HOW TO SELECT FILM/CAMERA FOR THIS AESTHETIC?

Discussion in 'Color: Film, Paper, and Chemistry' started by court2407, Mar 14, 2011.

  1. court2407

    court2407 Member

    Messages:
    1
    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2011
    Shooter:
    Plastic Cameras
    Dear APUGS,

    I am posting this article as I need assistance in selecting a film/camera for a particular aesthetic. I am a third year student at a professional photographic college. I have extensively used digital slr's, 5"4 cameras, studios and have a collection of plastic cameras and old polaroid cameras.

    I also have extensive experience in photoshop. The thing is, I am drawn to the raw aesthetic of film and havent had to much of an education in this realm of photography. Unfortunately, my college asserts that digital is the way of the future, therefore doesn't educate us about film. Some of my favourite photographers are Todd Hido, Stephen Shore, William Eggleston and Dash snow.

    I am looking for find a film with a similar aesthetic to the colours of polaroid 600 film. I love the subdued warm colours and retro 70's vibe it has.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Please refer to these images.

    Can anyone please recommend a film with a similar colour pallette to these images? Are these colours in the film, or to do with the processing? So far none of my teachers have been much help.

    Courtney
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 15, 2011
  2. rawhead

    rawhead Subscriber

    Messages:
    573
    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2009
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
  3. Paul Green

    Paul Green Member

    Messages:
    156
    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2007
    Location:
    Hampshire UK
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    I second rawhead's suggestion, also consider over exposing it.
     
  4. SuzanneR

    SuzanneR Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Messages:
    5,888
    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2004
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I've moved this post to the color film forum, as it's not an article, but a question about film. Also, it's not entirely appropriate to post pictures that are copyrighted to others... a link to the examples would be better.
     
  5. Greg Davis

    Greg Davis Member

    Messages:
    2,057
    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2004
    Location:
    Nicholasvill
    Shooter:
    8x10 Format
    Stephen Shore shot those using an 8x10 Deardorff camera and a 305 G-Claron lens on Kodak color negative film, then printed them on Kodak paper possibly on RA-4, however I am not sure if that process was in use then. He teaches at Bard College and will answer your question if you email him directly through his school email address.

    Eggelston uses the dye transfer process for printing and achieves his colors that way. Todd Hido will answer your email, too. Try contacting him through his website. He shoots color negative film, though I don't know which brand. They are printed for him, most likely by lightjet or inkjet after scanning.
     
  6. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

    Messages:
    19,972
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2003
    Location:
    local
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    i have gotten images like this by using
    color negative film ( expired ) and over exposing it
    but greg's right, email is easy ... and not
    a bunch of people's opinions
     
  7. jd callow

    jd callow Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Messages:
    8,003
    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2003
    Location:
    Milan
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    The palette looks to b kodak. The first image looks very over exposed and slightly under developed (3 stops and 1 stop). the highway shot looks to be a shitty lens image film would be immaterial. If I were to guess the beach image looks to be portra 160vc fully exposed -- ei of ~80. The last image looks like NPS or possibly 160nc.
     
  8. holmburgers

    holmburgers Member

    Messages:
    4,423
    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2009
    Location:
    Rochester NY
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    The last two images are high quality, ultra-sharp photographs. Any quality camera (are those MF??) can do that with good color film. The first two are, like others have said, probably some cheapo camera with a crappy lens and expired film.

    Go to goodwill, get a camera, and start shooting! There's more to this "look" than equipment.
     
  9. Shadowtracker

    Shadowtracker Member

    Messages:
    266
    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2010
    Location:
    St. Louis
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    And Tell your School....

    Also, tell your school "Film Is NOT Dead!" and that much about photography in general is learned by developing/printing film.

    My skills are much improved as a result of taking film classes in b&w and in color (they teach the printing of color, and this has taught me quite a lot about what to look for and how to control it; they don't teach developing color film because the temperature controls are so tight and that's not realistic in a community college).
     
  10. jp498

    jp498 Member

    Messages:
    1,467
    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2009
    Location:
    Owls Head ME
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    You can do some retro aesthetic stuff using fuji instant film, with variation in color/contrast provided by disobeying the time suggested for peeling it apart, and/or buying expired.
     
  11. jp498

    jp498 Member

    Messages:
    1,467
    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2009
    Location:
    Owls Head ME
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Here's an example of the potential retro look of fuji instant. Speed graphic's lens provides the lack of depth of field.

    [​IMG]

    Replace the child with a girl dressed in brown corduroy leaning on a babyfood colored volvo p1800es and you're hitting retro on all cylinders.
     
  12. holmburgers

    holmburgers Member

    Messages:
    4,423
    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2009
    Location:
    Rochester NY
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    :laugh:
     
  13. cs_foto

    cs_foto Member

    Messages:
    34
    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2009
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Are you really experimenting with film? start trying as many different emultions (positive/negative) as you can then you will see which one leads you to where you want to go.

    From your examples I don't believe you are looking to replicate those images, you are just bothered to be so far away from them: maybe its because you keep shooting digital?
     
  14. Sponsored Ad
  15. nworth

    nworth Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,191
    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2005
    Location:
    Los Alamos,
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    The top and bottom photos benefit from high contrast. The bottom one can benefit from high saturation as well. Something like Kodak Ektar 100 would work decently. The other two are more ordinary, and would benefit from a professional film like Kodak Portra. In general, an amateur film like Kodak Gold 200 would be a good compromise for all.
     
  16. CGW

    CGW Member

    Messages:
    2,797
    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2010
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    This look is largely achieved now in digital post-production. With film, it's hit-or-miss with no combination of film, processing or gear assuring immediate, consistent results. Jonathan Leder is getting this and other vintage looks with film--purportedly with no digital processing--at Jacques magazine. I'd try current films with chalky, dialed down saturation and contrast like Fuji 400H and rate it at ISO100 for starters or just over-expose the bejessus out of it. I had some luck with Kodak's now-departed E200 slide film which was almost pallid compared to other Ektachrome materials. I'd avoid consumer C41 films which tend toward ramped-up saturation and contrast. It'll be a fishing trip but worth it if you can nail a few.
     
  17. TimVance

    TimVance Member

    Messages:
    13
    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2007
    Location:
    Florida
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    The second shot is from Ryan Mcginley http://ryanmcginley.com/

    For that shot he used a yashica t4 and what looks like cheap consumer film.
     
  18. captainbedworthy

    captainbedworthy Member

    Messages:
    6
    Joined:
    May 16, 2010
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Not surprised.
    The shots, which are very typical of a point and shoot camera like the top two are also two or more stops overexposed, are on a cheap C41 stock like Kodak Gold or maybe a store branded film (Ritz/CVS etc.)
    The streakers show a shutter lagging PS camera (middle overexposed, edges fine). Think CHEAPO.
    You should get your flea-market shoes on and look for anything under a buck. Buy several. Get some 12 shot rolls and try out some shots on bright days, some right into the sun, and some while running, etc.

    A durable tool for this is the Pentax WR-90, which can be had for cheap. It may be too good a lens though. Reloading a disposable works too.
    Good luck.
     
  19. holmburgers

    holmburgers Member

    Messages:
    4,423
    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2009
    Location:
    Rochester NY
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I wonder if the original OP vanished from Earth?

    NO BUT SERIOUSLY, this thread is still in the "Articles" section, where it does not belong. Strangely, when you click on it it takes you to this thread, which is also (simultaneously?) in the forums.

    I've already hit the ! triangle and mentioned this but nothing happened. It doesn't belong in the articles section, even if it does link straight to the thread. It's very odd, please hit the ! triangle and bring this to the attention of the moderators and let's preserve the sanctity of our articles section!!

    :D
     
  20. bblhed

    bblhed Member

    Messages:
    601
    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2010
    Location:
    North Americ
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I vote for Kodak Gold 200.
     
  21. jon

    jon Member

    Messages:
    64
    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2005
    Location:
    Toronto
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    What about the PX680 from the Impossible Project?
     
  22. Sosha

    Sosha Member

    Messages:
    8
    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2011
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Shame that the teachers are/have not taught them about film. I agree with the OP that film does have a distinct quality to it. I guess that's why we're on a film forum.... Even looking at those photographs, there is a certain charm in them. I remember when I first started my photo course back in college. Our first project was learning about the film camera and there was no digital involved. I definitely didn't appreciate it then but as time came closer to today, film started to grow on me. Its not to the point that I find myself only using digital for certain specific things...

    I just find it a bit unfortunate that while getting out of uni with £20,000 worth of debt (min you, I'm only 19 and havent been through it myself) that they're teachers have only taught them digital. No doubt that the future is digital, but that doesn't mean that people aren't happy with how things once were,and want to continue with their passion for film in the modern day.
     
  23. williamkazak

    williamkazak Member

    Messages:
    39
    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2006
    Location:
    Lansing, Ill
    Shooter:
    35mm
    I am not so sure what my film background has done for me as I am here now but it has gotten me here I will say that. The new photographers can learn so quickly on DSLR's but do they realize what there is to learn? Are they learning lighting, exposure, emotional captures, fill flash techniques? Are they learning marketing and how to make money to survive? Shooting multiple pics and looking at the immediate results does not necessarily mean that they see these essential things.
    I am putting my B&W darkroom together again, after looking at some of my 11x14 model pics from the studio that I used to work at in Chicago in the 80's. Why give up all of the lessons learned there as I perfected my lighting and processing techniques?
     
  24. Sirius Glass

    Sirius Glass Subscriber

    Messages:
    20,590
    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2007
    Location:
    Southern California
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Welcome to APUG!

    I echo the choice Kodak Gold 200.

    Do not let the school control your life choices. In the past I was an Electrical Engineering & Computer Science professor for a decade and there is some truth in
    Those that can, do​
    Those that can't, teach​
    Those that can't teach, teach others to teach
     
  25. nworth

    nworth Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,191
    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2005
    Location:
    Los Alamos,
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    You specifically asked for softer colors and not too much contrast. Kodak Portra 160NC used to be the choice for this sort of thing. The new Portra 160 has somewhat more intense colors, but it still may work for you. Fuji Astia, a transparency film, was outstanding at this sort of thing (a shock for a transparency film), but I'm not sure of its current availability.
     
  26. EASmithV

    EASmithV Member

    Messages:
    1,925
    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2008
    Location:
    Maryland
    Shooter:
    Multi Format

    pfft, i do it in a sink with a fish tank heater