A Month with my Leica …

I have been thinking about and then putting off buying a Leica M for an absolute age.

I don’t really know what the actual reason for putting it off was to be fair … everytime I saw one I liked and put it into my online basket something stopped me pressing the checkout button.

Well last month I bit the bullet and got hold of an M2 which was made the same year of my birth which made it that little bit extra special.

I got it without a lens from Red Dot Cameras but purchased an adapter for my Jupiter 8 50mm f2 as a stop gap until I decide which lens I am going to get.

Here follows 4 galleries featuring a selection of images shot on 4 different film stock all processed and scanned by myself.

The Jupiter 8 really impressed me with the colour rendering and sharpness/bokeh … God only knows how excited I will be when I get around to upgrading this little beauty.

Click on an image to view larger ……..

  1. Kodak Ektar

    2. Ilford XP2

    3. Agfa Vista 200

    4. Kodak Tmax 400

    Overall my 1st month with my 1st Leica has not disappointed in the least … this little camera oozes class and charisma it is such a pleasure to use.

    I now know why photographers heap praise on the Leica M even a 50+ year old model works like a dream and it has to be said .. this is the best camera I have ever shot with … I don’t mean in techy imagey sort of way but as something that makes you feel happy everytime that you use it

    God I even like just looking at it … ha haThanks for looking ….

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

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 ….

Click on an image to view larger

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

April’s Tmax-Party entries in one place ….

This months @TMAX_party entries were shot using my lovely new Leica M2 with a Jupiter 8 50mm f2 on Tmax 400.

They were shot in 2 locations 1st at Porthcawl beach and finished off at home in the Garw Valley. To be honest Tmax is not my favorite film but I have to admit that the tones that it gives when using this camera/lens combination are lovely, its hard to tell looking here but when I look at the full res scans they are very pleasing. I will be visiting the darkroom with a couple of the beach shots to see how they print.

 

Thanks for looking ….

Click on an image to view larger

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 ….

Click on an image to view larger

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

Shooting Ilford HP5+ at 1600 iso……..

img020-Edit-EditMy favourite B&W film is ilford HP5 and I rarely shoot any thing else when it comes to B&W.

I love the contrast and grain it produces and depending on which developer I process with I can get plenty of looks from one film stock.

img022-EditI have been reading quite a few blog posts and watching some youtube videos where various other photographers recommend shooting HP5 at 1600 iso as it don’t seem to loose any sharpness and the increase in contrast/grain doesn’t impact on the image.

I like grain and contrast so I was not all that bothered if they increased but as a test I was interested in how sharp the images were, so I shot a roll with my Nikon F100 and 50mm f1.4 which is a very sharp lens and processed it using ilfotec HC 1+15.

The results were great, the sharpness was impressive and the grain didn’t impair the look at all.

Rating HP5 at 1600 may become my standard from now on as it gives me extra versatility to be able to shoot in more lighting situations while keeping the look I like from using this film stock.

Thanks for looking

Click on an image to view larger……

You can find more lovely film stuff on my film only blog at ……..

https://usingfilm.wordpress.com/

Zorki 4k re-visited …….

Zorki_HP5021-EditI have had my Zorki 4k and Jupiter 8 50mm f2 for ages but I have only put 2 rolls of film through it.

I don’t know why I have not used this camera more as it handles great and the results from the the 1st 2 rolls were also very pleasing.Zorki_HP5022As with my first attempts, getting the framing correct is still a bit hit or miss especially if trying to frame pretty tight.Zorki_HP5016So I have to leave plenty of space just to make sure I get the shot but thats not really a huge problem.Zorki_HP5014HP5 shoots great with the Jupiter 8 giving quite smooth out of focus areas while still getting great contrast which is what I like about HP5.Zorki_HP5010I am going to try to shoot this camera much more from now on and I have been looking on eBay for a nice lens hood as the lens is prone to quite a bit of flare.Zorki_HP5007Zorki_HP5008 Zorki_HP5011 Zorki_HP5020-EditZorki_HP5018Thanks for looking

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1st roll of Ilford PanF 50 ………

T90_PanF-004-EditI have had a roll of ilford panf 50 in my fridge for a few months now and every time I go to get a roll of film I see it sitting there by itself and I never seem to give it a go that is until about 2 weeks ago.

T90_PanF-013It was quite a bright morning so I decided to load up the Canon T90 – 28mm f2.8 and headed up the mountain.

As I was climbing the clouds were building and by the time I reached the top and began walking across towards the Memorial flag here in the Garw valley the darker it got….. not very good when you have a 50 iso film in your camera.

T90_PanF-020Nevertheless I managed to keep shooting albeit mainly at f4 – 5.6 and pretty slow shutter speeds.T90_PanF-034I processed the film in ilford Ilfotec HC and hung up to dry wondering if I managed to get many shots without blurring.T90_PanF-010And out of 36 frames I managed to get quite a few very sharp almost grainless images, I did slightly bump up the contrast on these scans in Lightroom and apart from cloning out a few dust spots these were pretty much straight scans.T90_PanF-008I am not sure when I would ever use this film as I prefer the contrast and grain that I get with my Favourite film HP5+ but the results were pretty nice, I may print some of the negatives in the darkroom just to see what they are like.T90_PanF-011T90_PanF-030Thanks for looking ….

click on an image to view larger ……

Found my new Favorite Film Compact 35mm Camera……..

IMG_2416I have over the last 12 months been buying cheap film cameras from various places like ebay and charity shops etc hoping to come across a camera that may be comparable to my various SLR’s  image quality.

I know that its not really the camera but lens that gives the quality so I searched the web for some information on compact cameras and found a lot of recommendations for the Nikon TW20.

I found a couple on ebay ranging in price from 99 pence to £50 so I bid on one and managed to get it for £8 inc postage……… Bargain 🙂

Nikon-TW20_img001-EditIt arrived quite quickly but to my complete annoyance didn’t have a battery and as it used a type that I have not got in any of my other cameras I had to wait a few more days to test the supposed image quality 😦

nikonTW20_img011As soon as the battery arrived I immediately rushed out with a roll of Kodak T-MAX 400 and shot away on a nice mountain walk up here in the lovely Garw Valley.

nikonTW20_img028The results from this cheap and rather ugly little camera were totally amazing, the sharpness was stunning.

I am so pleased with this purchase I cannot recommend this camera more highly, its not the most compact of things in fact its quite large for a so called compact but the images this produces really makes you forget what the camera looks like.

I would have quite happily paid £50 for this beauty and its going to be in my camera bag every time I go out.nikonTW20_img017 Nikon-TW20_img018 Nikon-TW20_img014

click on an image to view larger………

Thanks for looking 🙂

My 99pence camera………

99pence I hear you say……well actually it was £5.99 because the postage was £5 but what a cracking bargain it is.

I am now getting seriously hooked on ebay and charity shops for old retro cameras I have just won another as I type this blog post up… A Yashica Minister-D an almost mint rangefinder.

Anyway, this little camera blew me away when I opened the parcel on the weekend it was an excellent, solid piece of german engineering (well metal not plastic…lol) only problem was I did not have any batteries to try it out so had to wait till yesterday to get them.

Luckily the sun was still out when I got home from work and I quickly loaded the batteries and a roll of cheapo Kodak Colorplus (just incase the camera was a dud) and rushed out to snap a few photos.

It took a bit of guess work with guessing the focus distance but I was shooting at f8 mainly so I was not too fussy.

I was really pleased with the photos, sharp and contrasty and the huge viewfinder was a pleasure to use, I am going to be using this little beauty a lot and would recommend anyone interested in film photography to check out eBay as there are a few about.

All these shots are straight scans un edited even for dust and hairs……lol

I love getting new camera’s especially when they are FREE………….

A few months ago a photographer friend who knew I was getting back into film photography sent me a message to say he has a Canon A1 he has never used and I could have it if I wanted it. Obviously I said YES! PLEASE! but we never got around to meeting up until last week.

After a little clean up and a visit to Camarthen Cameras   http://www.carmarthencameras.co.uk/   to get a lens, a Canon FD 35mm for a princely sum of £30 I loaded it up with some expired Agfa Vista 400 and went off to Porthcawl to try it out..

The variation in the colours of the film gave the photos a vintage sort of feel but as you can see here the camera and lens performed excellently and for a total outlay of £30 I couldn’t go wrong.

I would like to Thank Gareth for his generosity and even though I really like this camera (my 1st Canon) I will not be turning to the dark-side just yet as I am too heavily  invested in my Nikon equipment.