©Andrew A. Smith 2014-2019 All Rights Reserved

Large Format Photography


Large format photography can be defined in many ways.  At its most basic, this medium involves larger pieces of film including, but not limited to, 4 inches x 5 inches and 8 inches x 10 inches in size.  By way of comparison, "small format" or 35 millimeter film is about 1 inch x 1.5 inches big.  Coupled with an "old-fashioned" frequently all-mechanical camera, which has no batteries, no buttons, no power switch and that shows you your subject upside down and backwards, this big film transports you back in time and catapults your art forward in time.  Coupled with a camera that can make movements and adjustments that are literally impossible for a smaller camera to make, this big film evokes a symphony orchestra: bigger is not necessarily better, but when well-trained and skilled musicians come together, the depth and tonality of the sound is different and more remarkable when there are more of them.  Big film has the capacity to take in more of the natural world, and then it has more to give back when the final product is viewed.  It is the epitome of the chess analogy I drew in my artist's statement: you must spend time learning how the large format camera moves, you must spend time setting it up,  you must account for all of the accessories and tools that are not built into the camera, you must think about the art you are trying to create, but when (and if) it all comes together, the possibilities are endless.