Tag Archives: Film
Last week I posted some long exposures from a roll of Fuji Neopan Acros 100 and the Hasselblad shot during a night shooting in Gowanus, Brooklyn. Here are a few more from the same roll.
The shots below were developed in Kodak Xtol Developer (stock solution) at 20C for 8 minutes.
Night Long Exposure of Gowanus Canal with Downtown Brooklyn in Background, Fuji Neopan Acros 100
This was a difficult exposure, because the canal itself was so dark and the sky was lit up brightly in the background. I split the difference and chose to properly expose the dark canal.
Long Exposure of Random Office Chair and Street Art by Gowanus Canal, Brooklyn, Fuji Neopan Acros 100 Film
This was an almost 3 minute exposure, because there was very little available light and I really wanted to bring out the detail in the shot.
You can see the bushes moving about in the wind right behind the boat sign on this shot. If I recall it was a short exposure (30 seconds) because of the strong street light just above it.
Twitter pal and”Believe in Film” founder Gordon asked if I would write a short feature on shooting long exposures on film at BelieveinFilm.com. You can see the results here. The short version is that I use medium and large format film (almost always Fuji Neopan Acros 100 or Fuji Provia 100) to shoot my long exposures and it’s not as hard as it looks.
Here is a bonus long exposure using a Toyo 45A 4×5 camera with swing movement applied to blur the buildings a bit. Shot on Fuji Neopan Acros 100 of course.
On Wednesday night, I met up with good pal Barry Yanowitz in Gowanus for some night time shooting. He had his Rollei loaded with Fujichrome T64 color slide film (of which he gave me a roll and I can’t wait to try out) and I had my Hasselblad loaded with Fuji Neopan Acros 100 black and white film. It was nice to catch up with him and also to discover that the canal waters had receded to their normal levels after Hurricane Sandy’s rude visit. We each shot one roll of film during the evening.
The shots below were developed in Kodak Xtol Developer (stock solution) at 20C for 8 minutes. I’ll post a few more next week.
I’ve always loved the look of the old wooden folding field cameras. And of course, I love Eastman Kodak. Therefore it’s no surprise that one of these old 8×10 view cameras ended up on my doorstep one day (Thursday). Large format photography definitely suits the way I like to work and I enjoy the 4×5 format, but I have always wanted the flexibility to shoot 8×10 for projects. This Eastman View Camera No. 2D came up on Ebay and it looked like it had all the pieces I wanted – both front and rear extensions, a sliding tripod block, and a newer bellows. The lens looked shot (it’s a Wollensok Versor and totally shot) and I could tell that there was a knob missing, but the price was right.
I unpacked it last night and I was surprised that it feels lighter than my Toyo 45A was. The wood is in decent condition with many marks and imperfections, but the bellows slide along the rails nicely. I’ve never really cared how beat up a camera is as long as it does what I ask it to do. I’ve applied a coat of wood wax to sit overnight and it should condition the wood.
The missing knob, however, is a problem. It’s the knob that locks down the rear standard. On Thursday night, I kept racking out the bellows only to watch the rear standard slowly creep forward. A trip to the hardware store will get me a temporary fix until I can find a proper knob. The bellows are not original (the original bellows were red) and look to be in good shape.
Overall, and especially for a camera produced in Rochester, NY in 1935, I think it will be a good camera. I’ve got film holders and a new lens board coming. I’m also on the lookout for a 4×5 reducing back so I can shoot both 4×5 and 8×10 sheet film.
The bottom line is I could have purchased a MUCH more expensive, modern wooden folding camera or pay way less for this little piece of American history and spend the difference on film.
Test shots coming soon!
Last week I posted a 9/11 Tribute in Lights photograph taken on Fuji Neopan Acros 100 black and white film. Here are two shots from the same evening, one taken with the Olympus using Fuji Provia 100 slide film, and one taken with the Toyo 4×5 also using Fuji Provia 100 film.
The 35mm picture was a shorter exposure (only 60 seconds).
This was the same exposure ( 120 seconds) as the Neopan Acros 100 black and white film.
I much prefer the black and white image. In fact, I just had this black and white version scanned (605MB file!) to make prints.
I hadn’t planned on taking any pictures of the 9/11 Tribute in Light this year, but it was gorgeous last night and I did have my 4×5 film holders loaded. It’s always interesting to see how many people are crowded along the East River to get a view of the tribute lights come on at dusk. This year I got there at 6:45 and there were hundreds of people waiting. All of my normal shooting spots were already lousy with tripods, so I walked around looking for a nice vantage point, finally settling in by Jane’s Carousel. It’s a moving experience looking at those lights surrounded by the buildings of Lower Manhattan. This year it felt good to see World Trade Center One at its full height (minus the spire) just north of the Tribute in Lights.
I shot a few sheets of Fuji Neopan Acros 100 and a handful of Fuji Provia 100 transparencies while I was there, as well a dozen or so frames with the Olympus OM-1. I haven’t taken my color film to the lab yet, but I did wake up early this morning to develop the B&W shots.
This one is my favorite, because of the looping helicopter light trails in the sky.
9/11 Tribute in Light Long Exposure on Fuji Neopan Acros 100 4×5 Film Developed in Ilford DD-X
You can view a very large version of this in my Flickr Photostream.
This shot was a 2 minute exposure at f22 and developed in Ilford DD-X (1+4 dilution) at 20C for 11 minutes. There’s very little documentation for Fuji Neopan Acros 100 in sheet format, especially with DD-X so I’ve had to experiment a bit with times. From a recommendation on APUG, I initially tried it at 1+9 dilution and 22C for 9 minutes. The negatives were a little thin, so I did some very unscientific comparisons of 120 and sheet film times on the Massive Dev chart. I think for now, I’ll stick with this diltuon and time for Fuji Acros in 4×5 format.
I’ll upload some color pics in a few days.
Despite having all but forsaken using a 35mm SLR in favor of medium format and format, I recently took my Olympus OM-1 on a trip to Bushwick. I had my newish Nikon D700 with me and didn’t want to commit to all-digital for the trip, so I popped a roll of Kodak Ektar 100 into the OM-1. During my outing, I took a few shots of the same thing with the Olympus and the D700. I was astounded at the difference in the two cameras. The Olympus paired with Kodak Ektar rendered everything with a richness and texture that the Nikon D700 just smoothed over. The D700 shots were too cool-toned and the aging building facades looked smooth and slick rather than worn and beaten by time. I posted an example on Flickr of the same shot side by side with Ektar and digital and it’s beyond obvious which is better for this particular shot. Overall, film simply renders things like buildings, storefronts, and street art in a much more true-to-life manner. The D700 files are just too polished, too perfect. Lesson learned. The D700 is unmatched in shooting events and low light, while film is better for everything else.
Last week I had uploaded a few of my normal type shots to Flickr using the D700 despite thinking they looked a little flat. I thought it was just me being too used to the way a film shot looks. Then as I was showing Kate the comparison shot (linked to above) she was like, “Yeah, those D700 shots don’t look very good.” She didn’t think they were up to my usual standards and hoped that I wouldn’t be using the D700 for shooting my everyday stuff. What looked obvious to me was just obvious. Film simply looks better for the type of things I like to shoot.
Here are a handful of OM-1, Kodak Ektar shots from the trip.
So everyone likes sparklers right?
On our recent St. Michaels vacation, Kate and I teamed up for this admittedly kind of corny shot. This was after cocktails on the dock and I already had my 4×5 camera set up to capture the sunset. I used Fuji Provia 100 slide film and the meter reading told me the exposure should be one minute at an aperture of f11. The sparklers only stayed lit for 45 seconds so I had to cut the exposure a bit short. It worked perfectly though. Kate held her legs still and did an amazing job at keeping the repeatedly drawn hearts in a tight pattern. You can see a larger version of this picture at my Flickr account.
In the Flickr comments a few people were curious about the “not as successful outtake” of this shot. Here it is.
It was obviously much more difficult to try to repeat K-A-T-E so she just spelled it once and then added these little flourishes at the end as the sparklers fizzled out. I was laughing too hard to ask her to stand still.
Hope everyone has a good fourth. We are hoping to hit the beach tomorrow.
Haven’t shot a lot this week, so here are a few pictures from last week. It’s been so beautiful this Spring. I don’t know why, but every year I’m surprised when the trees start to bloom and then even more surprised to see leaves popping out.
I took these first four shots early in the morning on a walk to meet Kate after her long training run. At this time of the morning, the light is perfect. These were all shot with Hasselblad 501cm on Kodak Portra 400 film.
This was taken later in the day on the way to the Brooklyn Flea in Fort Greene. This is the Koadk Portra look that I always hope for…
Here are two of the four sheets of Kodak Portra 400 that I shot recently on my Toyo 45AII large format camera. I had received a box of Portra 400 for Christmas and was curious how it would handle long exposures. I normally like B&W for these types of shots, especially the foolproof Fuji Neopan Acros 100, but as I said curiosity got the best of me. I was also a little annoyed that the Kodak data sheet for 45 Portra read: “No filter correction or exposure compensation is required for PORTRA 400 Film for exposures from 1⁄10,000 second to 1 second. For critical applications with longer exposure times, make tests under your conditions.”
Super helpful, Kodak. Thanks! So you didn’t test the film for anything longer than 1 second? You would rather let the consumer make their own tests (which I agree to some extent makes sense)? It is discouraging that a box of 10 sheets of Kodak Portra 400 costs about $30 and each sheet is $3-6 to develop depending on which lab you use. Mine is only $3, so my testing consisted of loading two film holders with four sheets of film and blowing $24 in fifteen minutes.
Yes, I’m being a little hard on Kodak. However, Fuji and Ilford do a fantastic job of documenting the change needed in exposure (due to reciprocity failure) for times longer than 1 second. Kodak should do better.
Anyway, I shot four sheets from my usual test location (in Dumbo underneath the Manhattan Bridge looking at the Brooklyn Bridge and Lower Manhattan) for long exposures and didn’t see a bit of difference. The first shot was 8 seconds for f22, but I gave it 15 seconds as a starting point.
The second one was taken right after the first and I gave it 30 seconds. I couldn’t tell a difference between the two.
I repositioned my tripod slightly for the second film holder and repeated the meter reading. As it was getting darker, the reading called for 15 seconds. I exposed one sheet for 45 seconds and the other for 90 seconds just to see if it would matter. It didn’t, both negatives were pretty much the same.
Here’s the 45 second exposure at f22.
The bottom line is that Kodak Portra 400 handles long exposures nicely. I got great results between 15 seconds and 90 seconds. Some of that was obviously due to the rapidly changing light conditions, but as its been well documented, this film is VERY versatile and forgiving. I wouldn’t hesitate to use Kodak Portra 400 for exposures between 1 second and 90 seconds. Next time I would probably just give the shot double the time that the meter reading calls for. Please note, this was in no way a scientific method. I didn’t keep notes, but I recall the exposure times and which film holders were which times. For critical paid use, I guess I would do as Kodak suggests and “make tests under your conditions.”