Like a dog with someone's favorite slipper....I just can't let go of all the landscapes I shot last week. Here's another one...

Note to self: Next trip to Iceland, bring a car full of supermodels to act as close foreground subjects in my photographs. This would give my images a heightened sense of depth that I'm afraid they are missing at the moment. But I do like this craggy sunset shot. The very end of the day, after the crowds headed to their buses.

Some one asked a serious question on the blog a few days ago and that was whether it's worth it to bring a large format camera on their expedition to Iceland. I can only answer for myself but my advice would be absolutely not.

Now, I am presuming they are referring to a large format, view camera. Something with a bellows and front and rear standards. Something that requires a dark cloth or a hood under which to focus. Something that takes 4x5 or 8x10 inch sheet film.

The simple reason I would advise this way is the prevalence and unpredictability of the wind in most places; especially near the sea shores. I think most bellows cameras are in their happiest zone with no wind and get progressively more anxious as the winds pick up. Somewhere around 15-20 mph the bellows+wind would make stability impossible and higher gusts than that would eventually cause the bellows to lose its structural integrity and its ability to be light tight.

Bring a camera you are ready to carry all day, deploy quickly and use mostly handheld.


Eric Rose said...

I know of quite a few photographers who have taken their LF gear to Iceland and did quite well with it. However your points are well taken. While I still use my LF and MF gear on a regular basis if I were to be lucky enough to get to Iceland I would only take my Panasonic gear. Although I am sure I will be very tempted to pack the Blad gear as well.


Edward Richards said...

A field camera, such as a Linhof Technika, would do fine in the wind, but you would need a big umbrella to steady the tripod. Someone who wanted to do that would need a very different sort of trip. I have hauled view cameras on group trips and it is at best unsatisfactory. If you had plenty of time, and were going to concentrate on one location, especially if you were shooting architecture, you could make it work. But I really doubt you could get better images than if you used a D850 or Z7 and modern computational techniques such as stitching, perspective correction, and focus stacking. It would be about the process, not the images. If you are shooting for yourself, not for a commercial client, the process is most of the experience - otherwise just use your phone and make a record to jog your memory. So, from my painful experience, if you want the LF process, you either need to be with an LF group or on your own, and you don't plan to cover much ground. If you want the best chance at high rez images, use FF digital and your computer. Note - I said best chance at high rez images, not best chance at best images. Galen Rowland showed us that the best landscape images are from traveling light and moving fast. Architecture is a little different, because more pixels allow more correction and flexiblity.