Going Dutch vs. Big in Japan

“Oh look, she has got herself a new handbag.” – “Isn’t it lovely?” – “Look at those brass details, so shiny, so classy, so bling.” – “And that delicate little carrying strap at the top – actually, quite fashionable, a slight equestrian feel to that, isn’t there.” – “Oh, and the elegance of the mahogany inlays – now if that’s not exclusive, then what is?”
LF in style
No, I did not believe for one second that I could fool you into believing that this is a little handbag. It is, of course, a viewcamera. Tachihara. *blessyou* *excuseme* And I have gotten my hands on it thanks to my friend-in-photography Karl. He is lending me the Tachihara 4×5 – which is very handy as I am, as you all know, in the middle of my first LF project already.
Now, it’s not that I don’t like shooting with Mijnher Cambo. In fact, he is a sturdy and reliable fella, just as you would expect it of a solidly built Dutchman. Seriously, the Cambo 4×5 has been great so far. (Ok, I admit I still haven’t printed the negs, but the negs actually look ok-ish…) There’s only one thing: Mijnher Cambo is rather big and bulky. And heavy, too. 4.4 kg is a bit of weight alright when you are shooting somewhere in the wilds – or intending to do a project on lighthouses, which, by their nature, tend to be perched on inaccessible rocks on the shore… The Cambo can’t be carried in a rucksack – it sits there on its monorail (people, I warn you, no jokes now!), front and back standard sticking up, the delicate lens largely unprotected. There are, in fact, no rucksacks big enough for it. And I am not even starting on the tripod needed for this square fellow.
This lovely little Japanese beauty, however, is a different ball game. Delicate, pretty and practically minded – well, metaphorically speaking (as I am obviously in the mood to do today), it is a petite geisha of cameras. Made from beautiful wood and put together with shiny brass screws and fittings, it folds together into a small little square, that indeed you can carry with the ditzy little leather strap attached to it. (Probably appeals to the women photographers a bit more than to a big butch photo pro *roar*). Rucksack? No problem – it weighs about 1.5 kg and its dimensions are 216 x 94 x 196 mm. Folded down, the lens board fits neatly in, protected by the bellows. Ideal for location shoots.
So I look forward to testing out the Tachihara. One plate is shot already, but not yet processed. Instead of going Dutch, I’ll try to be big in Japan. *um* Wordplay is flying low today, better sign off…

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