I saw something yesterday that was many things at once: Comical, pathetic, odd, stupid, and just weird. My wife and I were visiting one of those "Historical Villages" (a la Williamsburg) where all sorts of period buildings are on display and showcased as if you were back in the 1860s. One of those buidldings, a preppy white house, was the "Photographers Home and Place of Business". Of course, the idea was to show what an 1860 photo studio looked like. And, for a small fee, visitors can dress up in period costumes and have their portraits taken "just like in 1860". The "view camera" was set up in the parlour and people were dressing up to have their photo taken etc... The "view camera" in question is the actual item of contemption in that what they have is an old - and real - 8x10 view camera. However, the film holder/standard has been removed and tucked away within the bellows (for all to see acually), is one of those fancy Canon digitals!!! The "View Camera"'s lensboard has been cut out to accomodate the Canon's lens. Below this, the "Photographer", dressed also in 1860 garb, drives the thing with a less than well hidden computer. Seconds later, an "Albumen Print" is spitted out from an also not-so-well-hidden printer. And VOILA! Your very own period portrait, just like they did in 1860!!! The whole mess is a badly mangled attempt at reproducing a real 1860s view camera set up. What a JOKE!!! The whole thing just struck me as very stupid and really ticked me off as a photography enthusiat and view camera owner/practitionner!!! Of course, I understand the WHYs... but the whole scene what just SAD!!! The recreation of the 1860 period was only carried so far. Too bad there wasn't a real camera with real Collodion plates and real Albumen prints.... Ahhhhhh the "good old days".... Hell, I'd pay good money to get my picture taken. Oh well, a sign of the times?
Thanks for listening to me vent folks! I feel better now.
BTW, go to the Technical Gallery to see my new 8x10 All-Copper View Camera. It's a beauty... :-)