How "You" Judge Exposure

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smoke665

smoke665

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@mrca I haven't really used the zone method since the 70's. It only takes me a sec to sample the scene using the spot meter, calculate the DR, put the spot on the eye, spin the EV comp dial, press the shutter. One of the advantages of using Pentax for years is they don't change up the control locations much. Adjustments become a matter of muscle memory without much thought. Highlight protection and shadow correction allow you some latitude if you're off slightly.
 

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On portraits, that grain is gorgeous. I don't need the speed, I shoot b&w film for grain and I love the grain that produces on 645. 35, it over powers the image, 67, not prominent enough, 645, for me, goldilocks. But that is personal taste and my vision for a portrait. I have 6x6, 45 and 67 capability but found my vision there What I am expecting you are getting in that 4x5 is tonal transitions say, across a face, that are absolutely gorgeous across that huge negative. It is a huge improvement from 35 to 67, but 4x5 has to be monumental. But like you say, it comes at a price. Some of the 4x5 cameras I have seen look pretty light and relatively portable folded down. They are tripod beasts but that is where I prefer my RB67 any way. Just got a split prism focus screen for it and it really makes nailing focus a piece of cake instead of always wondering if I had it. Do you find focusing the 4x5 difficult?
 

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On portraits, that grain is gorgeous. I don't need the speed, I shoot b&w film for grain and I love the grain that produces on 645. 35, it over powers the image, 67, not prominent enough, 645, for me, goldilocks. But that is personal taste and my vision for a portrait. I have 6x6, 45 and 67 capability but found my vision there What I am expecting you are getting in that 4x5 is tonal transitions say, across a face, that are absolutely gorgeous across that huge negative. It is a huge improvement from 35 to 67, but 4x5 has to be monumental. But like you say, it comes at a price. Some of the 4x5 cameras I have seen look pretty light and relatively portable folded down. They are tripod beasts but that is where I prefer my RB67 any way. Just got a split prism focus screen for it and it really makes nailing focus a piece of cake instead of always wondering if I had it. Do you find focusing the 4x5 difficult?
Yes. It's easier to focus my RB67. I also don;t like viewing upside down on view cameras. It's a learning process that I have not yet learned. My 4x5 is lighter than my RB67. It's a Chamonix.

Regarding focusing my RB67, I use an eye-level viewfinder and have a magnifier that attaches to the viewfinder to magnify the center. It;s very handy and makes a big difference in focusing. I use an eye loupe with my 4x5 view cameras.
 
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@mrca I'll admit I've thought seriously about 4x5, but the truth is I have several rolls of 35mm film in the fridge that have been there several years. The convience of digital just outweighs the extra effort. Plus I've read several articles comparing resolution of digital vs 4x5 which pretty much puts the two on equal footing once you pass 30MP on printing large prints. With Luts, Presets and Profiles in LR and PS it's relativrly easy to replicate a "film look", that only the most careful observation might discover. Considering the fact that printing a film negative by a commercial lab requires digitizing and is then printed in the same manner as a digital image, I just don't see the advantage of film. Now if you print your own on an enlarger then yes.
 

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I my experience 4x5 is not really an "on the fly" medium. I love it but I am slow with it. My TLR is better because it is smaller and the controls are within thumb reach.

However, last fall I shot some rodeo photos. It was hard to beat the DSLR set to shoot multiple shots with one shutter button squeeze.
 

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Alan, I admire your adventure. Please post regarding your progress, successes and failures. Funny you mentioned the upside down viewing. I actually would welcome that, because it makes it easier to extrapolate shapes and forms rather than seeing real objects. It really helps composing by eliminating the reality of the objects. The book drawing from the right side of the brain really transform my ability to move into the creative zone. Their first exercise was to take a picture, turn it upside down and overlay it with a piece of clear plexiglass with a cross through it and lightly penciled the same cross on your paper.. Then draw what was in each quadrant. That forced total dissociation from the person you are drawing. When I finished, I had actually drawn a near perfect portrait. Having the photo upside down and only drawing built quadrant at a time.Totally dissociated the photo from what it really represented. Her point was your fingers can move to draw. It's just that your brain interferes. With an upside down image on the viewing screen, it can do the same. I would really like to hear about your experience with 4x5 as you progress.
 

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I my experience 4x5 is not really an "on the fly" medium. I love it but I am slow with it. My TLR is better because it is smaller and the controls are within thumb reach.

However, last fall I shot some rodeo photos. It was hard to beat the DSLR set to shoot multiple shots with one shutter button squeeze.
Horses for courses. When I take a RB67 mf camera on photo walks, I am really trying to do something it isnt totally suited to. But my glass, having to pull the dark slied, advance film, cock the shutter and max shutter speed of 1/400 wouldn't be much use at a rodeo for action shots. And if I didn't develop my film, at $3 a click, burst wouldn't be in my work flow even if I had a power back. Of course, when I first got a d850 with 9 fps, I shot a 4 hr boat race and came home with groups of about 10 near identical shots totalling 1500 that I had to cull. But for portraits especially in studio on a rolling stand, it produces gorgeous images.
 

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@mrca I'll admit I've thought seriously about 4x5, but the truth is I have several rolls of 35mm film in the fridge that have been there several years. The convience of digital just outweighs the extra effort. Plus I've read several articles comparing resolution of digital vs 4x5 which pretty much puts the two on equal footing once you pass 30MP on printing large prints. With Luts, Presets and Profiles in LR and PS it's relativrly easy to replicate a "film look", that only the most careful observation might discover. Considering the fact that printing a film negative by a commercial lab requires digitizing and is then printed in the same manner as a digital image, I just don't see the advantage of film. Now if you print your own on an enlarger then yes.
Shooting 4x5 is like taking a bubble bath in a Jacuzzi while shooting digital is like taking a shower. You get clean either way.
 
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@AlanKlein LOL for me the darkroom was the Bubble Bath time. Years ago I had a nice one. Unfortunately it and the equipment went with the newspapers when I sold out.
 

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Alan, I admire your adventure. Please post regarding your progress, successes and failures. Funny you mentioned the upside down viewing. I actually would welcome that, because it makes it easier to extrapolate shapes and forms rather than seeing real objects. It really helps composing by eliminating the reality of the objects. The book drawing from the right side of the brain really transform my ability to move into the creative zone. Their first exercise was to take a picture, turn it upside down and overlay it with a piece of clear plexiglass with a cross through it and lightly penciled the same cross on your paper.. Then draw what was in each quadrant. That forced total dissociation from the person you are drawing. When I finished, I had actually drawn a near perfect portrait. Having the photo upside down and only drawing built quadrant at a time.Totally dissociated the photo from what it really represented. Her point was your fingers can move to draw. It's just that your brain interferes. With an upside down image on the viewing screen, it can do the same. I would really like to hear about your experience with 4x5 as you progress.
I find upside discombobulating. My brain works right side up. I understand the point of looking and arranging form. But I'm not arranging forms only. I'm looking at the whole image. But others find the opposite. Well, that's what makes the world go around. With the RB67, I couldn't;t stand the waist-level finder. Whenever I needed to turn left, I turned right and vice versa. The reversed image on the screen drove me nuts so I got an eye-level finder.
 

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@AlanKlein LOL for me the darkroom was the Bubble Bath time. Years ago I had a nice one. Unfortunately it and the equipment went with the newspapers when I sold out.
Well, a darkroom after shooting 4x5 is like having your wife dry you after the bubble bath. Unfortunately, I don't have a darkroom and I have to dry myself. :)
 

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I find upside discombobulating. My brain works right side up. I understand the point of looking and arranging form. But I'm not arranging forms only. I'm looking at the whole image. But others find the opposite. Well, that's what makes the world go around. With the RB67, I couldn't;t stand the waist-level finder. Whenever I needed to turn left, I turned right and vice versa. The reversed image on the screen drove me nuts so I got an eye-level finder.
Shooting a wlf on the rb and yashica tlr makes not only the left to right but also perpendicular become second nature. Having either rule of thirds on the tlr or 645 lines on the rb helps getting vertical lined up. But yes, drove me crazy for a while. Now I shoot wlf over 50% of the time so I don't have to think about it. Isn't the 4x5 upside down and reversed left to right?
 

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Well, a darkroom after shooting 4x5 is like having your wife dry you after the bubble bath. Unfortunately, I don't have a darkroom and I have to dry myself. :)
I have a dark room and no wife. Hence, my second bath tub is full of bottles of chemicals, a box/souvide, gallons of distilled water and I hang film to dry with the shower curtain pulled. Turning off hvac before I start to develop, then film straight onto the shower nozzle and curtain closed, I rarely if ever get a bit of dust on my negs. I use a wetting agent in distilled water on the last rinse and sqeege, but I won't change a winning game. 2 hrs later, the uncut film strip is loaded into a film holder scanning with a d850 tethered to LR so I can nail focus, see the histogram for each neg and adjust exposure of each as fast as I can push them through the holder. Then I cut the negs and store.
 

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Shooting a wlf on the rb and yashica tlr makes not only the left to right but also perpendicular become second nature. Having either rule of thirds on the tlr or 645 lines on the rb helps getting vertical lined up. But yes, drove me crazy for a while. Now I shoot wlf over 50% of the time so I don't have to think about it. Isn't the 4x5 upside down and reversed left to right?
Yes, 4x5 is worse than waist level finders on MF. Upside down reversed and I think inside out too. It drives me crazy. I bought an eye level viewfinder for it. But it darkens the view on the ground glass which is really bad on wide-angle lenses.

What I do, is use my digital camera to line up the shot even before taking out the 4x5. I zoom to determine which lens I need for the 4x5. Then I drop something the ground to mark where I'm standing. Then I get my camera and tripod and open it on the marked spot on the ground. I set up the camera aiming at the subject as I originally determined on the digital camera, more or less. Then I fine-tune the edges and focus.

So all the aesthetics were taken care of with the digital camera. I only need to frame, set the exposure and focus the 4x5 and shoot. I also can take off the eye level finer and use my loupe to focus and make fine adjustments at that time. It's annoying frankly. I might give it up and go back to MF to save my sanity. ;)
 

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I have a dark room and no wife. Hence, my second bath tub is full of bottles of chemicals, a box/souvide, gallons of distilled water and I hang film to dry with the shower curtain pulled. Turning off hvac before I start to develop, then film straight onto the shower nozzle and curtain closed, I rarely if ever get a bit of dust on my negs. I use a wetting agent in distilled water on the last rinse and sqeege, but I won't change a winning game. 2 hrs later, the uncut film strip is loaded into a film holder scanning with a d850 tethered to LR so I can nail focus, see the histogram for each neg and adjust exposure of each as fast as I can push them through the holder. Then I cut the negs and store.
Unfortunately, I have to take a shower by myself. At least the film keeps you company. :)
 

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