New film stock to try out … Agfa APX 400

I was recently sent a lovely little package from a twitter friend Sandeep @Givemeabiscuit that contained a bunch of different films stocks.

He kindly sent me the films due to losing a bet that we made last year in regards to Liverpool FC ( who I support) finishing higher than Manchester UTD (who he supports) .

We both agreed to send each other a pile of film which ever one of us lost the bet, I won but to be honest I forgot all about it but Sandeep being the gentleman that he is reminded me and suffice to say he sent me a excellent pile of films some of which I have never shot before.

The 1st film that caught my eye was some Agfa APX 400 which is a film that I have not tried so I decided as the weather last weekend was total pants and my rugby match was cancelled due to a waterlogged pitch I though I would get wet anyway so loaded up a camera that I have had a while but never shot the Minolta Dynax 500si (more about this at the end of the blog) and went out up the mountain in the mist and rain to see how the film/camera performed.I tried to test the film/camera with a variety of settings and subjects from wide open closeups to stopped down wide shots all in aperture priority at iso 400 and developed the roll in Ilfotec HC 1+31 dilution for 8 minutes.

The camera performed really well I did switch to manual focus for some of the shots as it did struggle in the light a little but other than that it was great. The film itself was also a revelation with lovely contrast and excellent sharpness which really showed in some of the images where I stopped down to f8 and more.

The grain is pretty uniform and tight which helped in the large areas of mist in the pictures.

Overall I am very impressed with this film and will certainly look into buying some more in the future.As I said earlier in the post … more about the Minolta Dynax 500si …

I have been thinking about how to give back to the film community in some way.

I have given a few cameras/film away in the past but I was thinking about how to get others to join in the absolute joy that is “film photography” so as a start I am going to give this camera and AF35-70mm lens away along with some film to a newbie film shooter.

I will do a follow up blog post in the next few days with details about how I am going to do this as I am not really sure how to target newbie photographers.

Hopefully my fellow film togs can spread the word somehow and I can get the ball rolling soon.

Anyway thanks for looking ….

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All images are available as prints just drop me an email

I also have a film only blog over at  usingfilm.wordpress.com if you want a peek 🙂

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Garw Valley Mountain Walk with some Velvia 50 ….

After some friendly banter with a fellow twitter photographer about how slide film should not be cross processed and that it was almost a sin I decided to shoot a roll of Velvia 50 as the Gods intended and get it processed and scanned by AG Photographic and here are the results. They were shot using my Nikon F100 and Nikkor 24-85 VR … they are untouched scans that I got back from AG and I am pretty happy with the results, I still love to Xpro E6 but I have just bought a Tetenal E6 kit and have started processing my own so I am now almost a convert … ha ha I am pleased that the exposures were pretty spot on which I don’t worry about when I know that I am going to xpro the roll … I did notice the difference in colour when shooting with the sun behind me compared to in front, I could have warmed them up a bit in Lightroom but I thought I would just post as is….

 

Thanks for looking ….

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I also have a film only blog over at  usingfilm.wordpress.com if you want a peek 🙂

My 1st Nikkormat ….

I received a message the other week from a photographer friend saying someone that he knew was selling some film equipment and wondered if I was interested.

I contacted the gentleman and called around to see what he had for sale.

As I had just bought my 1st Leica the week before my camera fund was a little depleted but out of all the stuff he was selling I managed to afford this Nikkormat FTn.

As soon as I held the camera I loved it, especially the brassing from years of use.

The seller was a retired pro photographer and to be fair he took very good care of his equipment.The first problem that I encountered was the fact that I didn’t own a lens that were compatible with how the meter operated. All my lenses were too new, even though they all fit they didn’t have the aperture coupling thingy so I had no way of using the internal meter … or so I thought.

After some reaching out to my Twitter friends I was informed that I could use it in “Stop Down Metering Mode”  where you use the DOF preview button to stop down the lens to the aperture that you want then while holding it adjust the Shutter/Aperture to get the meter in the centre.

Then came the 2nd problem … to do this correctly on the FTn you need to push the lever on the camera that is supposed to attach to the coupler on the lens completely to the right when you mount the lens then it should remain there to give correct meter readings.

But when I did this and compared the camera reading to my lightmeter reading it was off quite a bit but after a bit of fiddling I realised that if I pushed the lever all the way to the right then pulled it back about 1cm then the readings matched … happy days 🙂

So I loaded it up with some ilford XP2 and went out to test the beast … It was a joy to use and handled great.

Here is a selection of the images that I got and managed to get every frame pretty much in the correct exposure ball park …

Thanks for looking ….

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I also have a film only blog over at  usingfilm.wordpress.com if you want a peek 🙂

Testing my Minolta SRT 101 with some Delta 400@800 ….

delta400_012Just before christmas a friend messaged me to say he had been given a couple of old camera’s and if I was interested I could have them, well I can never say no to free stuff so I said to pop them around.

To my surprise the the 2 camera’s were in excellent condition the 1st was a Ricoh Singlex TLS SLR with a Rikenon 50mm f2.8 which I have yet to put a roll of film through.

The next was a Minolta SRT 101 with a MC Rokkor-PF 55mm f1.7 both were in almost perfect condition.delta400_009The weather for the last 2 weeks has been very changeable so I decided to push a roll of ilford Delta 400 to 800 to give me a bit more to play with if the light was poor.

I shot this roll over a 2 week period but to be fair the light was pretty consistent every time I shot so the images look like they may have been shot  all on the same day.delta400_010To be honest I was quite pleased with the images even though they didn’t seem totally sharp overall but I put that down to pushing the film and mostly due to my focussing I think.

The camera didn’t have a split prism which I am used to so I may have been slightly out especially shooting at f4 and wider.delta400_022I have looked at various examples of this camera on eBay from time to time but never got around to picking one up so getting this almost perfect sample for free makes me feel very lucky …Cheers Steve 😉

Thanks for looking ….

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I also have a film only blog over at  usingfilm.wordpress.com if you want a peek 🙂

1st roll of Kodak Portra 400VC in 35mm format …

portra400vc_022A few weeks back I managed to get hold of quite a bit of expired Kodak film from MrCad here in the UK, most of it was in 120 format but I did also get a few rolls of Portra 400vc in 35mm to try.portra400vc_015-editI was a pretty nice day last weekend so I thought I would give a roll a go in the Nikon F100.

When I shot some of the 120 when I got it the sun was blazing here and the images really popped, I loved the colours so I was hoping for the same with the 35mm and to be fair the images that had really good light really shone.portra400vc_020
portra400vc_012-editI am so pleased that I bought loads of this film, after just shooting 3 rolls I am hooked.

All I need now is some sunny weather to do it justice, even though I was pleased with most of the images its the one’s in the best light that showed the best of the film.portra400vc_032 portra400vc_028-edit portra400vc_025Roll on the summer I say 🙂

Thanks for looking ….

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I also have a film only blog over at  usingfilm.wordpress.com if you want a peek 🙂

My 1st ever Photo workshop for my 50th Birthday…………….

D600A-3740AI turned 50 years of age 2 weeks ago and part of my present from my wife was a Photography Workshop run by Nigel Forster of Creative Photography Wales.

It was a Brecon Beacons Heritage & Landscape course,  As I have never been on a workshop before I didn’t really know what to expect but after meeting Nigel at his home I was put at ease from the off.D600A-3690AWe visited 4 locations during the day ……The Guardian at Six Bells, Blaenavon Ironworks, Big Pit and lastly we walked up to Llangattock Escarpment giving stunning views over the beautiful welsh landscape.D600A-3847AThe Workshop ran from 9:30 til 7:30 and was a great day at locations that I have never visited before.

All images were shot on my Nikon D600 with the 24-85mm and processed in Lightroom.

Some links related to this workshop

http://www.blaenau-gwent.gov.uk/leisure/14674.asp

http://www.countryfile.com/days-out/llangattock-escarpment-brecon-beacons

http://www.creativephotographywales.com/index.php

Thanks for looking…. click on an image to view larger

Bridgend Show with my Fuji X-Pro & 35mm f1.4………

Fuji Xpro1-1155-Edit-EditPopped along to the Bridgend Show on Sunday with just the X-Pro 1 and 35mm f1.4 with the intention to shoot as much as I could as near wide open as I could but it was rather bright and sunny so managed f2.0 -f4.0 and the camera and lens performed superbly.

All images shot Raw and processed in Adobe Lightroom 5 using the Adobe Fuji camera profiles, quite pleased with the colours but still not as sharp as with Capture One Pro but getting there.

Click on an image to view larger …….

Thanks for looking 🙂

Another roll of colour film for a change ……..

Nikon-FM2-Kodak-200-exp005The weather here has been terrible over the last few weeks and getting out with the camera has been difficult.

I loaded my Nikon FM2n with some expired Kodak Colorplus 200 over 3 weeks ago and only managed to finish it yesterday.

Nikon-FM2-Kodak-200-exp007-EditThe colours that this film produced were very pleasing when scanned and complimented the subject matter, nicely subdued.

Nikon-FM2-Kodak-200-exp010I must say that the FM2n is by far my favorite camera to use especially with the 50mm 1.8 its a quality piece of kit.

Nikon-FM2-Kodak-200-exp004-Edit Nikon-FM2-Kodak-200-exp003-Edit Nikon-FM2-Kodak-200-exp013-EditI am looking to get a Nikkor 35mm f2.8 Ai which in combination with the FM2n would be my everyday film camera.Nikon-FM2-Kodak-200-exp020-Edit Nikon-FM2-Kodak-200-exp017Nikon-FM2-Kodak-200-exp036-Edit Nikon-FM2-Kodak-200-exp035-Edit Nikon-FM2-Kodak-200-exp029 Nikon-FM2-Kodak-200-exp027Thanks for looking

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My Pentax K1000 out & about in the Garw ………….

Pentax k1000-Delta400_023-EditFollowing on from my last blog where I shot my Canon AV1 this is the 2nd camera I picked up at the same time from my local charity shop.

A lot of people say that the k1000 is what they 1st started their photography journey, I myself until now have never used one I began with an Olympus OM1.Pentax k1000-Delta400_034-EditThe first thing that I noticed was the focussing screen was not a split prism like all my other film SLR’s so initially I found foccussing a little hard but got used to it as long as I took my time.Pentax k1000-Delta400_016-EditIt’s quite a heavy camera and slightly larger than most of the others I have but still felt nice in my hands, simple to use with the exposure needle in the viewfinder.Pentax k1000-Delta400_036It was quite a miserable day so I shot some ilford Delta 400@800 and the results were fine, the camera came with the Pentax 50mm f2.0 which performed great I was going to put on my 50mm f1.7 but to be honest I don’t shoot many frames wide open on film so I stuck with what came with the camera.Pentax k1000-Delta400_021-EditAll in all the camera was very enjoyable to use and I can see why it was the goto camera for teaching students, basic but a great tool for learning (excellent picture quality too).Pentax k1000-Delta400_017-EditPentax k1000-Delta400_015-Edit Pentax k1000-Delta400_012Thanks for looking….. more film stuff on my other blog

http://usingfilm.wordpress.com

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A Schoolboy Error……..

Tim Dobbs Photography-0325I went out this morning with my Bronica SQ-Ai loaded with a roll of Fuji Velvia and proceeded to trek up to the site of the old Ocean Colliery here in Blaengarw, South Wales.

The light was great and so was the landscape and cloud formations and I set to work shooting my 12 frames of 6×6…. or so I thought.

Tim Dobbs Photography-0327While out I also brought my little Fuji x10 and after each shot I also took a few frames digitally just as some sort of reference to go with my notes as I have never shot 120 slide film before.

Tim Dobbs Photography-0308Lucky I did as when I got home I realised that the multi exposure lever was on and the 11 frames taken was really just 1…….. Gutted!!

Its a good job that film photography is just my personal pastime and not professional …

At least the results from the little Fuji were great, below is both the colour and B&W version of my audience this morning.

Tim Dobbs Photography-0321 Tim Dobbs Photography-I am so glad I take the Fuji everywhere as this morning would have been a total waste but at least I will check my frame counter next time just in case the damn lever is down again.

Tim Dobbs Photography-0313 Tim Dobbs Photography-0332Thanks for looking….

I also have another blog just featuring my film photography if anyone is interested

http://usingfilm.wordpress.com/