Trying To Use Large Format For Wild Horse Photography
I have been exploring new ground this year by photographing the wild horses of Shannon County, Missouri using my Nikon F6 and black and white 35mm film.
If you have been following me very long, then you probably know that I have a long history as a large format black and white film photographer specializing in making very large silver gelatin gallery prints.
I have been deeply passionate about flowers and botanical subjects my entire life and over the last 30 years, I have created an extensive body of work featuring my love and appreciation of these subjects using large format film.
I was talking to my son and while we spend the vast majority of our time chasing the wild horses in very difficult terrain, we have noticed a trend that could possibly open up an opportunity to use my 8x10 large format gear.
We have noticed that one herd, in particular, gathers in an area on a regular basis that could be suitable for hauling in our 8x10 large format camera. If we get set up early in the morning before daybreak before they start grazing, we may have an opportunity for some portrait style images. I would probably use Ilford HP5+ and rate it at EI 400 or even EI 800 to have enough shutter speed.
You may be asking why even bother with this? I am glad you asked! The ability to very large create handmade silver gelatin gallery prints from 8x10 large format negatives is unlike any other medium or format. The quality, detail, and presence of the larger prints from these big negatives offer an experience for the viewers that simply are not possible with a small 35mm film. We upgraded to a Heiland LED cold light system last year on our 8x10 enlarger and the new prints have been nothing short of amazing.
The same could be said for the smaller roll film too. I can create images with these cameras that are not possible with large format cameras and they are special in their own way as well. Holding these smaller intimate prints and enjoying them up close is a wonderful and unique experience.
In other words, there are always tradeoffs with tools and systems. I am really excited to get even one exposure on the big film to be able to make one of my big gallery prints of the wild horses.
Keywords: analog photography, black and white, darkroom, film, fine art, large format, Missouri, photography, Shannon County, Wild Horses, Wildlife
I'm using a 6x24 fotoman camera and using Black and white film is a big option with your methods, we need to converse, I'm so happy i found your site!!
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