Shem Creek

Shem Creek Sunset, Mt Pleasant, South Carolina on 4×5 Film

This was my first photograph with the large format, 4×5 film camera.  It was taken using a Linhof Technikardan 45s Film Camera with a Schneider Symmar-S 210mm f/5.6 lens on Portra 400 film. Here is the final image I took at Shem Creek.

Shem Creek Sunset, Mt Pleasant, South Carolina. By Studio 1250

I used the 4×5 camera for a couple of different reasons.  First, using this camera makes me slow down and really think about the composition, light, and camera settings.  It improves my overall photography skills and makes me a better photographer all around. Since the medium is film, I am unable to see the final image instantaneously like a digital camera.  Therefore, I have to know exactly what the results will be before I even take the image. This forces me to not rely on technology, but rather my own knowledge and skill set.  Secondly, using 4×5 film produces extremely high resolution images. This means that the image can be enlarged to produce wall sized prints or canvases. Below is a 100% crop of the kayaks from the right side of the original image.

100% Crop of 4x5 film image.

I’m going to be exploring more 4×5 film in the future. I acknowledge that this format cannot be used in every situation.  It takes a lot of time to set up for one shot.  This photograph took approximately 30-45 minutes to set up before actually taking the photo. Even though the process is lengthy, when possible, I would love to continue using this format.

Here are some behind the scenes photos of the 4×5 camera at Shem Creek. Due to the nature of optics and lenses, when you look through the ground glass (aka the viewfinder with the grid) of the 4×5 camera the image appears upside down. Yes, you must compose the shot in this upside down state.  It’s very interesting when making camera movements in this state because the movement is opposite of what you see. The far right image below is a large canvas print of this sunset image of Shem Creek. The results are astonishing. If you like this image, you can order a copy of it.  Click on the link below!

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