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06-05-2011, 08:29 PM   #61
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QuoteOriginally posted by wildman Quote
Your post of this "film" picture raises a reasonable question I think:

Haven't you, in fact and by necessity, posted a digital picture? If you posted this picture to illustrate what film can do and digital can not do using a digital format (a JPG) haven't you contradicted yourself?

In other words any difference that makes no difference is no difference.

Or perhaps I just misunderstand your intent in posting the pic?
Nesster's post is a good illustration of the inherent behaviour of film in a particular situation. The posting is a digital image, but it reflects the character of the original film. I expect a digital shot made at the same time could be made to resemble the film shot by a skilfull Photoshop user.

The difference is that those of us who understand film, scanning, and image editing often find it convenient and enjoyable to work with a flim original rather than employing convoluted post-processing of digital shots to achieve the same end. This is particularly the case when we are aiming at something different from generic DSLR rendering.

I sometimes shoot crappy film with crappy lenses to achieve the vintage look that others in this thread have touched on. I could get to the same end result from a DSLR shot, but I have more fun shooting film. I like the look. I like messing around with old cameras. So what?

I've been doing digital imaging professionally since 1993. My world won't end when film tanks, but in the meantime I'll continue to use it.

John


Last edited by John Poirier; 06-05-2011 at 09:38 PM. Reason: spelling
06-05-2011, 11:22 PM   #62
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QuoteOriginally posted by gofour3 Quote
Actually I would fall into that camp. There are some films that can create an image that can’t be replicated in digital and scanning those images will also never fully capture the original film image. Kodachrome and most b&w films fall into that camp.

However the main reason I will never shoot digital is the computer part of the process. I only scan a small percentage of my film and that’s only so I can post the images online. I loath scanning or any form of PP s/w, it’s not even remotely fun for me and has nothing to do with why I got into photography over 35 years ago.

Phil.
Yes Phil, the way film is recording the energy of the light and renders it, is very different compared to digital recording.
One of the manny reasons is that light is circular and digital is pendular. Film sees and record circular, digital sees circular and records pendular.
I have tried to render the so called 'film effect' by digital means, and never really succeeded.
The digital photo's are far to clean, clinically clean, film has rather 'normal' imperfections.
Film it's like having summer freckles, which are 'normal' and digital is like that 'portraitprofessional' stuff permanently turned on. What if a sign of character (individuality?) is wiped off so things fit in to the 'general standard' what supposed to be easing life...
In attachment you can see one of these try-outs I made a few years ago. At the time (2009) I was shooting a K10 with M-50mm 1.4 (@ 400 ASA) and the film shot was on FOMA 400 (Hasselblad + planar 80 mm), scanned on a Epson 4870. The photo's were shot on the same day on the same spot and in the same light.
I do admit that my digital skills where rather 'simple' then.

Last edited by philippe; 08-19-2011 at 12:08 PM.
06-06-2011, 04:53 AM   #63
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QuoteOriginally posted by John Poirier Quote
I sometimes shoot crappy film with crappy lenses to achieve the vintage look that others in this thread have touched on.
Yes that is what I am coming to understand by a careful reading of these posts. A sort of embracing of of the idiosyncrasies of film and it's technical limitations is precisely what gives film it's charm and character for many in this thread. After all we are taking shots of things found in ordinary daily life not aerial photos or micro photographs of a virus on a slide.

I can understand this very well. For me what a photo means to the viewer always trumps what a photo is.

I know this isn't exactly what is meant here by "film" but is my clumsy attempt to capture a little of films character. I rarely ever do this but just thought I'd give it a shot. This is all strictly digital and accomplished through PP. I pretty much just accepted the presets of my BW conversion software.

The last one is just a completely desaturated color shot with a bit of dodge and burn to give it a more "natural" tonal range.

Taken with a K20d. The first two with a Sigma 10-20mm F/3.5 wide angle and the second with an FA35 at F2 as I recall.

Last edited by wildman; 06-17-2011 at 11:15 AM.
06-06-2011, 06:21 AM   #64
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I ignore scanning. I shoot, send to Dwayne's (some 35mm done locally) and either hang on the wall or photo album archive. A few exceptional prints get a larger print treatment. Everything online is digital with printing done in photobooks (love those). My biggest issue is getting quality b&w prints on silver.

I have small children. It's amazing how they gravitate to the physical albums versus online or iPhone/iPad viewing. The love the instant prints of my Fuji Instax. There is some deep psychology at work there. My film shots honor that making for a richer experience.

06-06-2011, 06:48 AM   #65
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QuoteOriginally posted by MattC Quote
The thing is, people generally (myself included) like to hold and look at something physical, or see some kind of physical result - digital, while having it's numerous benefits, does not produce anything physical, and I believe people do not place as much value on these images due to this fact.

I certainly see film as continuing as a niche market, but I don't think we will see the point where it is no longer available for a fair while to come.
This is exactly why I still mostly shoot MF film. Although my digital images are nice in their own right, I still can't see them as being anywhere near as valuable as my slides because of their physicality.
06-06-2011, 06:50 AM   #66
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QuoteOriginally posted by wildman Quote
...
I know this isn't exactly what is meant here by "film" but is my clumsy attempt to capture a little of films character.
Halos and weird blotchy spots? Looks more like HDR gone bad than film.
06-06-2011, 07:30 AM   #67
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QuoteOriginally posted by tuco Quote
Halos and weird blotchy spots? Looks more like HDR gone bad than film.
My impression was that the first two look distinctly digital while the last (the cat) has a film-like quality.

Beyond that, I am glad you dropped into this thread since you are a bit of a craftsman with your film technique. Your recent photo of the little girl at the baseball stadium would be difficult with most digital gear and is a clear testament to your skills with the camera and with development.


Steve
06-06-2011, 03:05 PM   #68
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QuoteOriginally posted by tuco Quote
Halos and weird blotchy spots? Looks more like HDR gone bad than film.

Looks like I shouldn't give up my day job as a shameless digital hack.

06-07-2011, 07:25 AM   #69
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Found this on CNN today, kind of fits this topic:

The art of manual photography: Beauty in imperfection | CNNGo.com

It looks like all us film shooters are now "alternative photographers"!

Phil.

Last edited by gofour3; 06-07-2011 at 07:30 AM.
06-07-2011, 11:20 AM   #70
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QuoteOriginally posted by wildman Quote
Looks like I shouldn't give up my day job as a shameless digital hack.
The shots look really good but they (particularly the first two) have got digital and photoshop stamped all over them which is the complete antithesis of what film looks like
06-07-2011, 02:27 PM   #71
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QuoteOriginally posted by Vendee Quote
The shots look really good but they (particularly the first two) have got digital and photoshop stamped all over them which is the complete antithesis of what film looks like
OK. I realize that I started with an already PP file and did a BW conversion from there.
So went back to the original RAW and did more or less what I did on the cat pic.

Question:
Does this look, to your eye, not like film but simply more like film than the first one?

I'm simply trying to understand what folks mean when they refer to a "film look" - a very subjective term. I may have my own idea of what film looks like but it's been decades since I worked with it. My films of choice back then were Panatomic x and Tri x printed on Agfa semi gloss as I recall.

Thanks to all,

Last edited by wildman; 06-17-2011 at 11:15 AM.
06-07-2011, 02:39 PM   #72
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Yes, it does. But with your experience, why settle for imitation BW when you are capable of shooting the real thing?
06-07-2011, 02:51 PM   #73
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06-07-2011, 02:51 PM   #74
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QuoteOriginally posted by wildman Quote
Question:
Does this look, to your eye, not like film but simply more like film than the first one?
Absolutely. The first one looked like Duotone which you are not going to get in a true b&w film shot.

QuoteOriginally posted by wildman Quote
I'm simply trying to understand what folks mean when they refer to a "film look" - a very subjective term. I may have my own idea of what film looks like but it's been decades since I worked with it. My films of choice back then were Panatomic x and Tri x printed on Agfa semi gloss as I recall.

Thanks to all,
The other thing to consider is that all the fantastic film shots that are posted here in the SLR film threads have been scanned in and converted to digital format. Almost without exception, those shots will look a hundred times better when wet printed in the darkroom. I've wet printed quite a few shots that I thought were "average" from the scan but turned out to be pretty damned good on 16" x 12" Agfa paper
06-08-2011, 07:13 PM   #75
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Thanks for the comments. It helps me understand where you folks are coming from.

Back on topic a bit - I live in a rural county with just small farm towns but I did check out at the local drug stores and food stores for the availability of film. Out of 6 stores two carried film. All were some kind of color print film and were 135. That's about it in the whole county as far as I can tell.

Don't think I would get back into film again. But I would like to master a decent direct color digital to BW conversion through software.

For an old school type like me BW still has a lot of power. Sometimes color is just a distraction from the pure beauty of form alone. Perhaps film is dying but there will always be a place for the appropriate use of BW.

Gave up trying to do the BW conversion with canned software and decided to just trust my eye by manually adjusting channels etc as if it was a normal color file:

600mm at a small town parade a couple of summers ago. Taken on the old DL. She was across the street and about 60-70 feet away I think.

Last edited by wildman; 06-17-2011 at 11:15 AM.
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