Close-up and Hand-held with a Linhof Technica V

American White Pelican Nest
American White Pelican Eggs

You are not supposed to be able to do this.  Many will tell you that hand holding with a 4×5 does not result in good photos; the depth of field is too shallow, the camera shake is too great and the cameras are just too awkward to deal with, and closeup – forget about it.  Of course, hundreds would argue with that.  I am one of them, but every one of those statements is accurate to a point.  Yes, 4×5 cameras are awkward, but press cameras were designed to be shot handheld for reporting the news on the streets, sports etc.  The Linhof Technica V is a field camera which means it has more movements but is often heavier than the press camera.  Nevertheless it can be hand-held well even especially with side grip they are often sold with.  Maintaining depth of field is a problem given the long focal lengths of large format cameras, but shallow depth of field can be used for effect too. Anyway, I was able to the photo of these American White Pelican eggs by using the Linhof’s bright and excellent coupled rangefinder.  I took advantage of the bright light and shot at f16 with a 150mm lens.  I used a  6×9 back, which provided the perfect crop for the subject. Note: The pelicans had abandoned this nest.  Do not disturb nesting birds for the sake of a photograph.
Purchase photo of American White Pelican Nest and Eggs

Location: Terrell’s Island, Lake Butte des Morts, Wisconsin
Technical Data: Linhof Technika V 4X5 – hand held
150mm f5.6 Fujinon W
Graflex 6×9 back
Ilford Delta 400
Processed in Ilford DD-X manufacturer’s recommended processing
Film Scanned with Epson Perfection V750 Pro scanner

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