Shooting a 300MP photo of a Hotrod – full frame digital vs large format film

Oct 3, 2016

Markus Hofstätter

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Shooting a 300MP photo of a Hotrod – full frame digital vs large format film

Oct 3, 2016

Markus Hofstätter

We love it when our readers get in touch with us to share their stories. This article was contributed to DIYP by a member of our community. If you would like to contribute an article, please contact us here.

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hotrod_film_vs_digital

Recently, I was tasked with shooting a hotrod. It was exciting from the beginning, because these kinds of cars are pretty rare here. The owner also wanted his dog sitting on the fender. When you hear that (from a photographer’s point of view), it does not sound that difficult to do. But the picture also has to be huge – 100 megapixel are too few.

Three times of that is the minimum requirement for the print. A digital medium format camera gives you 100 Megapixel, maximum 200 in one shot. These are not that easy to rent and they are very expensive too.

My solution was to do a stitched panorama digitally with Canon 5D mkIII, Canon 100mm Macro and the Nodal ninja. Additionally, I shot with my large format camera, a Linhof Mastertechnika with a Kodak Portra 160 VC sheet film.

g5b3570-edit

A panorama with a dog in the picture – was this a joke? Absolutely not. I just had to use the right frame for the dog. The more difficult part was to make the picture with the Linhof Master Technika. I had only 1/18th of a Second at F11. But luckily the dog was very calm and patient enough, so I only had to use 4 sheet films to get the job done.

img_4331

Both cameras delivered enough resolution – each photo was around about 300 Megapixel total. The Linhof managed it with only one shot (High-end scan from the shop) and the Canon required 24 separate photos stitched together.

img_4389

After some hours of work, I finished both versions (I had to do a lot of post processing, because the grass was not even, the grill was full of flies, the inspection plate was disturbing in the windshield, one tire had a funny color and the tire treads were full of grass and stones).

The stitched digital image
The stitched digital image
The scanned large format photograph
The scanned large format photograph

 

 

If you’re interested in pixel peeping, here are a few high resolution crops for comparison.

The dog

Radiator grill

Headlight

I’m so happy that the customer chose the Analog version, it fits so much better to the car. I’m pretty sure, that this cars were shot with large format cameras too back then.

About the Author

Markus Hofstätter is a professional portrait, events and sports photographer based in Austria. He has a passion for analogue and wet plate photography. He loves travelling to visit new places and meeting new people. You can find out more about him on his website or blog, follow his work on Instagram or Facebook or reach out to him through Twitter. This article was also published here, and shared with permission.

 

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7 responses to “Shooting a 300MP photo of a Hotrod – full frame digital vs large format film”

  1. lazlo toth Avatar
    lazlo toth

    It would be great to hear more about the details of the shot – lighting, camera movements, software, any issues besides the dog. In any case, it’s a good argument for doing as much cleaning before the shoot as possible!

    I’ve used the same process to create 1:1 digital versions of building murals and you can be sure there’s a lot more to it!

    1. Markus Hofstätter Avatar
      Markus Hofstätter

      Thanks for asking Lazlo,

      Lightning changed during the shoot, the digital one was shot when the sun was still available. The final one, was one of the last analog ones. The sun was ready to set and there was mostly shade.

      The digital one, was more for backup, because I had a slow shutter on the Linhof (1/18th of a second in combination with a dog is far away from safe)

      As a wet plate photographer I’m used to prepare everything in advance, because there is no retouching afterwards (yes there is, but that’s pretty difficult).
      Time was an issue for this shooting, because we nearly canceled it because of a reason. Some time later we decided to still do the shoot. Because of that we were a bit in a hurry. Lotta (the dog) was really calm and patient, but after the first hour it was even enough for her too (it was a pretty hot day).

      I would love to see some of your work.

  2. Laurent Roy Avatar
    Laurent Roy

    Too bad there is no détail pic of the stitching areas…

  3. Michael Lombardi Avatar
    Michael Lombardi

    But, why 300MP?????

  4. Arcmor Avatar
    Arcmor

    The top most shot, which I am assuming is a simple single shot, actually looks better than the stitched one. Why is that?

    1. Markus Hofstätter Avatar
      Markus Hofstätter

      Because the stiched one is done with a nodal adapter and a 100mm lens – this looks like a wide angle shot in comparison to the analog one

  5. Markus Hofstätter Avatar
    Markus Hofstätter

    If you guys wanna see the final product on the wall, have a look here:
    http://blog.markus-hofstaetter.at/2016/10/300-megapixel-hotrod-part-ii/