I've been going through old work lately, in particular stuff I shot on Kodachrome 64. I really wish I used more of this back when it was still available. I shot this back in Fall 2006 a year after my dad passed. I was still dealing with his death and nothing was going quite right, I gave up my first attempt at online dating (in hindsight maybe not the best time while dealing with the loss of a parent but I was lonely, so there) and I was between jobs at the time. I needed to get out of the house and do some photography, I left early one weekday morning with one camera, one lens and one roll of Kodachrome and drove up into Caledon exploring the countryside during the week. I needed time alone to clear my head and explore.
Yes, Kodak Alaris has made noises about exploring the possibility of bringing Kodachrome back, I really want to believe that will happen, it sadly most likely won't. Here's why, Kodachrome was one of the oldest colour films on the market and had insanely …
I haven't done a lot of night photography of late even less in black and white. I met up with my friend John Meadows, do click through and check out his blog, I love his photography, anyway, wandering off topic a bit. He wanted to test out a film for night photography on the boardwalk in the Beaches, I came along for the ride.
Shooting night photography with film is done 98% of the time on a tripod, a decent one like a Manfrotto, Gitzo or Vanguard and avoid the cheapie stamped aluminum jobs you used to find at Black's Photo. I chose Ilford HP5 400, I've shot kilometres of the stuff over the years and I know it behaves in my go to developers and it has great reciprocity characteristics. What does that mean? Say if I wanted to expose a shot at night the light meter says 15 seconds at F11, in reality, to get what I want, I have to expose for 50 seconds. Film manufacturers have tech sheets for reference here's an example from Ilford's HP5 400
During my short stay over the Christmas Break in Toronto, I got a chance to wander around lover Riverdale and Leslieville along Queen Street. I like the east end more than the west end these days if I were asked to pick which part of Toronto I would rather live in. Short answer, food, there are a lot of great restaurants and pubs in this neighbourhood along with a microbrewery I've walked past on several occasions and never gone in, yet. The other thing development is not over the top compared to Queen West, especially near Dufferin.
Now the sun started to poke through and I got a chance to see how Rollei Retro 400S would handle bright sunlight. You won't be needing a yellow filter to bump contrast with this film. Again expose at around 200 ISO instead of box speed, process as per online instructions (the development chart in the packaging is way off) or the Massive Development Chart and you'll get some magic.
I took my Nikon N90s with me to the Beaches over the hump time between Christmas and New Years and got a chance to try out my Christmas present, a Nikkor second generation AF 50 f1.8 lens. It's been ages since I messed around with an autofocus lens and found it fun to work with. I used the camera on manual and on single focus as opposed to continuous autofocus (great for moving objects).
This was also a chance to test Rollei Retro 400S, now first off it is not really 400 ISO in HC110 B which is my go to developer, more like 200 ISO. With all the recent hype with Japan Camera Hunter's Street Pan 400, I wanted to try another near infrared film and see what it can do. Oh baby this has fine grain and handles lousy grey days as well as JCH400. Rollei Retro 400S is coated on a clear polyester base which means you have be careful loading the camera, stay away from windows, otherwise you will fog the first three frames! I just ordered some more of this film and I want to try it on br…
I spend New Year's Eve in the Beaches, my brother takes his family to Montreal, I look after Rufus and the house. It's a nice change of scenery any time of the year and I decided to compare JCH 400 to Rollei Retro 400s (upcoming blog post). I do want to support Japan Camera Hunter's film. It's good for film photography to have another emulsion on the market. There has been some controversy within the community, some photographers think JCH400 is dead stock Agfa product when it's a traffic surveillance film put back into production. I think people are annoyed at paying $15 a roll for a niche film. It's not cheap but the more people buy the cheaper it gets due to the volume in the manufacturing process. So let's hope Bellamy of Japan Camera Hunter gets an opening order for a skid load of Street Pan 400 from B&H Photo.
Camera: Nikon FM, Nikkor Ai 50 f2 lens.
Film: JCH 400, HC110 B.