Books : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

Looking for information on the best books for three different subjects.

1. I have Using the View Camera, Ansel Adams 1,2,3, and have ordered View Camera Technique. Are there any others that cover the use of the camera better?

2. I have no books on setting up a dark room. What are the best selections on designing and selecting equipment? Need to understand the various types of equipment, there good and bad characteristics, especially enlargers, light source, jobo, the type of paper and chemicals the equipment is design to work with.

3. I have no books on dark room technique. What are the best books on printing? I need to understand the methods and equipment needed for different papers and chemicals. I had planned on using VC paper and filters, Kodak.

Thanks for the help...........

-- tim kimbler (, January 25, 1998


As far as large format technique is concerned, Stroebel is the bible. Other, less comprehensive, books are by Steve Simmons and Harvey Shaman. I believe that there is another book out there (I haven't seen it), also by somebody whose name begins with the letter S (there must be a rule that only people whose names begin with S can write about view camera technique). Kodak also publishes a book on view cameras.

As a landscape photographer, the real problem I have with all of these books is that they seem to be geared to the studio photographer who shoots cereal boxes on a tabletop. The practical problems faced in landscape work are very different, and I haven't yet found a book which covers this subject adequately.

-- Rob Rothman (, January 26, 1998.

The other S book is by Jim Stone. I've read the Stone booka and the Simmons book. The Simmons book is clearer and the writing is clearer.

-- Stuart Goldstein (, January 26, 1998.

I have the Shaman, Simmons, Stroebel, and Kodak books. I didn't find the Shaman book to be very useful. The Simmons book was good and the Kodak book was o.k. but too superficial I thought. The Stroebel book is by far the most thorough of the four but it is quite technical and the writing style is dry to say the least. If I had to own only one of these books I would own the Stroebel book if I was very serious about large format photography and the Simmons book if I was slightly less committed. One particularly nice thing about the Stroebel book is that it contains an appendix with extremely detailed specifications for virtually all view cameras currently made. I found this to be very useful when purchasing a camera. One slight warning however. If a particular specification is extremely important to you, try to confirm with the manufacturer or the distributor that the specification shown in Streobel's appendix is correct. I purchased a Linhof Technikardan for a lot of reasons, one of which was the fact that I wanted a revolving back and the Stroebel appendix indicates that the Technikardan has a revolving back. It doesn't.

-- Brian Ellis (, February 06, 1998.

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