On this day in 1886, Edward Weston was born. Considered one of the masters of photography, Weston had a 40 year career shooting landscapes, nudes, still life, and whatever else he could come up with to make a compelling photograph. His photography has been iconic for not only defining the California based American style of the 1900’s, but also for it’s real world value, with a 1925 nude and a 1927 photo of a shell being among the most expensive photographs ever sold.
Weston used a number of cameras throughout his career, but amongst his most frequently utilized are an 8 x 10 folding-bed camera, an 8 x 10 Universal view camera, a 4 x 5 View camera and a 3 ¼ x 4 ¼ Graflex. Because Weston shot almost exclusively at an f/16 aperture, his landscape photos needed to be exposed for roughly one to three seconds, while his still life photographs needed as much as four and a half hours to properly expose. Equally impressive is his continuous use of a large and relatively heavy 8 x 10 camera, which the photographer could routinely operate outdoors from setup to tear down in a two minute and twenty second time frame — an impressive feat considering all the steps required in shooting large format sheet film. Enclosed is a photograph of Weston holding his beloved 8 x 10 camera, and smoking a tobacco pipe, while the link below will take you to a gallery of his work. [ Edward Weston Gallery ]