True or False? You be the judge . . . : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

American/Parisian photographer Man Ray tells this story (don't try this with important clients!):

". . . I've even taken photographs without a lens on my camera. Once, I had to photograph a painter and I arrived with my studio camera and tripod and everything. I started to set up, but I'd forgotten the lens. I knew the size of my lens because I prescribed my own glasses, I knew optics so well. I knew that my lens had a 12-inch focal length, but of course I realized it would be a very fuzzy picture. I had a roll of tape and taped my own eyeglass lens onto the opening in my camera and just let the black cloth down, with a little hole in it, to diaphragm it. I opened the cloth and let it down, and I got the portrait of Matisse--a beautiful, soft-focus photograph with all the details visible."

So next time someone with glasses asks you, "What lens should I buy?" you can (if you believe Man Ray) just tell them to save their money for film (because they'll probably want to bracket a bit!). . . .

-- Micah (, June 16, 2000


sure it's true! and I once saw McGuyver build a 20x24 view camera out of a jar of mayonnaise, an old Gideon's Bible and two lines of cocaine. Why, I myself built a pinhole camera out of my rectum and the hood off of a '63 pontiac Sun uses coffee instead of film.

-- Trib (, June 16, 2000.

Not only that, but if you wear bifocals, you've got one of those trick near-far filters!

-- Steve Singleton (, June 16, 2000.

Also with Trib's pinhole camera, your pictures will have a nice brown tone.

-- Don Sparks (, June 17, 2000.

Don't think this will work well with my astigmatism!

-- John H. Henderson (, June 19, 2000.

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