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Photogs / Photo Exhibits This is the place to discuss a particular Photographer (work, style, life, whatever), as well as to post Gallery and Museum Photo Exhibitions and your own impressions of them. As we march on in this new digital world, it is often too easy to forget about the visual importance of the photographic print, as well as their financial importance to the photographer. It is also interesting to remember that some guy named Gene Smith shot with lenses that many lens test reading "never had a picture published in their life" amateurs would turn up their their noses at, as being "unacceptable."

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Negatives
Old 01-09-2013   #1
Harry Lime
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Negatives

Joe Rosenthal
Flag raising on Iwo Jima, Feb. 23, 1945

Speed Graphic
4x5 negative

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Old 01-09-2013   #2
Harry Lime
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Henri Cartier-Bresson
'Behind the Gare St.Lazare', 1932

Leica LTM / Elmar 3.5/50 (?)

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Old 01-09-2013   #3
lynnb
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Wow, Harry. Where are the negs stored?
Thanks for posting!
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Old 01-09-2013   #4
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Where are these negatives? Are you the person holding them? Amazing to see these pieces of history. I have a book somewhere, it might be titled The Negative or something like that, and it had similar images of someone holding the negatives of famous images. I don't think these were in it if I remember correctly. Thanks for posting these!
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Old 01-09-2013   #5
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No, no. I'm not anywhere near them. :-)

Over the years I've stumbled across picture of famous negatives and saved them.
Fascinating to see them instead of the print.


I thought it would be interesting to start a thread where we post the negative of a famous photo. They are out there on the internets, but not always easy to find.

But it really has to be a genuine picture of the real negative, not an invert of a print. And it has to be a famous image. :-)


Have at it.
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Old 01-09-2013   #6
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Dorothea Lange
Migrant Mother, Nipomo, Calif. Mar. 1936

Graflex RB (?)
4x5 negative

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Old 01-09-2013   #7
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Have often looked at the positive from Dorothea Lange and thought the picture said so much..wow, so does the negative.
Great thread thank you
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Old 01-09-2013   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Harry Lime View Post
Henri Cartier-Bresson
'Behind the Gare St.Lazare', 1932

Leica LTM / Elmar 3.5/50 (?)

Very interesting to see that, for a man who's so famous for never cropping his images, what is arguably his most famous image is, in fact, cropped. As I recall, in one of the documentaries on HCB, he discusses this photo, and how he had to quickly stick his camera through a fence to capture it. The part that's cropped out must be that pesky fence that got in his way.
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Old 01-09-2013   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maclaine View Post
Very interesting to see that, for a man who's so famous for never cropping his images, what is arguably his most famous image is, in fact, cropped. As I recall, in one of the documentaries on HCB, he discusses this photo, and how he had to quickly stick his camera through a fence to capture it. The part that's cropped out must be that pesky fence that got in his way.
Yep it's cropped. You can see part of the fence on the right side of the frame. In the article that this image was attached to HCB was asked what happened to the missing sprocket holes. He relied that he had eaten them.

When the Germans overran France HCB supposedly buried his negatives. It is sometimes claimed that it was at this point that this negative and others were cut from their roll, but I think it may have happened earlier, sometime in the 1930's. I seem to remember reading somewhere that early on HCB did a drastic edit of his negs. Supposedly he purged the bad shots and clipped the winners from the rolls. Who knows what really happened...
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Old 01-10-2013   #10
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This is something that's missing with digital capture: Negatives as well as contact sheets - it's great to see famous photographers work in context to what else that they shot on a roll and in what sequence - unless there is a store of the original RAW files that you can go back to open up.... (If indeed you can open up a RAW file in 20/30/40.. years time?)
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Old 01-10-2013   #11
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This was Frame #40. Looks like HCB's was #39? Late roll keepers

(Website link) "...The world's most famous negative. Korda used a Leica M2 with a 90 mm lens and Kodak Plus-X film. The famous image was captured on frame number 40."

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Old 01-10-2013   #12
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Best thread idea for ages!

To see Joe's negative also brings to mind the size and cumbersome nature of the equipment guys like him were using whilst often under fire. Very impressive.

I had the idea that contact sheets were the ideal way to learn from another photographer drummed into me from my grandfather and again at college. It strips away alot of mystique initially but then can open up a realm of new thinking and creativity. What might we learn from some of these negs? Already that, perhaps, the early frames get you warmed up and later frames may be the keepers?
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Old 01-10-2013   #13
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Yep ...what Simon said.
Best thread for ages .
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Old 01-10-2013   #14
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see the book, Celebrating the Negative, by John Loengard

http://www.amazon.com/Celebrating-Ne...d=1357812710&s

and
The Contact Sheet by Steve Crist

http://www.amazon.com/Contact-Sheet-...=1357813344&sr

two very fine books
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Old 01-10-2013   #15
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Absolute great idea for a thread !! Maybe somebody can mark this as sticky ?
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Old 01-10-2013   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by c.poulton View Post
This is something that's missing with digital capture: Negatives as well as contact sheets - it's great to see famous photographers work in context to what else that they shot on a roll and in what sequence - unless there is a store of the original RAW files that you can go back to open up.... (If indeed you can open up a RAW file in 20/30/40.. years time?)
Maybe we'll be showing each other electron microscope photographs of SSD storage sections.
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Old 01-10-2013   #17
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One of my favourites from André Kertész

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Old 01-10-2013   #18
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junku nishimura, accidental double exposures

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Old 01-10-2013   #19
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Harry, those are great as are the others. Somehow you expect these famous negatives to have a sparkle that your own don't. But they just look like normal negatives. That HCB negative looks even sub normal, but I'm sure I'm wrong.

I agree; great thread.
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Old 01-10-2013   #20
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Cool thread... nice one SSS.
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Old 01-10-2013   #21
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A RAW file is, quite literally, nothing.
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Old 01-10-2013   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 5:00 PM View Post
A RAW file is, quite literally, nothing.
You can store it, move it, retrieve it, manipulate it, output it in various ways, so it must be something.

Cool thread, through.

Gary
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Old 01-10-2013   #23
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What I mean is that unlike a negative, a RAW file has no direct relationship to the final image/output. It's not a "digital negative." If it is something, it's something far less than a negative.
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Old 01-10-2013   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 5:00 PM View Post
What I mean is that unlike a negative, a RAW file has no direct relationship to the final image/output. It's not a "digital negative." If it is something, it's something far less than a negative.
I remember reading that future archaeologists will wonder why in 1995 everybody stopped taking pictures.
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Old 01-10-2013   #25
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A RAW file is, quite literally, nothing.
... I'm pretty sure it has some 1s in there too
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Old 01-10-2013   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by raydm6 View Post
This was Frame #40. Looks like HCB's was #39? Late roll keepers

(Website link) "...The world's most famous negative. Korda used a Leica M2 with a 90 mm lens and Kodak Plus-X film. The famous image was captured on frame number 40."

... I always thought the famous Che image was a crop of a group shot.
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Old 01-10-2013   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Harry Lime View Post
Joe Rosenthal
Flag raising on Iwo Jima, Feb. 23, 1945

Speed Graphic
4x5 negative

Interesting image -- maybe it's illustrating my ignorance, but I find it interesting that this 4x5 negative is rectangular, rather than the roughly "T-shape" produced by modern film holders -- when did that change happen, and how was the film held flat in those old holders?
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Old 01-10-2013   #28
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impressive!!!
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Old 01-10-2013   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by charjohncarter View Post
That HCB negative looks even sub normal, but I'm sure I'm wrong.
From what I have read many of HCB's negatives are a nightmare to print. It sounds like the exposure was sometimes off by a few stops. There was an exhibit a few years back at the Getty and they had a few of his prints. I was surprised to see how technically mediocre many where. A lot of them looked 'chalky', like the printer had tostruggled with an over/under exposed negative. Many were also slightly out of focus. :-)
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Old 01-10-2013   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mbisc View Post
Interesting image -- maybe it's illustrating my ignorance, but I find it interesting that this 4x5 negative is rectangular, rather than the roughly "T-shape" produced by modern film holders -- when did that change happen, and how was the film held flat in those old holders?
What do you mean by T-shaped?

thx
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Old 01-10-2013   #31
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^ It doesn't have the typical film holder masking around the edges. Maybe it is a dupe of some kind, but the envelope says, "Original".
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Old 01-10-2013   #32
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Quote:
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^ It doesn't have the typical film holder masking around the edges. Maybe it is a dupe of some kind, but the envelope says, "Original".
I see. I think the article mentioned that it was his own personal safety neg.
Let me try to see if I can find that again.
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Old 01-10-2013   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Harry Lime View Post
From what I have read many of HCB's negatives are a nightmare to print. It sounds like the exposure was sometimes off by a few stops. There was an exhibit a few years back at the Getty and they had a few of his prints. I was surprised to see how technically mediocre many where. A lot of them looked 'chalky', like the printer had tostruggled with an over/under exposed negative. Many were also slightly out of focus. :-)
Well, at least I'm not the only one that thinks that his negatives may be lacking.
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Old 01-10-2013   #34
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That is a great article. Thanks for posting.
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Old 01-10-2013   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Harry Lime View Post
I see. I think the article mentioned that it was his own personal safety neg.
Let me try to see if I can find that again.
The "personal safety neg"-part would make sense then.

What I mean with T-Shape is demonstrated here (a contact print of one of my negs). It clearly shows the edges, and the absence thereof at the top-right and top-left of the print:


Qutb Minar - Alai Darwaza by nbg90455, on Flickr
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Old 01-10-2013   #36
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Well, at least I'm not the only one that thinks that his negatives may be lacking.
I find it comforting that someone with his genius and experience still had trouble keeping exposure and focus perfect while pursuing candid shots!

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Old 01-10-2013   #37
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or maybe it didn't and still doesn't matter all that much...
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Old 01-10-2013   #38
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Fascinating thread, thanks for starting it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Harry Lime View Post
Dorothea Lange
Migrant Mother, Nipomo, Calif. Mar. 1936

Graflex RB (?)
4x5 negative



It's interesting, you can (just) make out the retouched thumb of the mother as it's wrapped around the pole (bottom left corner as you look the negative - the index finger was left untouched). When looking at the positive it's well nigh impossible to see it. Very fine retouching needlework.

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Old 01-10-2013   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zauhar View Post

I find it comforting that someone with his genius and experience still had trouble keeping exposure and focus perfect while pursuing candid shots!

Randy
Maybe his "sloppiness" in things technical allowed him to be more prolific by ... pushing the shutter release at that right moment rather than, twiddling the exposure controls or focus ring.
The pursuit of technical perfection was never as easy as it is today.
I still often miss the perfect moment even with the "latest and greatest" gear to be had.
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Old 01-14-2013   #40
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Quote:
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A RAW file is, quite literally, nothing.
+1 !
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