A consistent theme in the Cassandra work is fog; less in images, then in when and where the images were made. On this morning, the world around us was almost invisible, shrouded in a dense mist.
Because it was foggy and cool, we opted to work indoors for the
morning, permitting me the time and setting to begin working with a new
camera format - a 12x20 camera owned by my friend, Jeff, and offered for
use to me when time and circumstances permit. As we were going to work
indoors anyways, I thought this was as good a time as any to try the new
Because the film is so large, the camera needs very
long lenses; for the indoor photos I was using a 360mm lens, which
required a very small lens opening to ensure enough of the image would
be in focus. As a result, the images I made of Cassandra on the couch
were four seconds long; fortunately all I was asking of her was to lie
still; if there had been anything more dynamic involved, I doubt that
such a long exposure would have been possible.
Because the large camera takes so much effort to use, we only made two images with it, the remainder of the morning being spent working with the 8"x10". After working with the 12x20, the Toyo seemed practically speedy to use, and it was quite enjoyable to move from a camera that was unfamiliar and somewhat daunting, back to one that has become very familiar and comfortable over my six months of use. I kept the same setting for the 8"x10" images, but as opposed to creating full body images, these were portraits and partial-body nudes. Whereas in my outdoor work I seldom crop the figure, indoors, it is usually the case that I use the camera frame to crop the figure. It was the long, angular aspect ratio of the 12x20 camera that provoked me to create the nudes of Cassandra lying on the couch..