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It's been over 20 years since I shot B&W film...
Posted By: Fritz, 05-18-2008, 10:47 PM

It's been over 20 years since I shot b&w film, until today. I took a walk around Cape Mears and took some shots of the Light House. Hey, it was kinda fun! Let me know what you think, and what I can do to improve. I used Kodak Professional BW400CN, in my ME-Super, with a Super Takumar 28mm f3.5.

1.


2.


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4.


5.


Thanks!
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05-18-2008, 11:24 PM   #2
WJW
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And you still haven't since that is color film w/o the color. ;-) My favorites are the first and last.
05-18-2008, 11:31 PM   #3
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My favorite is #4,

Although it's colour film w/o the color like you said WJW, from what I understand it's just about the closest thing to B&W that most places can develop.

A friend of mind brought in several rolls of B&W into a couple of shops, only to have them destroyed.
So it's a safe alternative. My local shop was the ones whom figured out what happened.
05-19-2008, 01:07 AM   #4
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My favorite is the last one. The reflection of yourself in the centre just makes a contrast to the lifeless surrounding, painting a great picture of derelict sad feelings overall.

05-19-2008, 06:07 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by WJW Quote
And you still haven't since that is color film w/o the color. ;-) My favorites are the first and last.
Thanks. You are of course correct about the film. But it is convenient since I can buy it and get it developed locally. So I guess I'm still in search of some B&W film shots. So what kind of differences would I see if I used a "true" b&w film? I thought the grain and texture looked pretty good with this stuff. But maybe a little dull? It was a gray Oregon coast day.

QuoteOriginally posted by little laker Quote
My favorite is #4,

Although it's colour film w/o the color like you said WJW, from what I understand it's just about the closest thing to B&W that most places can develop.

A friend of mind brought in several rolls of B&W into a couple of shops, only to have them destroyed.
So it's a safe alternative. My local shop was the ones whom figured out what happened.
Thanks Stu. I noticed this C41 process film and I thought I would give it a go. For real b&w I'd have to mail order, then mail it off to who knows where for processing. You are really lucky to have someone local to take care of your processing needs.

QuoteOriginally posted by roentarre Quote
My favorite is the last one. The reflection of yourself in the centre just makes a contrast to the lifeless surrounding, painting a great picture of derelict sad feelings overall.
Thanks roentarre. I almost stepped off to the side to take the shot to avoid the reflection, but then I changed my mind. Sort of a gray day self portrait.
05-19-2008, 06:57 AM   #6
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Just teasing about the color/b&w bit, although I find the Kodak stuff a pain to print (due to the orange background) and I hate the long exposure times in the darkroom.

As for the difference in look, depending on the film and developer used, it could run the gamut from nearly identical to completely different. I tend to use Rodinal to get very sharp edges but with a slight increase in grain. The C41 tends to have little or no apparent grain but the edges always looked softer to me. I have used BW400CN and would again (or Ilford XP2) if I didn't develop my own film.
05-19-2008, 07:00 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Fritz Quote
So what kind of differences would I see if I used a "true" b&w film?

Trust me, the differences when using black and white film can be HUGE.

05-19-2008, 09:10 AM   #8
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Thanks for the information.

I've never tried it before, but maybe I should check into developing my own b&w film. I'm fairly competent with my hands, so I could probably figure it out. It might be fun. Anyone have a good "how to" on developing b&w film, or where would I learn how to do this? I'd probably only need to develop the negatives, then I would just scan it into the computer.
05-19-2008, 02:51 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Fritz Quote
Anyone have a good "how to" on developing b&w film, or where would I learn how to do this? I'd probably only need to develop the negatives, then I would just scan it into the computer.
Try: Black & White World: A Celebration of Photography. Photoshop monochrome techniques, traditional darkroom how-to advice, famous photographers, digital cameras and software, and much more!

And for starting points with various film/developer combinations:

The Massive Dev Chart: B/W Film Development Times, Processing Data

Many libraries still have basic books on the subject and Kodak used to have a very good darkroom guide that was available at most photo shops and larger bookstores.
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