A little rambling on film, be they trustworthy companions or ‘new’ kids on the block.
Over the years I have tried any possible film I could find. I was determined to explore the (technical) qualities and possibilities of the films I loaded in my camera’s. To much dismay of my tutor(s), because if you would have a look at my ‘work’ over the years, there is no consistancy, at least not in ‘look’. But, I am happy I did this, because by now I have a few favorites, films I just cannot live without. A little more about them before I get to the ‘New’.
My absolute favorite film is Kodak Tri-X 400. This is an absolute no-brain film. Load it in any kind of camera, don’t bother too much about ISO settings or exposure values. This film has enormous exposure lattitude, strong contrast, and that beloved grain I have come to adore. If Kodak ever decides to stop producing this film, I will personally hold a funeral.
As far as color (slide) film goes, I must say the Fuji Astia would be my film of choice, especially for portrait photography. The color tones in this film are just marvelous. Unfortunately, I can not find a single roll of this anywhere. Or maybe Holland just drew the short straw in terms of stock.
And there’s of course Fujichrome Velvia. Mostly adopted for landscape photography, you should try this highly saturdated film for portraits. Amazing results! Thankfully the 100F film is still widely available.
Lastly, let’s not forget Kodachrome (64). I still have a pack in the fridge. Unfortunately no one in the world seems to be able to process this film properly, since on December 30th 2010 the last option we analogue-addicts had (Dwayne’s Photo in the US) left shut their facility down. What a sad day that was.
Then the ‘New’. I have noticed over the past 2-3 years that all kinds of distinct brands have come back, either being re-produced or simply re-started. I would like to share my thoughts and ask you for your opinion on a select few:
On August 16th, 2013, Japan Camera Hunter posted an article on new film from CineStill. Having read his post and all related links I could find, I am seriously interested in this very different film. Especially the sample pictures (some are below) appeal to me very, very much. An easy to push or pull 800 ISO, saturated and grainy color film, but apparently not as contrasty as the currently still available Kodak versions..who doesn’t want that? I want it! Does anyone already have experience with this particular film?
Some time ago I stumbled upon rolls of VERY expired Adox film. Most likely the results of this film will be disappointing (I haven’t used it yet), but still I got curious. I never heard of Adox. So when looking them up, I find there is newly made film available! But more than that, when I saw sample photographs, I was completely stunned, especially by their CMS 20 film. Such a fine grain and silver tone I have never seen yet. So again, does anyone have esperience with Adox film? If so, please comment!
Samples of CineStill (courtesey of their website)
Samples of Adox CMS 20 (courtesey of their website)