How to Set Up and Use a Large Format Camera

Interested in large format photography? Even if you’re already out there practicing, or you’re just getting started, the process of taking pictures with a big 8×10 camera can take some getting used to. In this video, photographer Tim Layton takes us through the steps of setting up an 8×10 large format camera, metering the scene, loading the film and taking the shot:

Using his Shen-Hao 8×10 large format camera, Layton breaks down the steps of how to use the very cool camera. It may require a bit of patience to even just get the camera set up, but there’s something meditative and calming in the process. From mounting the camera on the tripod to installing the right lens for the scene, Layton gives thorough instructions every step of the way.

mounting lens photo

large format ground glass

The only problem (aside from the sometimes out of focus video) is that we don’t get to see the final image. It was once on hisĀ Analog Film Photography website but no longer. Maybe we can see some of your 8x10s instead?

Let us know how you shoot large format and show us some of your best pics!

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One response to “How to Set Up and Use a Large Format Camera”

  1. leon says:

    wonderful to see the use of film. 10×8 is big and very expensive. However I have used my huge old 10×8 with paper negative which cuts the cost down tremendously . Too big to use outside. My 5×4 is used for both inside and outside images. Again shooting paper negatives is very cheap 4 shots to a 10×8 sheet of paper.I still love to see the large image hanging up in the darkroom. I still use 35mm and my phone for taking images. The apps are brilliant and can be used to calculate bellow factor also. They have taken the place of my light meters although they are still in my bag .

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