October 25, 2012

Riding the Gamut...

Music | Lets Get Lost by Tina Dico

So within a peroid of a week, I managed to shoot my usual 4x5 plates, but also 8x10 and 2.5x2.5 inch plates as well. I was going to help out a friend for a test shoot at his studio and I knew he has a large camera stand that would accommodate my Century 4A studio 8x10. I figured out I hadn't shot with that camera in close to 25 years. The problem being I don't have a stand or tripod big enough to carry such a massive camera. Brandon's stand was built for an a 11x14 camera, so there was no problem with holding mine. He was kind enough for me to get off a plate, just for me to know there were no light leaks in the bellows and any other problem that possibly could have cropped up. I can tell I'm going to have a good time shooting with that camera in time.

Dara and I had gone gallery hopping a few weekends ago and at one of them, I saw some small pieces, 2x2 printed objects in nice little frames selling for under $100. They were nice intimate pieces and would go well having several at a time to hang. One of the problems I have with my larger 4x5 and eventual 8x10 plates is that I think they are worth a certain a amount of money, but too much for most people to want to purchase. I really thought having small plates to sell under $100 would be a great idea.

My first go around was to try and use a Holga camera. It was a breeze to set up for 2.5 inch square plates. I did a test run and thought it would be a very good candidate. However, one of the things I didn't like was that the lens is wide angle and focus distance wasn't very good. All of the objects I was thinking of shooting would look too small on the plate. My next thought was the Rolleiflex. This camera has a longer focal length lens and would accommodate close up filters. I asked a friend of mine, Dennis Purdy, a Rolleiflex expert if I could borrow a filter and described my intention. He not only gave me the filter I needed, he also gave me the ultimate solution for me to shoot these objects with the Rolleiflex camera. Back when roll film was relatively new, a lot of photographers weren't confident that the film could be held flat as well as plates. So Rolleiflex made a plate adapter back that also used a ground glass that only utilized the shooting lens of the twin lens reflex design. I would have no parallax issues and would see exactly what I would get on plate. I will be testing this setup tomorrow to see if I can make the wet plates with it. I'm really excited about the possibilities!

Ratio of sizes...

8x10 of Brandon

4x5 of Cain

2.5 inch square of a Fan

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