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08-31-2014, 02:40 PM   #16
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Heh, maybe I should list my Spotmatic SP1000 with the Soligor 35-70. I've doen one roll of film in it, but film doesn't hold the fun for me that digital does.

08-31-2014, 03:54 PM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by MD Optofonik Quote
It was, and I imagine still is, standard practice. A syllabus is not a set of options. One does not buy what texts and materials one wishes, one buys what is required. Pursuing photography outside of an academic setting does not require standardization, testing, and evaluation. Cheating is a very real issue for institutions and instructors and cause for serious disciplinary action; expulsion is often the result. Requiring an all manual camera is just another tool in discouraging such behavior, even from the best students, when the pressure is on.

Perhaps, times have changed and requirements aren't so stringent anymore. Everything seems geared toward the lowest common denominator these days so it wouldn't surprise me.
Well, we don't know what level class this is; I suppose it could be some phd-level seminar in "junky old cameras in art" or something. My comments are based on the usual introductory/undergrad classes.

There is a range of reasonableness that an instructor has to conform to, and manual-only is not a reasonable requirement. Certainly not every instructor operates on the bleeding edge, and that's ok, but this is way, way beyond that. It would be like a computer programming instructor making students submit programs on punched cards.

When I taught in college, sometimes students cheated. Technology has made cheating easier and more difficult to detect in some respects, although there is software available now that attempts to combat that. But I absolutely don't see how using an auto-exposure camera in a photography class would be a mechanism for cheating.

Incidentally, from personal experience I can tell you that students ask about variations to what's stated as required in a syllabus all the time. Besides scheduling issues, they ask if they can use the previous edition of the textbook, or if they can use an entirely different book, or countless other variations. So ultimately yes, students do buy (or not) what they feel like. Instructors try to evaluate students based on results, not what text they used to get the results.

I don't believe film, with or without auto-exposure, has any place in anything short of a fairly advanced class, perhaps one covering historical photographic techniques, but assuming that someone believes film is an acceptable approach, certainly any camera with adjustable shutter and aperture would be more than sufficient.
08-31-2014, 04:45 PM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by tibbitts Quote
I don't believe film, with or without auto-exposure, has any place in anything short of a fairly advanced class, perhaps one covering historical photographic techniques,...
I would think any class that teaches photography as fine art would use film. A commercial photography major would probably be a candidate for skipping "historical" film techniques, however, I had to study Gregorian chant and compose short pieces in the Baroque style as a music major in the 80's.
08-31-2014, 08:40 PM   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by MD Optofonik Quote
I would think any class that teaches photography as fine art would use film. A commercial photography major would probably be a candidate for skipping "historical" film techniques, however, I had to study Gregorian chant and compose short pieces in the Baroque style as a music major in the 80's.
Yes in art schools and colleges photography courses often start with film classes and for more of a reason than it's older than digital. I recently read an article where art schools that tore down their darkrooms at the beginning of the digital age have brought them back. It is sad that so many judge the world by what they like rather than on other things. Film photography may not be as a large part of photography as it was in the past but it is still a current process and apparently sales of film has increased slowly over the last 5 years.

An instructor who requires their student to have a manual only film camera is proabaly not mean, stupid or old fashion but more likely to be experiences and knows what works best for what they are trying to teach.

To OP: try to find out first if it is a camera capable of being shot in manual or a manual only camera that is required and if it is the later there are many other K models that are better and less expensive than the K1000 which is more expensive because it is the one that students are out to get.

08-31-2014, 09:55 PM   #20
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Regardless of how we feel about the value of film being taught in photography classes, hopefully everybody can agree that there is no valid reason for requiring a manual-only camera vs. a camera that is capable of, say, aperture or shutter-priority auto exposure. Hopefully the OP will find that essentially any film-era camera will suffice.
09-01-2014, 08:10 AM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by RGlasel Quote
Not knowing how familiar the original poster is with 30 year old camera technology, I will point out that DX encoding is a pattern of black and reflective squares on the film canister. Does this class provide you with film to shoot with (presumably with the instructor filling canisters from a reel of bulk film) or is commercially packaged film used? I have fond memories of the P3N I purchased in 1985, it was the first SLR camera I ever owned, and I used it until 2001 when it was stolen out of my vehicle.
Hi,
We are purchasing our own film. No point n shoot, no zoom lenses, nor digital cameras allowed. Manual SLR cam w/normal fixed lens 35,50, 55 mm. It's exciting, as we will be learning to expose & develop, make contact sheets and enlarge negatives. B & W film. Kodak Tri-X 400 ASA 35mm, 36 exp. or Arista Premium ISO 400, 35mm or other format, 36 exposure b&w. No TMax or C-41 color/b&w film.
So, having said all that and reading your post I know I cannot use the Pentax P3n. I found a Canon AE1 on eBay and just purchased it for $40.00. I hope I didn't screw up!

---------- Post added 09-01-14 at 11:15 AM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by Lowell Goudge Quote
Check here for a manual
http://www.cameramanuals.org/pentax_pdf/pentax_p3n-1.pdf

In reading it it supports all automatic modes, and manual, but as others have noted, it requires DX coding of the film, if the film is non DX coded, it assumes ISO 100, which means other speeds of film would require manual exposure calculation.

Check with your instructor as to whether it is an all manual camera, or a camera that supports full manual mode
Thank you. And, I am familiar with the DX coding now.
I do see the little red stripe inside the camera that will override if I cover it up. I want to keep the integrity of the Pentax intact, so I just bought a Canon AE1 on ebay for $40.00 .....sound like a fair price, the camera looks nice and well kept.

---------- Post added 09-01-14 at 11:18 AM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by boriscleto Quote
If the instructor is inflexible, don't bother with an overpriced K1000. Hit eBay for a Vivitar V3800N. It's fully manual, has manual ISO settings, and you can get one with a 50mm F/1.7 lens, or just use a Pentax 50mm lens, it's a PK mount camera. There is a BiN for $100...

Pentax cameras before the P series used foam light seals. These seals break down over time. The cost of having someone replace the seals can double the cost of an old Pentax camera.
Thank you for the advice from everyone. I can't wait to post some pics!
Ana
09-01-2014, 08:44 AM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ana Maria Quote
Hi,
We are purchasing our own film. No point n shoot, no zoom lenses, nor digital cameras allowed. Manual SLR cam w/normal fixed lens 35,50, 55 mm. It's exciting, as we will be learning to expose & develop, make contact sheets and enlarge negatives. B & W film. Kodak Tri-X 400 ASA 35mm, 36 exp. or Arista Premium ISO 400, 35mm or other format, 36 exposure b&w. No TMax or C-41 color/b&w film.
So, having said all that and reading your post I know I cannot use the Pentax P3n. I found a Canon AE1 on eBay and just purchased it for $40.00. I hope I didn't screw up!
Any film you buy from Kodak will have DX coding. Arista Premium should have DX coding too, but good luck finding any, it was discontinued.

If you can use and AE-1 for the class then you can use a P3 as well.
09-01-2014, 08:51 AM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by tibbitts Quote
The vast majority of the classes just require a camera capable of manual aperture and shutter speed setting. Any instructor who'd require a camera that isn't capable of any automation needs to be put out to pasture before (s)he causes any more damage.
Aaaw. You know I think he just wants to teach the beauty of photography in it's most natural, basic instinct form. This is my opinion only. I like the beauty of knowing I will create a photograph from beginning to end. I'm hooked already.
A

09-01-2014, 10:49 AM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ana Maria Quote
Aaaw. You know I think he just wants to teach the beauty of photography in it's most natural, basic instinct form. This is my opinion only. I like the beauty of knowing I will create a photograph from beginning to end. I'm hooked already.
A
Although it's off-topic, one issue I have with starting out with film and darkroom work is that supplies are expensive, and discourage experimentation and refinement. Someone will be along shortly to claim that expense encourages "doing it right the first time", but once you get past the initial learning curve and get close on that first try, you still have that last degree of refinement for which there's no substitute for trial and error. Generally the more money we threw at photography back in the film days, the better the results. I look at digital as a kind of economic equalizer, where the only cost of experimentation is the time you're willing to put in. At some level and in some photographic fields you still need expensive equipment to get the best results, but digital has leveled the playing field considerably.

But either way, digital or film, you're still creating a photograph from beginning to end.
09-01-2014, 01:40 PM   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by tibbitts Quote
Although it's off-topic, one issue I have with starting out with film and darkroom work is that supplies are expensive, and discourage experimentation and refinement. Someone will be along shortly to claim that expense encourages "doing it right the first time", but once you get past the initial learning curve and get close on that first try, you still have that last degree of refinement for which there's no substitute for trial and error. Generally the more money we threw at photography back in the film days, the better the results. I look at digital as a kind of economic equalizer, where the only cost of experimentation is the time you're willing to put in. At some level and in some photographic fields you still need expensive equipment to get the best results, but digital has leveled the playing field considerably.

But either way, digital or film, you're still creating a photograph from beginning to end.
Thank you Tibbits that was poetic. While I do agree with you on all your points. The only thing the college supplies is the instructor, all the chemicals, a locker, apron, gloves and a fantastic darkroom and equipment. The rest is on me...16 rolls of film, 100 sheets paper, negative sleeve sheets, and access to the lab until 10 pm every day. By the end of the term we should have built a portfolio of 10 of our best photos. Wish me well. THX. Ana

---------- Post added 09-01-14 at 05:28 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by tibbitts Quote
Regardless of how we feel about the value of film being taught in photography classes, hopefully everybody can agree that there is no valid reason for requiring a manual-only camera vs. a camera that is capable of, say, aperture or shutter-priority auto exposure. Hopefully the OP will find that essentially any film-era camera will suffice.
Tibbitts, I have no choice in the mater as another member posted it's a syllabus. And to be quite frank, I really want to learn from this particular professor. He studied @ Columbia in NY & Parsons full ride. Besides that paper from CU or P, he is really talented. I believe one can teach oneself the mechanics, the rest is a gift. See what you think of his work www.tonychirinos.com . Thanks, I would love feedback on his work. Curious and making sure I'm not "loca".
A
09-01-2014, 04:28 PM   #26
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Question, along the lines of the earlier conversation: is the 16 rolls (not 20? I thought a brick was 20, but it's been so long I can't remember now) and 100 sheets a minimum, or is using more considered cheating? That would be one concern I'd have, where throwing more money at the problem would produce a better result. I have no idea how I'd enforce a limit like that as an instructor, but I wouldn't want wealthier students to have an advantage, either.

I looked at the website, and it looked very professional, but confusing, and I didn't want to work that hard at viewing everything.

I'm definitely not qualified to comment on the art aspect of photography, so no comments in that regard. But the fact that he's got all his work on a website (I guess, even though I found it hard to navigate) must mean he's good at scanning. If I could take one course in photography, it would be a course in scanning. Partly to learn good technique, and partly to get access to those pricey drum scanners, so I could come away with high-res scans of my favorite 1000 or so color transparencies. I guess I'd have to drag that semester out a little longer than the advertised length :-)
09-01-2014, 05:08 PM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by MD Optofonik Quote
Perhaps, times have changed and requirements aren't so stringent anymore. Everything seems geared toward the lowest common denominator these days so it wouldn't surprise me.
It depends on the school and the instructor. The schools near my home generally allow automated exposure cameras as long as they provide full support for metered manual. That being said, almost all use the K1000 as an example of an acceptable camera. The local shops do a bang-up business selling K1000 kits at outrageous prices.

While the K1000 reigns as the King of student cameras, there are many other options for quality manual exposure bodies. In addition to the Pentax models noted above, I would add my personal favorite, the KM. If non-Pentax cameras are to be considered, I can recommend:
  • Minolta SRT 101 and similar Minolta models
  • Olympus OM-1
  • Nikon FM and FM2
I would like to make a small comment in regards to cost for foam seals. Yes, most vintage film cameras use the foam seals and yes, the seals on many are in poor shape. The good news is that any camera purchased from a reputable shop (including online merchants) will have had the seals evaluated and/or replaced. Another element of good news is that replacement of the seals is not always expensive. My local repair guy charges a flat rate of $49 for seal replacement, light cleaning, and shutter/meter evaluation. If a person has a steady hand and about an hour's time, Jon Goodman's pre-cut seal kits* are still only $10 USD including shipping.


Steve

* PM me for Jon's e-mail address

---------- Post added 09-01-14 at 05:25 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by Ana Maria Quote
So, having said all that and reading your post I know I cannot use the Pentax P3n. I found a Canon AE1 on eBay and just purchased it for $40.00. I hope I didn't screw up!
The manual exposure support on the AE1 is not very good in that setting the correct aperture cannot easily be done with your eye to the viewfinder (the meter is only coupled to shutter). It is the one big weak point of an otherwise nice camera. Based on your description of the course and the films being used, a P3N would work nicely. All the films listed have DX-encoded canisters.


Steve

---------- Post added 09-01-14 at 05:30 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by boriscleto Quote
Arista Premium should have DX coding too, but good luck finding any, it was discontinued.
Arista Premium 400 is currently in stock at Freestyle (1 Sept 2014) and at a very nice price point too. Apparently they were able to secure a new contract with the maker.

Arista Premium 400 ISO 35mm x 24 exp. | Freestyle Photographic Supplies.


Steve

P.S. This was a surprise to me as well, now if they could only bring back Legacy Pro 100

Last edited by stevebrot; 09-01-2014 at 05:37 PM.
09-01-2014, 05:37 PM   #28
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
Arista Premium 400 is currently in stock at Freestyle (1 Sept 2014) and at a very nice price point too. Apparently they were able to secure a new contract with the maker.

Arista Premium 400 ISO 35mm x 24 exp. | Freestyle Photographic Supplies.


Steve
That is 24 exposure. The OP specified 36 exposure.
09-01-2014, 06:38 PM   #29
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I'd agree that the AE-1 isn't the handiest camera, because it has only shutter-priority automation and a very limited viewfinder display, but it's a fairly minor inconvenience if you're only going to be using it for a one-semester class.

The more important limitation going forward is the FD mount, which Canon completely abandoned, with essentially zero backward compatibility. You can use many FD lenses with adapters in totally manual mode on some mirrorless cameras, but realistically you'll want to choose a different system before investing in any additional lenses.

If for some reason you actually do want to pursue film photography after your class is over, you might consider a system that would allow you to more conveniently share lenses between digital and film-era bodies.
09-02-2014, 12:24 AM   #30
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Arista is re-packaged Tri-X, so they're telling you you can only use that one film, which seems a bit limiting. I suppose it makes it easier for the class if everyone is using the same thing. By the way, T-Max is superb too.
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