ask for reference of LF photo : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

hi, i plan to step out for LF photography, but before that i want to learn more about the view/field camera, techniques to see if i can live with this, i find a book "use the view camera" from Steve Simmons, will it be a good reference for starter? will it also mention the " field camera"? also, what 's the pros and cons of Linhof technika V and toyo 45AII, which will u recommend to a green LF user? thanks a lot!!

-- benz (, January 28, 2002


-- benz, From my point of view, as someone who is also quite new to LF photography, Steve Simmons book is the easiest to understand, and probably the best written of all the books I've read on the subject. It is certainly the only book I've read that discusses older equiptment and that is an important point, since most folks start out with older cameras and lenses that they can afford to purchase. Simmons View Camera magazine is a great resource for learning and inspiration. There has been a lot of digital stuff in it lately, but if that is or isn't your cup of tea there are still things I can learn from those articles too. Don't be put off by all the hype regarding $20,000 digital backs. IMHO you don't need that stuff to take good photographs, in fact too much gear just makes things more confusing. Stick with a simple camera in good condition, one lens in a working shutter, one film/developer combination , a few filters if youre shooting B&W ,a good light meter, a sturdy tripod, a cable release and have at it! I've seen many wonderful portfolios published in View Camera using very basic equiptment. Besides View Camera and Simmons Book, I think this forum provides the most comprehensive source of LF information that I'm aware of, especially when you want to add something to your kit or try a technique that is new to you, since there are so many photographers here who have experience in the areas you'll soon be exploring. There are many other LF websites with excellent information as well. Good Luck!

-- John Kasaian (, January 29, 2002.

The Simmons book is excellent. I learned everything I know about LF from that book and this forum.


-- Sandy Sorlien (, January 29, 2002.


Nothing really to add here. Just to agree with the others. Simmons' book is great for beginners. I think that you will find yourself using it as a reference for a long time.

-- Dave Karp (, January 29, 2002.

Hi Benz, I started shooting LF 3 years ago only and my first camera, which I am still using, actually was a Toyo 45AII. Although no camera is perfect, I am quite satisfied with this choice and do not believe there is much more to get buying a Technika; specially if considering that a new Toyo 45 AII is less expensive than a used Technika. Good luck with your decision.

-- Jean-Marie Solichon (, January 29, 2002.

benz... a book by Joseph Foldes titled "Large-Format Camera Practice" published 1969 by American Photographic Book Publishing Company. It is a VERY easy book to understand, and it covers everything you need to know. Great information on lens focal length selection, camera position, perspective, and a wonderful explanation of the camera's movements. Lots of clear illustrations and easy to understand theories without getting technically overloaded with numbers. Combined with this forum it would be a great start. -Dave

-- Dave Richhart (, January 29, 2002.

Benz, get the book , but also use the wealth of information/knowledge/experience/advice on this forum!! No question is too simple/stupid to afford a great response. The beauty here is that if you're stuck you can engage in "conversation" which you can't do with a book. All of us are here to learn/share no matter what our experience!! Contributors will call a spade a spade and there have been some "heated" debates, but everyone here is VERY FRIENDLY!! Much better than a book!!

-- paul owen (, January 29, 2002.

thanks every comment, i feel warm in accessing this forum, i do agree that books, and other resources in the web, esp info from this forum are very helpful, starting from zero , i now have little bit more concept about LF, i tend to have more info and literature search about the the camera models , and their pros and cons , more LF techniques, before making final decision, anyway , thanks every body here,:)

-- benz (, January 29, 2002.

I favor Stroebel's View Camera Basics. I also have the Simmons' book, but it didn't spell things out enough for me when I was really struggling to understand very basic things; Stroebel's explanations and the many accompanying pictures and diagrams helped immensely.

-- Katharine Thayer (, January 29, 2002.


I agree with all of the comments made . . . with this addition: GO MAKE PICTURES. Reading is very good but doing it is better. No one ever learned the right way with out do it wrong first. In my case doing it wrong repeatedly. Lessons learned better that way. Go expose film. It will teach you plenty. LOL!

-- Steve Feldman (, January 30, 2002.

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