Suggestions: Trip to Florence, Italy

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by panchromatic, Apr 8, 2005.

  1. panchromatic

    panchromatic Member

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    Ok Ladies and Gents,

    I am fortunate enough to be able to go on a trip to Florence, Italy with my school for a study abroad program. I will be there from June 1st, to July 1st so I will have lots of time for photography. I will be living in the city and will be studying Art History, and Italian.

    Now to the meat and potatoes, I will be shooting 35mm mostly black and white film in churches, outside at buildings and scenery and such. First i'm trying to decide:

    A: how many rolls to bring (30 days) I'm thinking that 2 rolls a day should be enough... opinons?
    B: I know since i'll be in many different places at different times of the day i'll be needing a wide selection of film speeds. Any opinions on what i should bring more of? (I usually shoot neopan 400, acros100, and delta 400, though i've been/going to be experimenting with panF and efke 25/50/100) Any recommendations?
    C: I've been told that there is a store that will be able to supply the chems i need for development and such so thats not a big worry.

    Ultimately i'd like to bring enough with me so i don't have to buy any film there (its cheaper to buy it here and ship it over)

    Also if anyone has any comments or suggestions in general please let me know, i'm really open to suggestions :smile:
     
  2. Thomas Bertilsson

    Thomas Bertilsson Subscriber

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    Don't experiment or take chances.

    I would suggest using the materials you're used to using. When photographing objects that you may never see again in your lifetime, don't take chances. Use your Neopan400, Acros100, and Delta400. Since you may have to pass your film through the scanning devices at airports, the Across100 is probably a good choice since it'll be less susceptible to problems with X-ray.
    I usually bring film with me in a ziploc bag, and hand it to the officers and ask for hand inspection. Usually they're pretty nice about it.

    Hope that helps,

    - Thom
     
  3. Ornello

    Ornello Inactive

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    I would not use more than two films, and probably just one: Neopan 400 or Delta 400.
     
  4. Neal

    Neal Subscriber

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    Dear Ryan,

    If it were me I would bring both 100 and 400 rated films I was experienced with. Further, only ones from the major manufacturers. Experiment when it doens't matter so much. A second body would make things easier.

    Don't forget your tripod. ;>)

    Neal Wydra
     
  5. Deckled Edge

    Deckled Edge Member

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    Ryan,
    Go ahead and forget your tripod. You will be forbidden to use it everywhere except city streets. Even the dirt in the Boboli Gardens is off limits for tripod use. Most of the low-light areas in monuments, museums, and churches forbid tripod use. For this reason, a 400 ASA film pushed to 800 is mandatory. Instead of a tripod, consider a beanbag. Rig a ball head to a walking staff with a rubber tip--you might just get away with it.
    It was not clear to me whether the Italians feared damage to their relics, or whether the Italian photographic lobby feared competition. In some areas you can apply for a permit for tripod use: a three page form in triplicate which will be approved within 3 months, with the necessary fees.
    Stick with two films. You know you are going to screw up and forget to change ASA on the meter. Screw ups increase as to the square of the number of film variations.
    Film is the cheapest thing on this trip, so take tons. It's a tourist town, and film scams are as prevalent as any other vendor scams. I would not trust buying film there, unless you find a very large specialty photography store. Possibly your lead on the chemistry will also sell fresh film. Just as possibly, it will be film you've never heard of.
    Remember that it will be MOBBED at that time of year, and pickpockets abound. Don't take more gear than you can keep track of.
    Save a free hand for gelato!
    Good luck!
     
  6. david b

    david b Member

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    I will be in Oaxaca for roughly the same time and I am planning on taking 150 rolls of film. 100 rolls of APX 100 and 50 rolls of Pan F+.

    I think I will even be taking about 40 or so rolls of Fuji NPS 160 color film.
     
  7. Claire Senft

    Claire Senft Member

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    For david B

    I hope that you both have wonderful trips. If 8 rolls of film a day proves inadequate you will have worn out your tripod.
     
  8. david b

    david b Member

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    Well, it is roughly 4 rolls a day.

    I have rented an apartment in Oaxaca and will have a place to develop my film.

    I can't wait.
     
  9. Paul Howell

    Paul Howell Member

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    Although I have not been in Italy in almost 20 years, I never had much trouble finding film, Kodak and the other brands are readily available. You can find a photo store in Florence though the internet and you can find what can be had at what price. but take more than you need. I agree that 400 ISO will give you the most flexibility. I would consider a C 41 back and white, you can shoot have the film developed (not printed) at a mimilab and take home negatives so you don't have to be concerned about X raying the exposed film, you can check on your work every day, you can tell a lot by the negatives. The bean bag and walking stick is a viable option that I have used with good results. Developing you negatives may work out if your host has no issues, but I would rather spend my time exploring rather than developing but each to his/her own.

    Sounds like a great trip.

    Paul