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There is something unique and magical about a large format portrait, the combination of an antique lens and film makes for a portrait that suggests another era but that’s not the only thing that makes it special. The medium in itself makes it impossible for spontaneity, because of the razor thin depth of field the subjects cannot move even a hairs breadth.

The people are placed, focus is made, shutter locked, film holder goes in, dark slide out, finger on the shutter release, now the magic begins, I’m not looking though a viewfinder, I’m engaging my subject, they’re looking at me, I’m looking at them, one word from me, the right word, thwack, shutter tripped, voila, an honest and pure portrait made.

Tech specs:

Late 1950’s Graphlex Speed Graphic 4×5

Plaubel Anticomar 2.9/150 mm Lens, circa 1930’s

Ilford HP-5 film