Hello All-

I have been shooting 35mm for years, and have decided to step up to a meduim format. I'll still keep my old A-1, but I want to add a larger camera. I tend to shoot nature and similar scenes, and don't shoot people or "action" photography.

I know very little about medium format, oher than the little I have learned while using a Holga. Based on what I am reading, the 645 cameras seem to be a good start, which, I guess, puts me in a Mamiya, Bronica, or Pentax (am I right on that?). I would like the input of the group here. Do you have any recommendations for a starter camera, what lens or lenses, etc?

I mentioned medium format earlier, and someone recommendded I go straight to large format. While that might be sound advice, I am not ready to make that much of a jump.

Also, I live in a smaller city which doesn't have much in the way of a good camera shop (other than Ritz stores, there are 2 stores here-one pretty much has gone to digital, and the other is small and sort of junky). I am near New Orleans, however, and can drive over there. While I probably will buy a camera from an internet dealer, I'd like to handle one first. Is there anyone here who lives on New Orleans or who knows any good camera stores over there?

This is an open ended question, or series of questions, so feel free to give me any thoughts you might have.