Halloween Portraits

Discussion in 'Exposure Discussion' started by Bighead, Oct 17, 2006.

  1. Bighead

    Bighead Member

    Messages:
    471
    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2005
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    So, big costume party this year.. The host has made all kinds of crazy ceramic backdrops and has been working on the house for weeks now... I want to really take some good shots and maybe even set up a little portrait area.

    I am shooting B&W... Probably my 645 system... I think I want to use some Delta 3200, shot at 800 maybe. I want to use my Vivitar 285, probably on a tripod for the portraits and on a Custom Designs bracket for candid stuff. Maybe at 1/2 or 1/4 power to compensate for the faster film?? Anyway... I want some grain and I want a lot of contrast... Skreeching whites and very heavy blacks, but with some detail......... Its been awhile since I have developed my own film so I want to maybe do this lot myself so I can enhance some things...

    Anyone have any tips to obtain the look I am going for?? Am I on the right track at all??
     
  2. Will S

    Will S Member

    Messages:
    717
    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2004
    Location:
    Madison, Wis
    Shooter:
    8x10 Format
    I use polaroids at my Halloween parties. The kids always need instant gratification. Expired Type 57 mostly that I get from the local dealer.

    If I could afford it, I would get the sepia tone stuff, but it is very expensive.

    I've got a couple of skeletons to pose with this year. I want to try "ghost" shots too by turning off the flash and telling one of them to hold really still while the other one walks out of the frame after a couple of seconds. Or maybe use a torch to paint one of them but not the other.

    I'm using an old hot light hooked up to this machine that responds to sound to make lightning. You play a CD of thunder and it turns the light on and off...

    Best,

    Will
     
  3. Bighead

    Bighead Member

    Messages:
    471
    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2005
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Hmmmm. Maybe I need to bring the other tripod....... Do some 2 exposure shots..... One with a person, and one without, while I have a second person in for both....... Ghost shots.... Good idea..... Anyone know how to hold the film advance on a Pentax 645? Double exposure?

    Also, yeah, I will be printing on some warm tone stuff and probably doing some extra toning to give more warmth.....
     
  4. Bighead

    Bighead Member

    Messages:
    471
    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2005
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    anyone?
     
  5. SuzanneR

    SuzanneR Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Messages:
    5,861
    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2004
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Not sure you should use flash with Delta 3200... it's great stuff for low light, candlelight, flashlights held up to faces from below! With a flash on camera, I'm not sure that grain structure will look as attractive as it does in low light. I would stick to a 100 speed or 400 speed film for that, maybe use a slow shutter with a rear curtain pop of the flash to create some "ghost" like images.

    Sounds like fun!
     
  6. Bighead

    Bighead Member

    Messages:
    471
    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2005
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Ha ha... I'm not sure "attractive" is the look I am going for..... I don't have anything to compare to but I am wanting these to be slightly blown out. I want some grain as well..... I want decent negatives to print with but I want lots of contrast, grain and I will probably be adding some texture with solarization, printing through scratched glass. Some warm toning and drips and runs with spot toner, etc......... Also, the flash will be dialed down and shot about a foot or so above the camera, also off camera, on a tripod.... Setting the flash at 400iso, but dialing it down to 1/2 or 1/4....... I will certainly use your ideas as well.....
     
  7. SuzanneR

    SuzanneR Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Messages:
    5,861
    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2004
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I'm looking forward to seeing your images, and don't forget, you can always give tri-x a major, say, 4 stop push for "fun with grain"!! :D

    Can you test a few rolls ahead of time, just to see how to get the look you are after? I just find when things get too "bright" with the Delta 3200 (bright sun, bright light) it can get blocked up on the neg, and not in a good way, but with all the darkroom stuff you are planning, it really may not matter which film you choose! :tongue:

    No matter what you decide to do... post the results!
     
  8. donbga

    donbga Member

    Messages:
    2,084
    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2003
    Shooter:
    Large Format Pan
    Polaroid Portraits

    For several years I made portraits of the trick or treaters that came to my door on Halloween using a Polaroid 600 camera. I gave the print to the trick or treater with some candy.

    This year they will need to settle for candy since my camera got smashed recently.
     
  9. Bighead

    Bighead Member

    Messages:
    471
    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2005
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Ouch!! That blows.....

    I really want to shoot some poloroid film....... 559 or whatever the film is that makes a print and a neg....
     
  10. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Messages:
    17,919
    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2002
    Location:
    Honolulu, Ha
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    Medium format P/N 665 has been discontinued, so get it while you can. When it runs out, if you want a Polaroid neg, you'll need to use 4x5" Type 55.
     
  11. Bighead

    Bighead Member

    Messages:
    471
    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2005
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    I guess I am now in the market for a 4x5....... Anyone?? Actually, please don't..... I don't need any temptations right now.....

    So, back to my 3200 thing.... Another major reason why I want to use it is because I have about 40 rolls of it... But I also have some Delta 400... Would it be better to push it 2 stops, and use a flash to get that contrasty, grainy feel or should I just take the chance with the 3200?? Also, what about developing?? Currently, my school is using Dectol... Should I use D76 instead?? How should I develop this stuff?

    Suzanne, I will certainly post some results....
     
  12. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Messages:
    17,919
    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2002
    Location:
    Honolulu, Ha
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    Here are some Halloween shots I made a couple of years ago--

    http://www.echonyc.com/~goldfarb/halloween/

    Click the image to cycle to the next one. There are about half a dozen.

    I did these in 4x5" handheld with Linhof Tech V, 210/5.6 Symmar convertible mostly at f:8 (except Le Pescadou, which was f:5.6, since I was across a wide avenue), with a Norman 200C/GVI Vari-Strobe flash setup using a plain 5" reflector, Efke PL100 rated at 200 in Acufine. I was going for the Weegee look. If you want a grainier, contrastier version of the same, a smaller format and faster film should do it--try Tri-X rated at 1600 (underexposed, overdeveloped).
     
  13. Bighead

    Bighead Member

    Messages:
    471
    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2005
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Thats not a bad idea either....... Maybe I will use 35mm to get the grain I want..... Its been awhile since I've used one of the AE-1's too.......