Joking aside, how about a supplementary close up lens on the RZ ?
If you really want MF, then I can tell you my 6x4.5 Bronica ETRSi has low mirror slap noise, considerably less than the earlier ETR series cameras, and the older 100/4 macros, which go to 1:4, are not expensive and easy to find. Or an extension tube can be used with a longer lens. The 6x6 SQ series is another option, with the older 110 macros also going to 1:4.
The Pentax 645 is fairly quiet, particularly the mirror slap, though it does have the winder noise.
I second that!Quote:
Congratulations and I'm so glad she'll going to make it. I'm sure she is a beautiful baby!
I have three 3-month early preemies (well, they were born at 28.5 weeks, perhaps not quite 3 mos -- and they are now 14 year old).
The NICU (Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, for the uninitiated) is not a typical hospital ward -- talking with the nurses would be the thing to do -- perhaps they'll have some ideas of when the best time is -- and might provide some help. Our boys were in the NICU for 8 weeks
But I would not hurry things. No one expects a new parent to provide platinum prints of a newborn so soon! Take it slow and perhaps it might be better to wait until she gets even stronger and can be held outside the incubator for extended periods of time. A image of mom holding her, taken with the Rollei, might be the way to go...no need for the close-up work then. Those negs make for nice little platinum prints. Crank off 12 shots, and gang-print all twelve on a single sheet of coated pt paper and cut them up for the cards.
A digital image or two for now would be more than enough for friends and family. I have a great photo of one of my boys wearing my wedding ring as a bracelet!
I wish your daughter the best. But take care of yourself, also! The NICU can be a scary situation -- it certainly had it tough moments for me, even with everything going well!
PS...while triplets were a little bit more of a handful than a single babe, take advantage of this time. While the boys were in the NICU, I got a lot of darkroom work done. Once they got out (I was a stay-at-home-dad) all I time for was SX-70's! HINT -- and take advantage of the time before she learns to crawl! Until then, one can have a lot of fun with photos as one can place the babes anywhere and photograph without having them crawl off!
borrow a speed graphic or graflex slr.
a 4x5 pt/pd print would be perfect,
and a press camera ( or older press camera ( slr ) )
would work perfectly in that situation ...
hand held, available light and push your film ..
congratulations, good luck !( and have fun)
Since the topic "flash and newborns" came up again - *SIGH!!! *
Flash does not hurt your baby unless you do something seriously wrong. No eye can adjust to flash - remember it discharges within a milli second! It doesn't make a difference whether you flash a new born or an adult. If flashes were a problem, all these P&S camera toting folks would have vision impaired kids by now (most of them don't know how to turn off their in camera flash).
I second the 35mm camera suggestion. You want this shooting to be done quickly and without interfering with the work of the hospital staff. Autofocus, TTL flash and a versatile camera are your best bet. Once the baby is back home you have all the time in the world to make all the 20x25" negatives if you ever wanted.
I am very happy to hear that your daughter is beating the odds.
I'd use a 35mm SLR with a fast lens for this project. They are easy to use, unobtrusive, and quite capable in this situation. And the image quality they can produce is more than adequate for this use.
When my father died, I shot his body in the hospital. I got along very well with my father, and his death came as a shock. I decided it was probably a twice-in-a lifetime photographic opportunity (one for each parent), and that as hard it is was, it would have some artistic and emotional utility for me at some point. So I decided to seize the moment for raw material and sort it all out later. The camera helped me cope with the shock of the moment by giving me some sort of specific task to focus on. I stopped by home on the way to the hospital, and, preparing for the worst possible lighting, I loaded up my Canon F-1 with Fuji Press 800 and put a 55mm f/1.2 lens on it. I didn't have a meter, so I guessed. Ended up using f/2.8 at '60. I wasn't sure what to do with the pix, but as I expected, I figured something out some time later, and the project I did really touched some of my family members, and also made it into a juried show and won me a scholarship.
The point is that I couldn't have imagined being able to get the pix I wanted with any other type of camera. RF focusing and framing wouldn't have been good enough. Medium format would not have been as easily hand holdable, and likely would have been noticed by hospital staff. SLRs provide very accurate framing and focusing, which helps you out immensely in tricky situations. And small format gives you an unobtrusive package that excels in low light, and it gives you more D of F at a given f stop. You have to be fast, accurate, and fairly unobtrusive, all at close distances hand held in poor light. It's the perfect job for a small format SLR in my opinion.
I am glad that in this particular case, you are making art out of a new life, instead of out of death. Good luck with your daughter and with the project!
P.S. Other great options could be discussed at DPUG, such as a high-quality point and shoot digital camera like the Canon S95, and then inkjet negative transparencies. They are incredibly unobtrusive (completely silent, and smaller than a wallet), and provide great depth of field and good low light ability (S95 has an f/2.0 lens).
Furthermore, while I was doing bioengineering, the topic came up and the doctors we worked with stated that new bornes and very young babies cannot handle either flash or strobes.
I can go on with other occasions when this has come up with optical surgeons, peditricians, ... and the medical research that I have read on the subject which was tangently related to the work I was doing, but unless you can point to an vetted, accepted article in a well respected medical journal that states otherwise, you do not have a leg to stand on.