I’d resigned myself to selling my 8×10 Eastman #2 recently. Hadn’t been shooting it: I couldn’t quite dial in the Ektascan BR/A in Adanol, the camera was unweildy, the Ries heavy. Got discouraged, annoyed, and checked out mentally. Went so far as to put the 14″ f/6 Petzval I’d bought for it on the block.
Gratefully, it seems to be a buyer’s market right now. Got no bites. As I was mowing this weekend, I figured I’d shoot something outdoors with the 8×10 and the 14″-er and maybe that would help it move. Decided I’d put the boy in front of the lacrosse goal for an end-of-season picture. I’d had a moment of developing success with the Ektascan in HC-110; I had just enough syrup left for a couple sheets.
I set the camera up, pre-focused and waited for some clouds. Stood my son in front of the net with his stick, and fired off the shutter.
Now, I’ve been shooting the same ol’ portraits for a long time. Bored with them. Wasn’t expecting much out of this shot, but was nice to shoot something a little difference. I was not ready for the rendering this lens would give, though. I’m in love. Have some ND filters on order so I can slow things down enough to shoot my local waterfall with this lens, too. I’m reinvigorated, and the rig is off the market.
Picked up two new Petzvals today (grr – supposed to be here Wednesday). Mounted one – a Thompson 6″. Thompson was the Boston importer for Darlot, so this lens is like of that lineage. French regardless. I pulled the aperture (not sure why it was there, anyway), and the lens is about f/2.8. Makes focusing incredibly challenging – focus is in and out with the slightest movement of the bed.
Anyway, here are the first couple from this lens. I think there’s some potential here.
I’m nearly sworn off film now. I don’t enjoy the process like I used to, and let’s face it – process is a huge part of large format photography. But my son and his girlfriend were hanging out today, and I had an image in mind, and it needed a certain lens, which put it on 4×5 film. So I dragged out the Asanuma and made the shot today, and it was fun. But I’m not diving back into LF head-long any time soon.
4×5 Arista.EDU in HC-110 dil H, no-name 5-1/2″ Petzval lens.