If ever there was a sport that called for high speed photography, Formula 1 is most certainly the one that comes to mind. Instead, professional photographer Joshua Paul did the exact opposite and went trackside with a 1913 Graflex 4×5 camera, transforming the world’s most technologically advanced sport into something from the early 1900s.
Unlike modern cameras, which can take as many as 20 frames per second, the 1913 Graflex can only take 20 pictures. That is 20 pictures in total. Every shot has to be framed perfectly – there are no second chances. Something we probably take for granted in the digital era.
“I received this old camera from my instructor James Fee while I was studying photography at Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California,” Joshua said.
“Another student and I cleaned his darkroom and helped him print his editions, in exchange for this vintage camera. I got lucky with this one because the bellows are very long and I can shoot macro with it.”
“It’s also the same camera Margaret Bourke-White used and is posing with on the Chrysler building.”
According to Joshua, his plan was never to cover Formula 1.
“I came to Barcelona in 2013 to see Blur play at the Primavera Sound Music Festival. Knowing the race would overlap, I applied for accreditation with Road & Track magazine. It was approved three days before my trip, and when I arrived, I was immediately invited to the Monaco GP, and subsequent races after that. That was the first time I shot a car race,” Joshua said.