Jake Bouchard (@jbphto) from Old School Photo Lab issued a challenge recently. To paraphrase, “Everyone shoots sunsets. I want to see what the sun is setting ON.”
Here you go, Jake.
4/28 – Sunset in Deerfield, NH.
And the object. Nikon FM2, Kodak Ektachrome E100G cross processed.
And for good measure, here’s sunrise the next morning over Salem Harbor.
For those fond of Instagram, Photoshop, HDR and the like, I’d like to point out that none of these images have been post processed. This is the magic of modern film.
This is a little film geek-y, but please bear with me. The $100 darkroom included a shopping bag full of expired film. Some people like expired film for its unpredictability, but I’d never tried shooting any. The Tri-X 400 shouldn’t be too hard to handle, the Portra 160 might have some interesting colors, but the 12-year expired Tmax 3200 could be trouble. Internet wisdom tells me that faster films are subject to more degradation and fogging.
There is no formula. It’s all dependent on how long ago the film expired, how it has been stored, how you shoot it, how you develop it, and a bit of luck. After much reading I decided to try overexposing my Tmax by two stops (800ASA). Beth grabbed the Holga 135BC, I loaded up the Olympus 35RC, and we headed out to Maudslay State Park.
Most of my shots were junk, but I was able to salvage a few in post-processing. The results are very grainy and very cool.
The Mighty Merrimac
For those who care, development was in D76 for 13 1/2 minutes, per the standard instructions for Tmax 3200.
It’s been an interesting month. I’ve been shooting a lot of film, and I indulged in a bit of Gear Acquisition Syndrome on eBay. One of my new toys is an Olympus 35RC.
The 35RC is a pocket 35mm rangefinder manufactured in the 1970s. There is a detailed review here.
First impressions are of a nicely sized, nicely weighted camera. The aperture control ring is a bit small and difficult to handle, but the automatic mode makes it unnecessary to adjust it often. I had my doubts about the accuracy of the meter because of a non-standard replacement battery. It seemed to be overexposing in the house.
After a quick dusting, I loaded a test roll of 200ASA and headed out.
The meter seemed to behave outdoors, shooting close to sunny 16. The wind is smooth and quiet. The lack of a mirror makes the shutter release with a gentle click and no vibration. As this is my first rangefinder, focusing took a bit of experimentation. Beth and I shot most of a roll along the Topsfield Linear Common.
If the shots come out well, this one should figure high on my regular carry list. I’ll post a few once they are developed.
UPDATE: Highlights of the first roll are here.