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Nightski Got a Film Camera!
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Aug 4, 2015 17:33:29   #
Nightski
 
SharpShooter wrote:
E

I think its time to make a serious response. Yes, Gessman makes some good observations. I think Gessman was trying to be nice but was holding back!! :lol:
The problem today, I feel, is that most that want to call themselves film shooter are not actually film shooters. They are recording on film but then go full digital after someone else processes and scans their film.
I guess that will give most the mostalgic fix without actually doing any work or paying any dues.
Normally in film printing(silver), one can use a lot of the filtering mentiond by Gessman in printing at the enlarger, especially the better ones with the color heads or it has to be done manually with a seperate set of yellow/magenta filters and lots of trial and error until one gets very proficient at it.
I personally don't see any difference between shooting film and shooting digi once you take the darkroom out of it. The recording of the scene is exactly the same. Turn off the screen on your dslr and pretent you recieved a CD in the mail when you download to the computer.
Film(B&W) is NOT about how you record the image, but about the knowledge of how to see a scene then shoot it, and print a good final contrasty print. B&W is about black and about white and producing the proper contrast between them to make the image pop!
Just like photography today, it depended on the skill/artistic ability of the photographer to produce a good composition with the correct set of attribute to come out correct in the final print.

Too many of these discussions wind up in exactly the same place as all the Digi discussions do, about the easy parts of photography, the technical aspects of film and gear and nothing to do with shooting film itself.
But I guess that in reality, once we convert film to a digi file we are in actuality at the same exact place and the only thing that counts are your PS skills and use of PS filters to try and replicate what film and a good film shooter did without actually having those skills. If we are using digi files, why are we trying to replicate since are really no longer dealing with film and the special set of skills and look that went with it?!

I'm not saying that Nightski shouldn't or won't have fun with her new film camera, as all learning experiences are good for us but we need to keep in perspective what our end goals are and what and how we are trying to achieve them.
The biggest potential of shooting film today is its potential to very inexpensively creat really large files to would otherwise be cost prohibive with digi.
I'm looking forward to Nightskis shots. I know they will be good because her skills as a photographer have gotten really good.
Nobody was a film monster then a flop at digi, it's really all exactly the same from that perspective. It's still all about the composition. You can either shoot or you can't, no matter what the medium!!! ;-)
SS
E br br I think its time to make a serious respon... (show quote)


So what you are saying, SS, is that I won't really see much of a difference in my images unless I do my own developing?

What about the grain? Does anyone think that grain has a better look to it than noise does? I wonder what the people who have shot film for many years think about the grain you can add in many editing programs .. the same .. or not? That's just one aspect that I wish to explore.

I am learning quite a bit from starting this thread. I am still very enthusiastic about pursuing this, though I can see that I have a few more obstacles in my way than I thought. Not a problem! Obstacles are what makes it fun. :-)

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Aug 4, 2015 17:43:56   #
Nightski
 
Lynn L wrote:
Hi Sandra. I'm late to the party, but here goes. Question #1; Usually, photo finishers will scan negatives at low resolution. So yes, you'll get better quality if you scan your own negs at about 600dpi. I suppose you could call your negs your raw files, but really there is no raw file in film. In a digital world you have to scan your negs and that is really your raw file. You just have your negs. Question #2. Is light metering the same. Yes. The difference is that with film you MUST give enough exposure for the shadow details you want; whereas in digital it's the highlights that you must expose for. In film you have a lot of exposure latitude in the highlights. In digital, as you know, if you overexpose the highlights they blow out. Shooting digital photos is like shooting slide film. I'd advise you take you hand held meter and take an incident reading and set the recommended exposure on both your film camera and your digital camera. I think you'll find the final results quite similar. Question #3. Yes, for all practical purposes, 35mm is the same as full frame. Question 4. Do you get more with developing your own film. For folks who get a kick out of darkroom work, developing their own negative film is fine. In the real world, if you have your film developed by a good pro lab, they will do a consistently better job than you will on you own. The only place I would say you MUST develop your own film would be in B&W, if you were playing with the zone system. Question 5. Do I know a good processing lab? Not any more. My only advice is go with the Pro's. I wouldn't go to Walgreens or any big box type of photo finishing. If your lab doesn't properly replenish their solutions, don't maintain perfect temperature control, or don't properly dry your negatives, you've go a big problem. Question 6. CD pic don't look very good. See answer to number 1 question. Question 7. Where's my shooting data? It's in the notebook you carry to write all that stuff down while you're shooting. Welcome to the world of film! One last comment. I saw a flower image you posted with the petals sharp & the center out of focus. The camera just did it's range finding thing on the wrong area. If anything in an image is sharp and it's not what you wanted sharp, it's a focusing problem. If nothing in an image is sharp, it's a camera movement problem. One other thing; if there is anything I can really help you with in the film world, just PM me and I'll take 30 seconds and tell everything I still remember about film. After developing and printing thousands of rolls of film, I've had all the film fun by body can stand. I'm going to grab my OLY and my A7r ii, in a few days, and I'm going to shoot nothing but digital till death do I part!
Hi Sandra. I'm late to the party, but here goes. Q... (show quote)


Thank you, Lynn. Your answer is very simple and it has given me some things to think about.

The difficulties of developing film are going to be a challenge when I get there, but I think your suggestion to use a quality lab will work for me until I decide I am ready to develop a roll myself.

I really need to read my manual to figure out how to get in out of that mode where it chooses my focal point. I think that is what happened on that flower.

That is a very interesting comment about exposure. It's something I can experiment with using my DSLR and my SLR side by side.

I will pm you if I have anything specific I want to know. Thank you.

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Aug 4, 2015 17:51:14   #
Nightski
 
Karl Shuffler wrote:
Film. Regardless where film is processed, negatives will result as to be return to you regardless of prints or cd is given. If not, this would be put to the question of their where abouts. During the infancy of digital photography, I did my own digital transfer by means using a film scanner. Cameras started with sensor less than 6Mp,, so by scanning, it produced better than any digital camera could possibly produce quality wise as well as file size. By scanning, file size exceeded 107 Mp. The only problem would be film granulation. With the advancement with digital cameras this problem is resolved. Early days with digital was enlargement of pixels. A comfortably scanner ran about $2000.00. Minolta, Nikon, and Canon made good film scanners. Near the end of film cameras production, some retained your camera settings; however you had to keep up with what roll the information pertain to. With color film, exposure and sharpness is not so forgiving. Best sharpness is by: use of tripod, down on apreture, low ISO. I prefered ISO of 25. Reala and Provia are my favorites. From time to time I would have Walmart developed my film only and scan them myself. Experimental means will be your best teacher. One experiment for me was taking two shots, scan, with PS blend the two. For learning purposes I leave an example. This was taken with 300/4 zeiss (c/y), Contax RTS III. Mexico City.
Film. Regardless where film is processed, negative... (show quote)


So the results of the experiment you posted is equivelent to an HDR photo? You did it in photoshop? I always thought negatives were physically put together to create a printed image with multiple exposures.

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Aug 4, 2015 17:53:59   #
Darkroom317
 
Nightski wrote:
So the results of the experiment you posted is equivelent to an HDR photo? You did it in photoshop? I always thought negatives were physically put together to create a printed image with multiple exposures.


They can be in the darkroom but once scanned they are digital files just like images from a digital camera.

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Aug 4, 2015 17:57:48   #
Peterff
 
Nightski wrote:
So what you are saying, SS, is that I won't really see much of a difference in my images unless I do my own developing?

What about the grain? Does anyone think that grain has a better look to it than noise does? I wonder what the people who have shot film for many years think about the grain you can add in many editing programs .. the same .. or not? That's just one aspect that I wish to explore.

I am learning quite a bit from starting this thread. I am still very enthusiastic about pursuing this, though I can see that I have a few more obstacles in my way than I thought. Not a problem! Obstacles are what makes it fun. :-)
So what you are saying, SS, is that I won't really... (show quote)


I think it is purely an aesthetic thing. I'd rather have grain than noise, even though the idea that grain feels organic is somewhat misplaced.

I have an old paperback that I have owned for years, which is falling apart sadly, but intact copies are not cheap these days. It is called
Goodbye Baby & Amen : A Saraband for the Sixties: Bailey, David & Evans, Peter.

It has a wonderful collection of photos and portraits from the Swinging Sixties in London, and is a great book for looking at grainy pictures of sixties celebrities. David Bailey was a bit like the Annie Leibovitz of the day. It tends to sell for silly money unfortunately if in decent condition....

http://www.maharam.com/stories/king_goodbye-baby-amen-a-saraband-for-the-sixties

Personally, I think you will see a difference if film is developed well. It is not hard to do B&W developing at home with a simple developing tank. Printing takes more effort and investment. Unless you try, you will not know....

Do see if anyone near you has access to a darkroom so you can experience the process. It is quite a visceral experience seeing your images slowly appear in front of you in the developing trays...

I would also suggest you do check out the Ilford processing lab I sent a link to. Ilford has long been viewed as one of the leaders in B&W film, and their options to provide you with negatives and high resolution scans in TIFF format should get you top notch results.

Enjoy!

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Aug 4, 2015 18:19:28   #
selmslie (a regular here)
 
Nightski wrote:
... What about the grain? Does anyone think that grain has a better look to it than noise does? ...

Grain is very different from noise. You are more likely to see it in lighter, smooth toned areas in the positive image (the denser portions of the negative). It can be pleasant and atmospheric and it can give the impression of greater sharpness but not everyone likes it. By the same token, not everyone likes the smooth, creamy and grainless tones of a digital image.

Noise occurs in the dark parts of a digital image where the signal to noise ratio in the raw file is low. You may also find it in scanned images. It is not attractive, can be distracting but you may have to pixel peep to see it.

There are also artifacts from over-sharpening and over-processing that look like grain or noise in areas that are not so dark. This is not noise that came from the raw image but noise that is put there by overly aggressive processing.

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Aug 4, 2015 18:31:54   #
blackest (a regular here)
 
Nightski wrote:
Thank you for taking the time to share all of this valuable information with me. I am going to print it out. There is a ton of valuable advice here. Thanks so much!

The caffenol thing intrigues me!


http://www.facebook.com/groups/caffenol/

The posts on there may help feed your intrigue.
Not so sure about drinking the developer, the coffee that is, not the mix, as generally speaking the worst coffee makes the best developer. it's mixed with washing soda and i think citric acid or vitamin C (these are not the same thing) the last is often available in health food stores. you still need a fixer which you will need to get from a photographic supply shop.

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Aug 4, 2015 19:36:24   #
selmslie (a regular here)
 
Nightski wrote:
... I am learning quite a bit from starting this thread. I am still very enthusiastic about pursuing this, though I can see that I have a few more obstacles in my way than I thought. Not a problem! Obstacles are what makes it fun. :-)

I hope that every one can enjoy the learning and experimenting process.

I also hope that I have not given the impression that I feel that film is inherently superior to digital. It is not - just a different approach with different advantages and different pitfalls.

By the time you post an image on the internet it might be difficult to tell the difference - where the image originated. But you might see the difference in the printed image.

Your sense of accomplishment will depend on how much intellectual and creative effort you put into either process.

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Aug 4, 2015 19:55:58   #
CHG_CANON (a regular here)
 
I missed a request for processing resources. There's a spreadsheet developed back in 2013 as an attempt to answer. It may be out of date, but a useful place to start.

http://www.uglyhedgehog.com/t-149625-1.html

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Aug 4, 2015 20:02:41   #
mr. u. n. owen
 
For all ditigal fans out there why do most photo software ,in b&w conversions allow you to chose which film you want it to look like, Fuji, Ilford,ect. and grain to match the iso.What's that all about?

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Aug 4, 2015 20:05:01   #
lighthouse
 
mr. u. n. owen wrote:
For all ditigal fans out there why do most photo software ,in b&w conversions allow you to chose which film you want it to look like, Fuji, Ilford,ect. and grain to match the iso.What's that all about?


To allow people to recreate a look that they have grown to love, without having to fiddle with the sliders too much, to be able to press a button and have their favourite or desired look recreated.

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Aug 4, 2015 20:10:49   #
Karl Shuffler
 
One can have their photo to have the appearance of the designated film as ISO increases so does grainulation. Different film have different characteristics with grain, contrasting, and other noticeable factors. Try the different films, iso; and you too will see the differences. Experiment, experiment, experiment!

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Aug 4, 2015 20:47:02   #
Michael Hartley
 
Thanks for all the info.

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Aug 4, 2015 21:03:26   #
Bobspez (a regular here)
 
Agreed. Not the same at all. A 600dpi scan of a 120 film transparency results in a 240MB digital file. After removing dust particles with the Photohop Healing Brush tool and saving as jpeg, it's still an 80MB file. If you have your film developed and just get prints and/or a CD, the files on CD will be somewhere around 4MB to 6MB depending on how much you pay. Those CD's leave out more than 90% of the resolution of your film image. In many cases, the negatives are not even returned.
Bob
selmslie wrote:
You make a good point but there are some fundamental differences.

With film, the "raw" image resides in a physical object - the negative or transparency. You can always scan it with newer technology and, as long as you take care of it, it remains archival - more-so than a digital raw file that depends on the survival of a proprietary raw format. The Library of Congress will not accept a digital file for archival purposes. Theywill accept a 4x5 B&W negative - I know because I have provided them.

The physical size of a negative is limited only by your willingness to deal with a larger camera - 120, 4x5, 5x7, 8x10 and even larger. Resolution and quality (but not ease of use) increase with format size.

There is a physical limit to the resolution and detail that you can record in a 24x36 format - the lens itself. Although you might be able to obtain a lens with better resolution for full format in the future, it will be expensive - more than you might be willing to spend and much more than you would spend if you simply moved up to medium and large format.

Finally, there is the pesky Bayer array between the sensor and the subject. It's the first obstacle to resolution and there is only one camera so far, the Leica Monochrom, that does without it.

PS: I forgot to mention the issue of the anti-aliasing filter. Film does not need it since the film grains are randomly distributed in the emulsion.
You make a good point but there are some fundament... (show quote)

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Aug 4, 2015 21:07:47   #
Bobspez (a regular here)
 
They emulate looks, but they really don't look exactly the same. If you compare the scanned film image and the look alike dslr image side by side, they are different.
mr. u. n. owen wrote:
For all ditigal fans out there why do most photo software ,in b&w conversions allow you to chose which film you want it to look like, Fuji, Ilford,ect. and grain to match the iso.What's that all about?

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