April 20, 2019

Using a Speed Graphic for snapshots

Anniversary Speed Graphic Speed Graphic. (Shot with a Crown Graphic. HP5+ in R5 Monobath)

Using a 4x5 Speed Graphic for taking snapshots is a terrible idea. There was a time when lugging a giant, hard to load Speed Graphic was a popular, professional option for photojournalism. That time has long passed.

This didn’t stop me from pulling mine out of storage and exposing a few sheets around the house. Besides, I wanted to see if it still had a light leak. Sadly, it does.

Gail, Charlie, and Norm Gail with dogs (and a light leak). Speed Graphic 4x5. Ilford Delta 100 (expired 2013). HC-110.

A nice thing about shooting 4x5 film is that I don’t have to finish a roll before processing. If I want, I can process each negative immediately after exposing it. It’s practically as convenient as digital! Well no, it’s the opposite of digital, but still.

I may find someone who can give the Speed Graphic a once-over and fix the light leak. The whole process of shooting 4x5 film can be terribly frustrating, but it’s also a lot of fun. And those big negatives!


photography photo film 4x5


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