negative area. Bronica, by the way, makes a fine 6X7 that handles very well. Portraits? Studio or in situ? It makes a difference if your work is dedicated studio; in that case, 6X6 hardly makes sense when you can enjoy a 6X9 roll film adapter on a small (Linhof, Plaubel, Sinar) 21/4X31/4 view camera. Keep your Bronica and buy a small view with a good convertible portrait lens. You will be surprised how versatile that little gem will be. Shalom, David.

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Redard
    Hey Everyone.

    I am new to MF and am loving it. My dream job and ultimate goal is to become a portrait photographer. I currently have a Bronica SQ-Ai and really like the camera. I have made some nice images with it too.

    In my studying about posing, modeling, composition, etc, it seems MANY pros use 6x7 format. My question is, should I be looking at a 6x7 format rather than 6x6? Who are some well known photographers (besides you Cheryl) who use square format rather than 6x7?

    Coming from a 35mm background, moving to an RZ might be my answer.

    I don't know what to think, that's why I'm asking you for your opinion.

    Shalom,
    Eric Redard

  10. #10
    papagene's Avatar
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    Eric,
    My advise would be for the time being, stick to using the Bronica SQ-Ai (it's a fine camera) and really use it a lot. Eventually you will know if it suits your needs or if you feel like you are missing something: a different format; studio vs available light work; SLR vs TLR vs RF. After using the Bronica for a while you will know.
    For now, enjoy learning with your Bronica.
    gene
    gene LaFord


    Long live Ed "Big Daddy" Roth!!
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    "I don't care about Milwaukee or Chicago." - Yvon LeBlanc

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