newbie introduction

Chris Frear

New Member
Registered User
Hi All

My name is Chris. I'm based in Eastern Lincolnshire, where I'm a photojournalist by trade; documenting interesting people in my local area.

When not using Digital for work, I often use a medium format TLR for fun. I think it harks back to the days 20 years when I started serious photography at college using film. In the summer of 2016, just before a house move I had the luck to pick up a Calumet 5x4 Monorail on a well known onlilen auction site. A guy in Liverpool had picked it up from a dealer in the states, but couldn't get on with it. His loss as they say was my gain. The dealer was able to tell me its history, he'd “made” my camera less than 12 months previously from the best parts of several identical cameras. So its a “Mongrel” camera of sorts. But it got all the best bits.

It didn't come with a lens so a local photographer in Scotland kindly lent me a lens. Its a bit tricky to use, I'll post more on this later in case anyone can help.

I've noticed that alot of people seem to use Large Format purely for landscape work. I'm using the Calumet for portraiture. Just before the move, I got the chance to take the Calumet out on “location”. Unlike well known photographers who always seem to have nice warm cosy studios, I was freezing in a rural farm yard, which had more potholes than the moon has craters. The farmer had diversified, turning his barns and cattle sheds into storage units. One of which was being used by a local lady, who's hobby is race car driving. I took her portrait beside her car, using the Calumet in harsh bright mid day sun. Admittedly not my “greatest” portrait, but reasonable none the less, especially when I was using a strange system in a less than ideal climate.

You can see it here,

Sicne arriving back in Lincs a year ago, I haven't had time to get the Calumet out of storage. Trying to find both the time and the energy. Surfing the net the other night I found this forum.