I am a large format landscape photographer--at least I used to be. It's been quite a while since I took any shots, but I have all the equipment: Eight cameras, a full darkroom in my house. I took up this "hobby" (actually, hobby is a poor word for what is one demanding bloody obsession) while living in Northern Japan in 1985; the landscape there was still somewhat unspoiled by industrialization and sprawl, though the Japanese were wasting no time in subduing the remaining open space; if you think we're hard on land here, you should see how they regard "nature." I thought the opportunity of exploiting that opportunity was too great to be missed, so immediately began exploring the countryside and farming communities for subject-matter. I spent a month in Kyoto, photographing the gardens (both sacred and profane), using a 4x5 with Ektachrome slide film.
When I returned home, I took up large format black and white image-making seriously, stepping up quickly to 8x10, and then 11x14 formats. With negatives that large, the method of printing is contact, since the apparatus needed to enlarge a negative of that size becomes increasingly unwieldy; besides, one of the great attractions of contact printing is the lush, highly detailed (grainless) images which are possible. As everyone knows, Edward Weston worked exclusively with contacting his 8x10 negatives. Both as an amateur collector, and later, as a professional book dealer, I've acquired and traded important books of images.