Having fun with the Hassleblad and Kodak Tri-X 100 film.
I’ve been to the Venice Boardwalk for years. And this camper has always been there. Although its colors are muted, the message does ring out.
What I love about shooting with film is the grain. There is magic in shooting with film, but part of that magic is the film grain and how it formulates itself within the image. I have two examples of two types of film.
With this snap I used Fuji Neopan 1600 with my Contax G2 and 45mm f/2.8 Zeiss lens. The grain was so beautiful as if painted on the image. To me it was very musical. I really miss Fuji Neopan 1600 film. If you come across this film, use it. You won’t be disappointed.
I should call it Hasselblast! It is fun shooting with a medium format, manual focus, waist level finder film camera. It’s even more challenging using a hand-held exposure meter because with a Hasselblad 500C/M there is no built-in metering. I used Kodak Tri-X 320 film with an 80mm f/2.8 Carl Zeiss lens.
What better place to take snaps with an all manual camera than the Venice Skateboard Park.
Some serious acrobatics on my part to meter, focus, shoot, wind and ready for the next shot.
Overall, it was a great experience for me.
After the last shot of the roll, it would be a couple of days before I head back to the lab and see the results. I highly recommend shooting with film.
I was in downtown Los Angeles visiting some of my favorite photo sites. The 2nd Street underpass is a uniquely designed tunnel built in 1924. The ornate side of the tunnel is on Figueroa Street and ends on Hill Street as the length runs under Bunker Hill.
I shot the above image with my Fujifilm X100 digital camera. Where the image below I shot using my Contax G2 35mm rangefinder with 45mm f/2.8 Carl Zeiss lens using Fuji Acros 400 ISO B/W film.
I do own a couple of digital cameras. But film is still the elixir that makes photography fun, exciting and unpredictable. I’m not saying shooting with film will make your images magical. With film you have to work a little harder, plan a bit more, choose your opportunity, and anticipate the moment to release the shutter.
This image I took with my trusty Olympus OM-2n with a 200mm f/4.0 lens using Fujifilm Acros 1600 ISO B/W Film. How warm, how pleasingly detailed it looks to me. For me, this is magic.
If you are shooting with film, keep at it. Don’t worry. Digital snappers will catch up.
When I started using 35mm film cameras it amazed me the selections of film to choose from. There was Kodak, Fuji, AGFA, Ilford, Rollei, Arista, Fomopan and others. Eventually I figured out which type of film and sensitivity would give me the results I wanted. In this instance I was shooting with Fujichrome Provia 400X. After playing around with my OM-2n and transparency film I’d set my meter to 1/2 stop under exposure to get the results that for me was about richness in color and deeper contrast.
Once I got a handle of my camera and film it was time to head out with the resulting beauty of transparency film.
I took a walk on this foggy night on Melrose Ave with my Contax G2 rangefinder film camera with a 45mm f/2 lens using my favorite film Fuji Acros 1600.
It’s a shame Acros 1600 is no longer in production. It is a versatile film with a sweet grain.
Shooting with film is fun and forgiving especially with a simple manual focus SLR. You’d have to wait to see what develops (no pun intended). But that’s okay because when seeing your prints for the first time, a new world opens up.
Suddenly those frames come alive with imagined possibilities which helps you strive to become a better photographer.
Soon your compositions turn into marvelous stories that can be shared for a very long time.
I’m no expert of film, but I know what I like. Black & White images have a visually immense impact for me. There are things that catch your eye quickly, and then, there are things in the shadows.
I think it’s a forgiving medium to start out with when first shooting with film. It certainly is impressive when it turns out the way you saw it and equally so when you print it.
For me Black & White film gives you more freedom to capture the things that appeals to your eye. There is no distraction that color film inadvertently has, having to think twice before composing a shot.
It’s either there, or not with Black & White film and not a moment wasted pressing the shutter. Decisions become instantaneous and soon those images translate easily and profoundly.
However, do dress appropriately.
I believe shooting film is the purist form of photographic artistry. To me film is most forgiving to amateurs, and a strong ally to professionals.
Not to take away from the current technology of digital cameras. But for people who love to take pictures, try shooting with film a couple of times. ..before the media becomes extinct.
It’s a marvel to see what’s been captured on film whether intentional or not. Simply because you have a moment to pause during the process and to see the things you might have overlooked.
And maybe find yourself looking at things differently as you head out for your next photo adventure.
I took this from inside the Bonaventure Hotel in downtown Los Angeles. From the main lobby looking up you can see the towering elevator columns. I used a Nikon F2 with Kodak Gold color film–I had used up all my Fuji Pro color doing my walkabout before setting foot inside. I am not a fan of Kodak Gold. But I was in a pinch, so what can I do but keep snapping.
I took this snap outside the Brewery with my trusty OM-2n using Fuji Provia 400 transparency film. It was dark that night, friggin spooky in that part of downtown LA. I love shooting with film. If you haven’t shot with film before, I recommend you try it.
I’ve decided to go through boxes of film negatives and slides to pick out the best for prints. I shot these two while walking about the downtown area of Los Angeles. I used two cameras, a Contax G2 with a Carl Zeiss Planar 45mm f/2 lens, and my trusty OM-2n with a Zuiko 200mm f/4 lens. With the OM-2n I used Fuji Acros 1600 B/W film and with the Contax I used Kodak Portra 400 color.
It was raining outside that day and so I decided to have a little fun. I used a Nikon F2 w/ Nikkor 28mm f/2.8 AI lens and Ilford XP2 400 taking snap of my Olympus E-500 taking a snap of my guitars at home. BTW Ilford XP2 film uses C41 process, and with rich contrast and fine grain is actually nice for doing head shots.
A delightful juxtaposition caught with my Nikon F4 with 28~200 f/3.5D lens using Fuji Provia 400 transparency film. I normally use center weighted metering, but instead I switched on Matrix metering using the Program mode on the Nikon. It was the last shot of the roll and thought nothing of it. That is until I came home from the lab with my slides. I love those little surprises.
I used to live across the street from this house of the spooky black door. It had an ivy covered wall that was high with a wrought iron gated driveway. A very private residence that once housed members of MTV’s The Hills (the camera crews were nice people). One night on Halloween I stepped out with a Nikon F2 and 50mm f/1.8 lens with a roll of Ilford Delta 3200 and my first snap that night was this door.