When a day is as bright and luminous as this afternoon was, the
opportunity to work with the 8"x10" camera is seized instantly. For all
the demands and limitations the larger, heavier camera places on my
working process, I simply see better with the larger camera, finding the
most fluid tool to express myself with. Elisabeth hadn't work with me
and the 8"x10" camera before, but because we'd made numerous successful
images the first and second time she modeled, I had little concern
about the longer poses the large format camera would require.
the small space we were working in, the limited number of exposures
that the 8"x10" camera permits also worked well; we began the session
concentrating on portraits, and then moved to bodyscapes and more
abstract images. Where often with smaller formats, the pressure in a
session is to come up with ever more poses and compositions to record,
with the twelve negatives per session with the 8"x10", it is more a case
of making the most of what limited images can be found.
When we'd made our dozen exposures, Elisabeth and I brought the session to a close. The natural flow of things, between the slower camera, and more considered poses, seemed to pay of with a number of striking poses in all three styles - pseudo-abstract bodyscapes, nude portraits, and more traditional figure images. I am fully aware that more images would have been recorded if I'd used the smaller, lighter Mamiya RB, but I seriously doubt that any better images would have been made. That, and the extra fidelity that the 8"x10" negatives provide left me with a great feeling of joy after the session - the singular pleasure of making such a striking series of images.M