Shooting Slide film???
I have almost decided to just shoot B&W with film , I think B&W film is better, and shoot color with the forbidden digital. I am not trying to start an argument about a digital vs. analogue thing. I just wondered if properly exposed slide film produces as good a color shot as a good digital DSLR?
Again this is just meant to be a simple question and not one of those battles.
One of the reasons I ask this is when I look at really good shots on Velvia for example, the color looks smooth and rich to me. Is that just me wanting slide film to look better or is there some truth to my observation?
I have started using the digitals for shots for charities and other things like birthday parties, etc.
If I am working on something special I use slide film. To me everything turns out much better than digital has been able to produce for me.
I'm shooting slide film lately in 35mm, but having difficulty in getting sharp scans from from my Canon 9000F. I see the future of film in B&W, so I developed my first B&W recently.
From what I have seen a 'damn good' projected digital image will not even come close to a 'good' slide film. They (digital) all seem to lack 'punch' and I have yet to see a really sharp one. It may be the temptation is to crop too much for the projector to do it justice.
In the club I used to be in, there was a lady who produced the most amazing colour slides taken on the local beaches around dawn with punchy vibrant colours that jumped out at you. (She wasn't using Velvia either) She went over to digital and the quality just slumped and I would have put them with the 'Also rans'.
Colour prints may be a different matter, there are so many variables when you put a digital image through a computer/Adobe etc, but with printing colour film you are quite limited with what the average person can get a way with. Colour saturation can be limiting, colour balance is not the easiest thing to get right first time (or even second). Contrast is fixed, if the picture was taken on a dull day that's what comes out in the print, with very little possibility to alter it. It is a pity that different contrast colour papers were never available that would have made all the difference (My opinion).
I used to use a Nikon Scanner and I found that to get a large enough file to make an A3 print I had to scan at a very high DPI. I was able to get the sharpness I needed but that also exaggerated the grain. I could use the grain tool to suppress this but that also knocked off the 'edge' in the sharpness and you finished up going around in circles. It was even worse with B&W. This is one of the main reason I returned to film almost full time.
Since slide film is either for projecting or scanning nowadays, I'd say that projected it blasts even a 24mp camera away in terms of image quality on a screen, in terms of printing, since Ciba and Ilfochrome are gone, you're limited to scanning and inkjet prints. For 35mm, that's a lot of work and not really worth it, but I still shoot slides and scan with 6x7 and 4x5 and compared to our 16mp Nikon, the Nikon doesn't come close (and that's with great lenses). Something about the contrast, the hues, the sharpness....it's hard to beat until you drop a couple g's on digital equipment.
They are very different things, but like I said, if you plan on sharing via projection, shoot slide and blow everyone away (if 35mm). In larger sizes, it's well worth the price.
In my film cameras (the newest one is from 1951) I shoot about 95% b&w film, mostly because I want the wide dynamic range. I do shoot some Portra 400 color film too. For most color work I'm using a Nikon DSLR. With my vintage cameras I'm after a classic look, and most always that involves b&w for me.
Kent in SD
You should definitely give slide a try. I started around 2009 and wished that I had started years before then! Try Provia 100F or Velvia 100.
The reason I like slides so much is because looking at them is like looking through a window right at the past. Everything just looks sooo real!
I think that slide film looks better because it has greater tonal gradation and wider tonal range than digital.
For the last 2-3 years I have been shooting almost exclusively B&W, slowly learning to take control of the image from beginning to end. Occasionally a little Portra or the Leica v-lux for color. Just last night I stayed up later than I should, with the loupe and light box, going over some 3-8 year old slides from my love affair with Velvia. Most of these didn't impress me all that much at the time, but I was shocked at the nearly 3D detail and how the colors leaped off the film. Digital is easy and gives nice, accurate color, but it just doesn't measure up in image quality. It makes me want to drag out Mom's old projector to see them at life size.
I came to that same conclusion regarding color a while ago, and my commitment to silver printing is absolute. For me, it is a matter of process. If you aren't developing and printing yourself, I see little, if any value to staying with film (color or B/W). How will you show your work – on the internet (that's digital)? Comparing Velveeta color to digital isn't much of an aesthetic comparison for me. Sure, it might be "smoother", but so what? You gotta ask yourself one question: Whatcha gonna do with it?