I am constantly asked questions about how I started and how to start shooting film. So, here we go! This guide is intended to be a story of my introduction to film as a landscape photographer, provide some tips, introductions and guidance, but in no means is it intended to be a foolproof method of shooting film. That’s a path that’s unique for everyone, so be prepared for failures and having some trial and error. That’s part of the process!Read More
Almost daily, I wake up to an email, comment, or private message saying, "I want to start shooting large format, but I don't know where to start. What should I do and what should I buy?" Awesome! That's great news! After responding to each and every one of you (thank you for being so kind to ask me), I have decided to put together a list of recommended equipment for those of you who want to start shooting large format. Remember, the used market is your friend when trying to find equipment. There's a few good Facebook buy/sell/trade groups for film equipment, the Large Format Photography Forum can be a good source, but generally, I've had good luck on eBay.
*This is by no means a perfect solution and if you don't want to listen to me, by all means - don't. Everyone should has their own opinion and style and this is just what I have learned over the years. If I was starting fresh again, this is my guide.
**This is also guided towards 4x5 equipment, because of three reasons. 1) I guarantee you that you will make mistakes in this journey. A lot of them. You want those mistakes to be as inexpensive as possible. 4x5 is 4 times smaller by area than 8x10, thus making everything generally about 4 times less expensive. 2) Learning movements is a process and depth of field is always a challenge on large format. With 4x5, you have less of a challenge, which will lead to a more productive learning experience. 3) Everything is generally lighter and overall a less punishable experience than larger formats. Learning to compose on a ground glass can be tricky. 8x10 (and larger) is very rewarding, but I suggest you get your feet wet before diving in.Read More
In modern digital photography, every new camera model announces its increased dynamic range, or ability to capture a broad range of light. All camera manufacturers are fighting to exceed their last model and their competitor's model, growing what seems to be an endless data sheet into a camera that can see in the dark, in all spectrums of light, can capture 10 gigapixels of data, and is essentially noise free...oh, and can also successfully fly into an erupting volcano. While I am all for the advancement of technology, part of me cringes when I see these specifications on all new camera bodies. What's missing in so many modern photographers is the ability to see and capture quality light. Mind you, I am writing this in the perspective of a landscape photographer. The advent of modern digital cameras have their place in other photographic mediums and strongly believe are important for the industry, so take what I say with a grain of salt.Read More