The astonishing REALISM of slow speed ISO films

Discussion in 'Cameras and Photography' started by Karl vd Berg, Dec 17, 2013.

  1. Brian

    Brian An Old Geezer

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    Until it was withdrawn, I used Techpan and iso between 5 and 25 depending on the subject and lighting conditions. Had multiple loads for my Bronica ETRs. I could develop it as a negative or b&w slide. Nothing like a mf slide.

    For color, almost exclusively shot only slides, Fujichrome 100. The Kodachrome 64 was nothing like the original 25 that established Kodachrome's reputation especially for skin tones.

    WNED this week had a show, The Death of Analog, featuring the author of the book who documented the destruction of the Kodak film facilities around the world. He feels there are fewer photographers today than at film's peak while almost everyone is a picture taker. He also foresees the loss of intergenerational history as so few prints are going into albums and electronic media such as hard drives, flash drives are not suitable substitutes or, ever cds, dvds, etc.

    I wish someone would make an all manual digital camera, not auto functions. It could be useful for teaching and those wanting total manual control only. The first thing I do when picking up my dslr is switch ever off so there is total manual control. Sdly, there is no DoF scale on lenses so I have a app to determine it but, it really slows the process even more.

    I have sidelined my Bronica, too heavy at this point and pulled out my Rolleiflex. Will get the shutter serviced and am switching to it.
     
  2. Bogframe

    Bogframe www.bogframe.com

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    While not permanent, Gold CDs and DVDs are rated to last for 100 years. I'm in year two of a projected six year project of digitizing 100 years of family photos. I have everything from silver nitrate negatives to gelatine prints to tintypes with everything inbetween. The upsides of digitizing analog photos are many. First and foremost, it creates a backup so that if, G-d forbid, your originals are destroyed by fire, flood or any other diaster, you have a way to reproduce them. DVDs are also far less bulky than analog photos, so they're more easily shared.
     
  3. Wigwam Jones

    Wigwam Jones Caesar non supra grammati

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    So if you switch everything off, then you HAVE a fully manual camera. I do that as well, when I want to, and it gives me full control over everything, just like in the old days. Since my Pentax mounts every Pentax lens ever made, I can use lenses from back in the day with DOF scales, IR scales, etc. With my aftermarket split image viewfinder, I can focus manually just like with a film camera.

    I grew up with film cameras and my basement darkroom; I loved it. I switched to digital seamlessly and I love that too. I haven't lost anything, and I've gained quite a bit.

    Statements about how digital makes people worse photographers are just nonsense. The vast majority of photography has been vernacular snapshotting since Kodak, and it still is, so no surprises there. Those who want to learn the art of photography still can and do. Film doesn't make anything magically better, and digital doesn't make anything magically worse.

    Shoot film, shoot digital, enjoy what you shoot. But really, none of the anti-digital statements have any validity at all in my opinion. Just a bunch of old gumbies who can't adjust. I'm an old gumby myself, but I have somehow managed to make the transition. It can be done.
     
  4. Brian

    Brian An Old Geezer

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    The problem with electronics is the rapid obsolescence of the devices relatively speaking. Think of the rapidity of the disappearance of all the primary and storage tape systems, even those that were common within the time of say Windows 3.1, then then there was the 8" floppy formatted for TRSDOS and RS Xenix, 5 1/4" floppy discs with 3 different capacities, and even the 3.5" disc. Then go back to the several hard drive systems including the earliest mfm, scsi, even the PATA drive is getting hard to find and even mount is a new computer. Oh, then BETA, Super BETA, VCR, stereo VCR. Then there has been the 2 dvd standards. Such a mix and skip a generation and then trying to find a drive computer and drivers, well, I think you get the idea. Soon finding a Sony memory Stick and some of the flash cards will be difficult at best and readers even will be gone within a generation. Look for the drivers and a new cassette drive that was common during the early years of computers such as Commodore, Timex and such. Back then they were as common but finding one, getting it to mount and interface with today's OSs I think is impossible.

    Even formats of graphic formats has changed and many early ones are either gone or being dropped. No different than early word process or spreadsheet file formats. Look for say Wordstar readers today. I think only Wordperfect still supports it and not sure the newest X6 version does. As RAW is not a universal format person storing file in that format may at some point have issues.

    I agree storage is less bulky and electronic sharing is easier but I have been finding that persons are not indexing them well, erasing files, losing discs and not as appreciated as much as prints. My next door neighbor, an early digital adopter has external hard drives, discs and even discs from that weird Sony camera that recorded on a CD (remember that) and asking her to see her trip to the Aztec ruins about a decade ago yields nothing. She has never found the disc. What she has though, is the slides of the trip as they reside in a box file in a larger box. She has also found that she now will snap a ratio of some 20 digital photos for every analog she used to shoot and has mentioned she is getting fewer decent shots.

    I will admit that my mf slides can present a future problem as finding a replacement mf slide projector, even used would be all but impossible while 35mm projectors are still rather plentiful on rthe used market. Replacement bulbs are the challenge. Happily, there is the light table and with a mf, a magnifier is less needed. My some 3000 mf slides 1500 35mm slides and about 12000 negatives actually do not take that much space. I usually only got the negative developed and then decided on what to print and had internegatives and prints made of some slides with a result of maybe 800 prints. This does not count my collection of Polaroid prints.

    A fire will destroy a disc as easily as a print and recovering either from a major disaster is probably about equal in risk assessment. Floods, I agree favor the electronic files but like other professional services there are services to resuscitate negatives and slides damaged by water.
     
  5. GP49

    GP49 Super Member

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    For the brief time it was available, Kodachrome in 120 was no slouch either. I have photographs taken with my Rolleiflex using that film, that are incredible.
     
  6. Karl vd Berg

    Karl vd Berg Super Member

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    Great!

    Actually this thread is part of a discussion we had here a while ago about the work you are doing now:

    http://audiokarma.org/forums/showthread.php?t=505527
     
  7. Wigwam Jones

    Wigwam Jones Caesar non supra grammati

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    http://www.amateurphotographer.co.u...lement-over-loss-of-jfk-photo-archive-in-9-11

    A digital copy of a digital photo is 100% identical to the original. A large number of copies, properly distributed and kept updated, is inherently safer than film. A copy of a photograph or negative will always be inferior to the original, even if only in a small way.

    A single copy of a digital file is destroyed just as easily as a single copy of a negative. True. But it's very easy (and part of my day job) to keep electronic data safe. You simply cannot back up film in the same way.

    Any argument that film is inherently safer than digital is specious.
     
  8. BillyBatts

    BillyBatts ALOHA!

    Great thread.

    I used to shoot slow ISO especially for stills and portraits. Lots of B&W. The prints were spectacular due to lack of grain.

    As a Sidebar and proof of the resolution of these films, until quite recently, Radiologists only read Mammograms with "PLAIN FILM" rather than electronic media, simply because they needed the resolution of the film to see clearly enough whether or not Cancer was present. This has now changed, but not that long ago Plain Film ruled over digital.
     
  9. Cadillac Kid

    Cadillac Kid Addicted Member

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    The thing that strikes me about those images is the amount of apparent production that went into them. It's Hollywoods contributon to the war effort. Lighting, make-up, and wardrobe. Most are probably real workers, but they far from 'real'.
     
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2013
  10. ConradH

    ConradH Addicted Member

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    I've always wondered about this, as almost anything you put on-line is there forever. I figure the photos on my web site will outlive me by a large margin. I've lost a few prized negatives over the years and nothing will ever bring them back.
     
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2013
  11. Bogframe

    Bogframe www.bogframe.com

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    Yes it will, which is why I always suggest to my clients that the dic be put into a safety deposit box or getaway bag after the contents have been uploaded to a computer.
     
  12. MichaelJ

    MichaelJ Moderator Moderator

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    Kodak released a print film in the late 80's that was pretty amazing. Ektar 25. I shot numerous medium format rolls with it but sadly never got around to using any on my
    4x5. I really should get some of those negatives scanned.
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2014
  13. Karl vd Berg

    Karl vd Berg Super Member

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    Not to be forgotten...

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