Today´s editorial can´t be about anything other but AFUK´s latest baby and its first steps. Evla, a Slovak photographer, wrote a very special article about her first encounter with KUFA, which is a large format camera created by Juraj Tomík and produced by the Czech design company Manu Manu. You will find more information on this project in tomorrow´s article by Juraj Tomík. Now we keep fingers crossed for the KUFA project to be successful so that more photographers could have the honour of working with it. Hopefully you will have a great time reading the following lines …
How I happened to be lured into large-format, I don´t know – but I guess it was quite easy. I have always heard that „the bigger the better“ and I finally get it. Now I use 35 mm film only for slides, as I haven´t seen them in large-format yet.
KUFA is far from being small and light, that´s for sure. Besides, it requires a tripod with a Arca-Swiss clamp and up until now I haven´t had one at home. Actually, the person responsible for all this is Ďuro Tomík, who has been talking about KUFA with such enthusiasm and love that I couldn´t resist. Despite my little interest in photographing landscapes I decided to borrow it. I happened to be in town by car (with Mamiya and my tripod) and I managed to park relatively close to the darkroom (in Bratislava), so I decided not to waste time, while it was such a nice weather.
About four passers-by offered me a helping hand when they saw me walking in my dress and pumps, Mamiya under my arm, a huge backpack with KUFA on my back and holding a massive tripod in each hand. I couldn´t wait to unpack it and give it a go. Naturally, I missed a joint demonstration at the darkroom. After all, I could not imagine then why I would ever want to use such a camera! Despite not having been taught what to do, somehow instinctively I knew how to use it. Well, I did not exactly know. I was guessing what to do and the first attempt was successful probably by chance.
It´s because KUFA has an amazing capacity for various compositions, for having the picture perfect in every possible way but also for making beautiful atmospheric pictures with blurred edges. Under the black cloth, it is essesntial to learn to control everything by touch and KUFA allows to do that quite easily.
Perhpas one cannot make classic portraits, still lifes and macros with it. However, it is absolutely perfect for compositions with figurative and landscape motifs. Kufa really is a „must-have“!