The Bomber

on September 05, 2017
Well, if you need to do a heavy job and you need to do a lot of it, you need a bomber. And a ground crew. It need not be a light machine, it need not be dazzlingly fast, and it need not be fashionable-looking. It does not even need to work in pitch-black conditions. But it does need to carry a heavy load, and to do it reliably for a long time. And it does need to be able to hit the target accurately every time. Likewise with the cameras. This is the field of the portrait studio, the product shoot, the fashion coverage. The camera might very well live on a tripod or studio stand for much of the time. It will be working with studio lights, and may be able to hover down about the native ISO of the sensor...delivering the best resolution and dynamic range. It must be capable of making large files to allow for post-production work. It can be physically heavy, as it does not need to be taken up the side of mountains or into nightclub brawls. It can be unwieldy, as the settings are unlikely to need to be changed least if the photographer can eventually figure out what actually works. ( Note: in the absence of skill or science, trial and error works pretty good. Bit hard on your subjects if you are Judge Roy Bean, but...). It can be slow. Most studio work is slower than a cricket test. Product illustration is only fast when you are shooting ice cream. As long as the camera synchs with the lights it is fine. If you can darken the studio effectively you can work with synch speeds as slow as 1/30 of a second. It need not be light on batteries. You can keep a couple of them charging while you work and change over easily. Provided the picture box will get more than a couple dozen shots per charge you should be fine. Likewise space on memory cards. Like Hubert Zepke said when his pilots were worried about running out of ammunition or fuel: " Shoot it all off and come right back. We've got plenty of machine gun bullets and gasoline and you can have it for free. " The heavy camera has changed since the film days. Few of us pursue our work with large format cameras any more - which is somewhat of a pity, as they had capabilities that the digital units nowadays do not have. A studio was perfect for them, and many people learned to use the movements available to make perfect illustrations of even the most difficult subjects. The transition to digital advertising always promised backs that could be attached to our monorails and technical cameras, and to a very limited degree some were supplied. But no-one could look at the price tags that the medium format backs commanded and not blench. Unless photographers have access to Lotto wins or other people's money, the capital cost of a medium format back really knocks it cold. Of course, the proponents of medium format cameras point out that in some cases they make tilt or shift adapters...but they rarely tilt or shift very far, and the mathematics of the sensor size makes the focal lengths that you can use pretty long. People are still going back to the alternative of T/S on full-frame cameras...and doing a fair bit of price-blenching there too... Suitable candidates for the bombers were the Lancaster, the Flying Fortress, and the Liberator. If you want something quieter for your indoor work we can recommend the. Fujifilm GFX50S, the Hasselblad X1D, and the Pentax 645Z. Do not expect the bodies or lenses for small-camera prices. Featured Image: Ilyushin Sturmovik on the eastern front. Another collectible model from Hobbytech in Melville. You might consider this a ground-attack aircraft rather than a classic bomber but there are bombs under the wings so it got added to the collection.