June 15, 2001

Rock Pools (Peggy's Cove, Nova Scotia)

For four years, I have wanted to work with a model of the rocks around Peggy's Cove at sunset. Every time something is set up, however, it always falls through, and this occasion was no exception! Not willing to surrender to fate however, I decided to head out to the coast anyway, and see what could be made of the rocks, light and water,
8"x10" film
We arrived at the coast about two hours before sundown, and I gathered up my backpack and tripod, and tromped down to the shore. The biggest lesson I have learned with the 8"x10" in the value of a good pack. With my 4"x5", I have been using a Lowepro photo pack, which carries reasonably loaded full of gear, but still gives me a backache at the end of the day. The Pacific pack which I have for my 8"x10" is a full-sized, internal frame pack, and while it weighs in at 20kg loaded, it rides well, and is quite easy to walk with (once I have it on my back). Moving over the rough terrain and uneven rocks wasn't a problem in any way.
8"x10" film
With only an hour or so to work, the images I made came with surprising ease - there is a comfort to working with the 8"x10" that was only hinted at with the smaller 4"x5" camera. The pace of working (slow and steady) and the care and contemplation needed before exposing a piece of film seems to really compliment my preferred way of working. While it may take some time for the technical details to be worked out and become second nature, I really am feeling that the return to 8"x10" was a perceptive move on my part. The more I work with the camera, the more I feel that it is "right". I am swiftly becoming of the opinion that getting my first 8"x10" camera, back in 1992, was simply a case of having the wrong tool at the wrong time; while I had some successes with that camera, what has happened so far this year seems to prove that camera is right for me now.

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