Cross Processing expired Fuji Provia 100F

Every time I opened my fridge to select a roll of film, I could see a worn out package of Fuji Provia 100F film. I thought there was no really no reason to spend money on developing a roll which had expired at 2011. A waste of my time and money.

But as I was browsing, I saw a few images taken with slide film  which were cross processed and I found the results very interesting. 

Cross Processing a colour slide film means that you develop it with C41 chemicals which are normally for color negative film instead of using the E6 chemicals. Since this was an 7 years expired film, I decided to shoot this toll and cross process it.

My recent trip to Plastiras Lake (GREECE) gave me the opportunity to use this roll. Landscapes with many scenery and  color variations were a good place to make some images. I used the Nikon F801s camera with Nikon 50mm f/1.4D and Nikon 24mm f/2.8 lenses. Film was rated at ISO 100.

(click images to see larger size)

 

The results were beyond my expectations, I really expected to see some severe color casts, green or magenta, but to my surprise, many of the images came out with very interesting colors. Of course I had to post process the images, but not to the extent I thought, and some of them had a great color and look. An experiment that sure went very well!!

Many images were noisy, but that is natural for a 7 years old slide color film (which as I recall was not always stored in the fridge).  You can clearly see some color casts, but I really like the overall look of many of the images from this roll. 

All images were scanned with a Epson V500 scanner. Time for me to get a few more expired rolls of slide film and try this again!

©2018 Konstantinos Besios. All Rights Reserved.

You can buy fine art prints from my best images at my eshop.

 

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Plaubel Makina 67 with Fuji PRO400H

For today’s post I have 4 images taken with the Plaubel Makina 67 camera and Fujifilm PRO400H . I am fan of Kodak Portra 400 film, and consider it to be the most versatile film for my 6×7 medium format camera. The latitude of Porta 400 is legendary, it’s a film that virtually can be shot between 100 and 1600 ISO without having to pull or push in the lab. 

But Fuji PRo400h has been the favorite emulsion for wedding photographers all over the world, and since I am involved in wedding photography and cinematography business, I ordered a few rolls to test this film (which , as far as I can recall I haven’t shot before, I have mostly used Fuji Superia XTRA 400 and Reala in the past).

This film seems to be cooler than the Porta, and has a more pastel like look especially when overexposed at ISO 200 or 100. I rated my roll at ISO 200.

Now, before I got out and use it for commercial jobs, I had to make a few test shots. I have used Portra 400 for commercial work with great success, and know how to handle it in different situations. I have read that the PRO400H is not as tolerant to mistakes as the Portra, it can handle overexposure good but not underexposure. 

I used my favorite medium format camera, the Plaubel Makina 67 which is the camera I use for serious work (35mm film can’t really in most situations provide me with the quality needed).

From this roll, I will post today 4 images. They are not portrait works among them,  but I will soon upload photos with people also. 

My initial opinion , is that indeed this film has a cooler palette than the Portra. I like the rendering of this film quite a lot, its sharp and I didn’t have any messed up shots concerning exposure. All photos were shot under high contrasty conditions as you can see, and I was happy from the results.

A few more rolls involving people will  allow me to compare this film with the Porta 400 better, I will post these results soon.

©2018 Konstantinos Besios. All Rights Reserved.

You can buy fine art prints from my best images at my eshop.

 

 

 

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Nikon f801s with Cinestill 50D film

A daily trip to the beautiful village of Palaios Panteleimonas, GREECE gave me the chance to shoot my first roll of Cinestill 50D film. I’ve read a lot about this particular emulsion, which is actually cine film  prepped for C-41 development by having the the remjet backing removed. At ISO 50, it should also be one of the finest grain films.

I used my Nikon F801s with three lenses on this trip, the Nikon 50mm f/1.4D, Nikon 24mm f/2.8D and my favorite lens, the Nikkor 135mm f/2 DC

On many shots I used a polarizer filter. Many of my images were taken under harsh sunlight, so they lighting conditions were not optimal. The film was scanned on an EpsonV500 scanner.

Being a 50 ISO film, means that you need light or a fast lens when the light falls. The fine grain is definitely  there as expected. What troubled me during the scanning process and at post, was getting the colors right. I would often end up with greenish or magenta tints, which required some effort to correct (and not always to the point I wanted to). Now, you know I am not good with Photoshop or getting the color I want easily, that’s one of the reasons I shoot lots of film, since film  it has the look and color I like without spending much time in post process. This film gave me some difficulties, even more the Kodak Ektar 100 to get colors right. I have seen great photos taken with Cinestill 50D, so I may have to alter my usual workflow to get the look I like, but if I have to spend time to do this, I would rather shoot the Kodak Portra 160. (which I also can find in a lower price than Cinestill).

So, my first effort with this film was not what I expected. I liked the fine grain, but the color didn’t really work for me. Maybe in the future I will try it one more time.

Many thanks to my friend Ntinos Dadalas for taking the time to pose for a few portraits. I really liked the look of Cinestill 50D when converted to black and white as you can see below.

(My lovely girlfriend Vaia Vaia Daldis who also happens to be a  great photographer).

©2018 Konstantinos Besios. All Rights Reserved.

You can buy fine art prints from my best images at my eshop.

 

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Nikon F801s and Ilford FP4

The frequent readers of this blog know that I love rangefinder cameras. The Leica M6 and Plaubel Makina 67 are my  favorite and the ones that has stayed with me. I used to own a Fuji GSW690iii which I consider it to be the best medium format camera for landscape photography but I sold it a couple of years ago (with many regrets!!)

Working with a rangefinder camera like the M6 or the Makina, is not always easy. There were times where I just needed a more automated film camera for my travels, so I chose the Nikon F801s. It’s a modern camera (for a film camera that is), with great exposure metering and auto focus. I didn’t like anything fancier like the Nikon F4 for example, and the price os the F801s was really very very cheap.

I have shot a few rolls with it, and indeed is way more comfortable to work with compared to the Leica M6. The M6 still remains my favorite camera and the lenses are awesome, but there is room for the Nikon as well in my arsenal. 

The photos below were shot at the beautiful village of Makrinitsa, at Greece. I used Ilford FP4 and two old lenses, the Nikon 24mm f2.8D and Nikon 50mm f/1.4 AF D. Both have aperture rings, which is crucial when shooting with the F801s, in order to change aperture (with G lenses you are forced to shoot them wide open).

I used a red and yellow filter in most of my images to increase contrast. 

The film was developed using Ilford Ilfotec DD-X which is my favorite developer (10 minutes at 20 Celsius), and scanned with the Epson V500 scanner. 

©2018 Konstantinos Besios. All Rights Reserved.

You can buy fine art prints from my best images at my eshop.

 

 

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Infrared Photos February 2018

My most recent infrared images taken with Leica M8, Voigtlander Skopar 21mm f/4 lens and B+W 092 infrared filter. (Click on image to see large size)

©2018 Konstantinos Besios. All Rights Reserved.

You can buy fine art prints from my best images at my eshop.

 

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Fine Art Studio Photography with 6×7 film

I consider myself mainly a landscape and travel photographer, it’s the kind of photography I like and practice mostly.But when your girlfriend is a talented portrait photographer with great Photoshop skills, eventually you will try to make a different kind of image.

Together with Vaia Daldis, we decided to make a fine art photo in studio. She and our lovely dog Persa, offered to pose for the shot. I chose to use the Plaubel Makina 67 loaded with Kodak Portra 400 film. This is a film with a huge dynamic range, and my favorite color film for medium format.

I used two sources of light, a Nikon SB-900 flash and a LED light. In order to meter flash, I used a Sekonic L-308s light meter. I also used a digital camera to test the flash exposure. Since I have relied at the past on my meter and digital camera for metering exposure with flash, I found out that i many cases the readings I got , led to underexposed photos. Also, I was planning on using my large format camera for some shots, so I decided to test exposure by shooting instant film with the Sinar Norma. 

I shot three instant frames, bracketing exposure, and the correct settings for flash proved to be 1 1/3 stops over my meter and digital camera readings. It’s sad that Fuji decided to discontinue the FP-100C and FP-300B instant film, since these instant pictures are a valuable helper in situations like this and also they are a form of art themselves just like Polaroid images. 

Anyway, I shot a roll of film with Makina 67 at f/8 and 1/60 shutter speed. I rated Portra at ISO 200.

Every single image came out with the correct exposure, and we chose the best one to edit. 

Vaia did an excellent post process edit, and here is the final image (click on photo to see large size).

Both of us could see that there is a certain 3D pop in this image compared to other fine arts photos we have made with digital cameras, and this the main reason I choose to use medium format film for this kind of work. 

Keep in mind that the film was scanned on a Epson V500, which is not a good film scanner, but still the final result was great when printed A4 size. I placed the image straight on the scanner glass with a piece of glass on it to keep it flat, which proved to be sharper and with more details from the scan I did with the film holder. Fortunetally, there were no Newton rings.

I am sending soon the negative to a lab in order to get a better quality scan and see how it compares with the V500. Next photo session will be with the Sinar Norma large format camera!

You can check out the excellent portraiture work of Vaia Daldis at her site and Instagram pages.

©2018 Konstantinos Besios. All Rights Reserved.

You can buy fine art prints from my best images at my eshop.

 

 

 

 

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Sunset

A short break from film, images shot during sunset with Sony a6300 and Nikon D800E. I really should have with me my film camera loaded with Fuji Velvia , but at present my film cameras are loaded with black and white film, and sunset is all about color!

I used the Sony 18-105mm lens on the a6300, not a great lens for photography (but a very good lens for video), and on the D800E I had the Nikon 135mm f/2 DC. Despite the fact that this a portrait lens, I often use it for landscape photography.

©2018 Konstantinos Besios. All Rights Reserved.

You can buy fine art prints from my best images at my eshop.

 

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Velvia Slideshow 4K

Fuji Velvia is a legendary slide film . Introduced in 1990, it became the favorite film for landscape photography. The unique saturation and the way it renders colors has made it my favorite choice when I am shooting landscapes. 

Velvia is a very demanding film, very difficult to expose properly, due to it’s limited dynamic range. The slightest mistake when judging exposure can lead to a ruined image. Especially in contrasty scenes, I always try to use Graduated ND filters to compensate for this lack of dynamic range. It is also a tricky film for long exposures due to it’s reciprocity failure. But, it remains the king of films when we are talking about landscape photography.

I am starting a video blog on Youtube about film photography, and the first video is a collection of images I have shot with both Velvia 50 and Velvia 100 with various cameras. Watch it in 4K resolution !!

©2018 Konstantinos Besios. All Rights Reserved.

You can buy fine prints images in my eshop.

 

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A panoramic 6×17 photo

The photo above (click on it to see large view) was shot with a Gaoersi 617 panoramic camera, Nikkor 90mm f/4.5 lens and Fuji Velvia 50 slide film. I used a LEE 2 stops ND Graduated filter. Aperture was f/22 and shutter speed 1/8.

Shooting with the Gaoersi 617 is actually like shooting with a large format camera. You compose and focus through a ground glass, and then you place the film back to get the shot. It is a slow workflow. With this camera you only get 4 frames per roll, so you better make each one count!

The huge negative (or slide film) when scanned can be printed in very large print sizes. 

These days the preferred method of making a large panoramic image by stitching multiple shots from a digital camera and achieve way more resolution than a 6×17 negative. But the process is not always easy if you want to get the quality demanded for a flawless large print. 

For ultra high resolution images (over 300 megapixels) I also use a digital camera and the stitching technique, but I can easily get a 100 megapixels equivalent  panoramic picture from the Gaoersi (the number is not random, I have compared my scanned negatives with the digital files, shot at the same location side by side). And in my case, with a 6×17 camera I also get the look of film which is my favorite.  Also, a  big plus for me, is that I get to see the final frame on the ground glass and compose better, which I really prefer it from shooting multiple frames and then cropping (and in many cases deal with parallax). 

The photos below are actual crops from the scanned slide so you can see the amount of detail (keep note that the film was scanned with a flatbed Epson V700, a dedicated film scanner can produce much better results).

©2018 Konstantinos Besios. All Rights Reserved.

You can buy fine art prints from my best images at my eshop.

 

 

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At Meteora with E6 slide film

For today’s post, a collection of photos I have shot at the beautiful location of Meteora, GREECE with E6 slide film.

My favorite slide film is Fuji Velvia 50, although I recently use the Velvia 100, which I also like. I consider Velvia to be the best emulsion for landscape photography (as many others do!). I have also shot Provia 100 and 400, but I was never really a great fan of the Provia.

Exposing correctly with slide film is not easy, especially with Velvia which has a very limited dynamic range. The use of ND filters is necessary in contrasty conditions , and you better nail your exposure or you end up with a mediocre photo.

Besides that, processing is very important , so a good lab is a must in order to get a good image. 

I used to view my 35mm slides on a projector, a great experience, but I haven’t shot 35mm slide film for a long time, and I don’t plan too, I will stick with medium and large format.

Here are the images (click on image to view it large)

 

(Fuji GSW690iii, Fujifilm Velvia 50)

 

(Plaubel Makina 67, Fuji Provia 400X)

 

(Plaubel Makina 67, Fuji Provia 400X)

 

(Mamiya 645 Pro TL, Fujifilm Velvia 50)

 

(Plaubel Makina 67, Fuji Provia 400X)

 

(Plaubel Makina 67,Fujifilm Velvia 50)

 

(Sinar Norma 4×5 view camera, Fujifilm Provia 100F)

©2018 Konstantinos Besios. All Rights Reserved.

You can buy selected fine arts of my photos at my eshop.

 

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