Dec 27 2009


Roll #7


PJ800 Ektapress. Reviews of this film warn of excessive grain, high contrast and washed out colors. I don’t know why I have a number of rolls of this stuff, but I do. And since I do, I’ll use it to shoot some Christmas lights, which are already contrasty and can easily be washed out looking, and people are probably starting to take them down now that Christmas is over. Yeah, I’m up for a challenge.

Dec 23 2009

FlashBack Gift Ideas


Need a last minute gift idea for that someone special? These babies are guaranteed for life! Get them the gift that just keeps on giving and giving!

Dec 20 2009

Results to Roll #6

Results to #6

Processing: Discount Pharmacy

Time: next day

Price: $2.75

Well, I realize the film is old so it might not have been the best thing to use if I really wanted quality night sky photos on negatives. And I know I carried those latent images around for a while.  Also, my new D700 is really nice, designed to “deliver breathtakingly rich image quality” with its 12.1 megapixel image sensor. But I don’t think I was prepared for just how much better the digital images are than the film.

I sort of copped out, and I took the roll to the discount pharmacy I had been to before. It was so inexpensive because there weren’t that many exposures on the roll. Also, for whatever reason, they didn’t print all of the negatives. They skipped over some of the more interesting cloud photos. I’m learning that’s a common problem when trusting your images to someone else.

Okay, well enough yammering. Let’s look at the images. Here is the first film image. Let me point out that there was some loss of quality here due to the relatively average scanner I’ve been using. I have been scanning the actual prints from the lab. But in this case, the prints were not that good in the first place.

sf1As you can see, the print was sort of “soft” and, to add insult to injury, this particular print actually has a nasty fanoog in the upper center. I have no idea what that is. If it were lint it should be white, not black. The quality of the printing is much less impressive than the last project I took to this lab.

sd1And here is the digital image. Amazing huh?  The streak near the tree line in both photos is regrettably an airplane, not a meteor.

sf2Here is a film shot of the horizonless sky. The stars are practically lost within the grain.

sd2And here is the digital image. Amazing huh?

Overall: I am stunned at the difference. Admittedly, a lot of credit must go to the new digital technology. My last camera, a D2Hs would not have produced this level of quality. Oh, and for the record, both the digital and film cameras were set to or loaded with ISO 400 and shot at 2.8, 30 second or more shutter, with nikon glass on both, often switching one lens between the two bodies for similar shots.

Dec 13 2009

Roll #6

Roll #6

Do you remember some weeks ago we were supposed to stay up late, go outside in the cold and watch the Leonid Meteor Shower? You know, the one where there were to be as many as 20 meteors per hour over North America? I took a short roll of Kodak 400 and loaded it into my trusty Nikon FM2 with a cable release. I also took my new digital Nikon D700 for the instant gratification of seeing photos of the bee-yoo-tee-ful meteors streaking across the sky.

Well, some friends and I stood out there in the cold for over 2 hours and we only saw about 2 or 3 meteors, and we got photos of none. We did take some lovely photos of the sparse clouds illuminated by the ambient light. We did get some photos of airplanes that we could lie and say were meteors. We did get silly and start writing the word “meteor” with a flashlight during our timed exposures, just so that we could say that we did indeed get a meteor photo.


Thing is, I’ve been carrying that roll of film around with me for weeks now. I’ve been looking for a place that processes film that I haven’t already been to. It seems that film processing centers are dwindling faster than I realized. Did you know that Kmart doesn’t process film? I went to a nearby, lesser known warehouse club and they don’t do it either. I guess I better get on the ball so I can see how the film images compare with the pretty new digital ones.

Dec 9 2009

FlashBack Sequence


Since we’re on the topic of sequence.  Not to be confused with sequins.