Quote Originally Posted by Early Riser View Post
Originally Posted by Early Riser:
I don't want to denigrate those that shoot with huge banquet cameras, but most of the work that I have seen done using a gigantic camera tends to be very static and have average lighting at best...

Posted by Bill:
Sorry, but this is a petty, blanket statement IMO and I am sick of this argument no matter who brings it up. Just as much... even more crap is made with smaller cameras.

Bill I agree that more crap is made by people with smaller cameras. There must be 10,000 people shooting 35mm, MF, or smaller LF for each person shooting ULF. However it is my opinion that the majority of work that i have seen with ULF is static and has at best average lighting. I'm not trying to be petty, that's just my opinion. I think that a huge, easily wind and precipitation affected, slow to set up, far less portable camera, using less available, less portable, vastly more expensive film is going to affect how one works. It's going to influence people into shooting in a more static way. How many ULF cameras do you see at sporting events or in the hands of photojournalists? Obviously the type of gear you choose will impact on your work. Why would my opinion of that be petty? With your logic then I could say that anyone who doesn't like my work is just being petty.

I do agree with you wholeheartedly when you tell people not to think about what sells and to do the work you want to do.

As for travel, I like to travel, I like seeing what's around the next corner. I haven't modeled by work philosophy after Michael Kenna or anyone, and I think my own methods are more unique to me. I am pissed though that Kenna went to China because my wife is from there and we were planning to go to Guilan, and to the village that her folks came from, now if I go there and shoot some might say that I was following Kenna. Then again when I first went to Iceland in early 2001, few went there. A year later it seems like everyone started going there. I don't think I started some trend, but the reality is that some places really lend themselves to photography and it is natural that photographers would go there as they have a higher probability of getting better images.
I feel you are correct about the ULF camera statement. Many photographers always end up shooting images with ULF cameras that are from the standing average height human level. I think that what makes a photograph interesting is how the photographer is viewing the subject matter. If that is from the exact same standpoint that everyone else views it from, I think that makes it less interesting. It's not really the camera that makes the images static, but the photographer who cannot handle that size of camera to really move it around and try something new with it. I was shooting 11x14 for awhile, and although I felt that I made some good images, they were not exciting me as much as the images done with the 8x10.

When looking at your work, I do notice some influence from Kenna, but thats okay. Nothing wrong with that. You are consistant with your image making and I get a sense of your style in your work. There is still tons of unique images to be made in Yosemite that could not be compared to Adams, so just because Kenna did work in China, does not mean you have to do the same thing. The hardest thing for you, will not to be looking for such subject matter that you may have seen in Kenna's images.