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Large Format Nature Photography Paperback – October 1, 2001
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Top Customer Reviews
What the book does best is present Dykinga's own views about using the view camera in the field. For example, he has very particular preferences for lens sizes based on his expereience as a photojournalist. He details his procedure for focusing the camera in the field. In addition he shows how he has marked his equipment with reminders to help aid in the field. For instance, he has added markings to indicate exposure corrections for bellows extensions right along the rail. He has also marked his lens boards with the amount of rise and fall available with the coverage of the lens. He gives tips on working in bad weather. It is much like getting tips and tricks from an experienced user in a workshop. As a sidenote there is some material on his experience with digital.
What the book is not is a comprehensive guide to the large format camera. I would suggest those looking for that see books by Kodak, Simmons, Stone, and others. It will not give an especially technical presentation of the materials. The book did not meet *all* my hopes and dreams. I would have liked some more tips on composition and picking out a view camera. It does not cover black and white. Sometimes his presentation is so personal that it may not apply to how you like to work. However, there are so few books on this subject and most are more like textbooks. You can definitely read this book from cover to cover without being bored. It is a welcome addition to the subject and fills a gap in photography books.
It is also a spellbinding book of nature photographs. Each one is a like little jewel.
I believe some of reviewers on this site who express disappointment must have been looking for a primer or handbook, which this is not. Anyone thinking of trying LF or already immersed in it, no matter how successfully, should own this book and study it closely. It's all pleasure.
The section on camera movements is particularly helpful. Jack has created excellent pictorial diagrams to show the effects of camera movements on the focusing plane. In addition there are chapters on film exposure, reading the light and filters.
Making the commitment to large format photography can be a very daunting experience. This book helps. It is an excellent reference tool. One that I would not be without.
Currently I am using a Linhof Technikardan 23 which uses 120 roll film in the 6x6 through 6x9cm formats. Nonetheless the 4x5 principles apply just the same as the Technikardan is a view camera as well.
I must confess that this book has me thinking about moving up to 4x5. Some say once you get this in your mind you will never be satisfied with anything less. Of course roll film is easier to shoot, process, and scan but the size of those 4x5 chromes laying on his light table are something to behold.
One might take the book as an endorsement for Arca-Swiss although Jack it not the only one to speak so well of the camera.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I read several Amazon reviews about this book, that it serves as a good field guide for the Arca...Read more
Jack Dykinga's highly acclaimed talent as a photographer does not translate into...Read more