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  1. #11
    rbarker's Avatar
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    Instead of thinking film choice first, I'd suggest thinking in reverse. That is, consider what the final product will be (the yearbook), what its requirements are (probably B&W printing, moderate contrast), and what you want the images to look like. Then, consider what "style" of images you want.

    While you (or the yearbook staffers) could shoot existing light with a high-speed film and a fast lens (like one would shoot a stage show), much of the ambiance of the colored lighting will be lost. Additionally, even with fast film and a fast lens, there is a strong likelihood that many of the subjects will be blurred (they will be dancing while the camera is steady), giving a more "artistic" treatment of the event. With this choice, I'd concur with the suggestion of using Delta 3200 rated at 1600. I'd meter highlights and let the shadows go dark.

    The other alternative would be to shoot it like a wedding reception, using flash, so the individuals are lighted well, and recognizable. If using flash, a "normal" speed film and "normal" processing would work just fine.
    [COLOR=SlateGray]"You can't depend on your eyes if your imagination is out of focus." -Mark Twain[/COLOR]

    Ralph Barker
    Rio Rancho, NM

  2. #12
    Donald Qualls's Avatar
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    For "available darkness", I've had very good results with Tri-X (mine is old, expired TX, but fresh 400TX should work the same or better) exposed at EI 3200 and given a double cycle in Diafine. Be sure to give a thorough water wash between the Bath B and second Bath A, and it does no harm to increase the Bath A time on the second cycle, since the film is already wet and may take longer to soak up the developer. I gave five minutes in each bath on the second cycle, and got very nice, normal looking negatives.

    Alternately, you can expose 400TX at EI 5000 and develop for fifteen minutes (with vigorous agitation every 30 seconds) in a "super soup" composed of:

    Dektol 1+9, to which is added
    1 ml HC-110 syrup per ounce
    1 g ascorbic acid per 8 ounces
    1/2 tsp washing soda per 8 ounces

    I see little reason to spend money on the so-called 1600 and 3200 speed films (all actually ISO 800-1000) when Tri-X works so well with extreme pushes.
    Photography has always fascinated me -- as a child, simply for the magic of capturing an image onto glossy paper with a little box, but as an adult because of the unique juxtaposition of science and art -- the physics of optics, the mechanics of the camera, the chemistry of film and developer, alongside the art in seeing, composing, exposing, processing and printing.

  3. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by Quinten
    For Black and white I would concider neopan 1600 since it is great with flash, I am not sure how these other films are with flash but flash speeds can be really short and not all films are great with that. I would at least try a roll with the flash on before the big night.

    In case you use colour there are some really good 800asa colour films.

    Above that (but I am sure you knew it already,) try to fix a fast lens that's some extra ambient light for free. And tell your school they can create great athmosphere without it being really dark, it just needs some attention to the light in the room if they want good pictures.

    Best of luck!
    There is a really good Fuji colour negative film at 1600asa. I used it for an evening airshow and managed to get a good shot of a Hawker Hunter jet when the light was fading badly. The telephoto at its maximum meant that the aperture was f6.3 and the speed was still high enough for a jet flying at about 60 degrees to the camera so it should cope with dancefloor conditions quite well depending on the level of available light.

    I took shots at the evening disco after a wedding with Delta 400 and a dedicated Pentax flash set to the same wide angle as the lens,28mm, and was pleasantly surprised with the results. All faces and actions clear with enough background picked up as well. I used bounce flash off what was probably at least a 12 foot ceiling. This avoided the distraction of the flash for those being photographed. Of course had this been a school asembly hall or gym with very high ceilings then it wouldn't have worked.

    Pentaxuser

  4. #14
    htmlguru4242's Avatar
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    Thanks for the info. I'll have to consider exactly what to use here.

    I hope that I get to do the shooting, but if I don't I'll have to lend my camera and the film to a yearbook person and have them do it (aargh). I'll see how stuff comes out.

    And, to Donald, how does Tri-X in "super soup" (great name) come out; do you have any examples?

  5. #15
    Donald Qualls's Avatar
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    I don't have any of the 35 mm Tri-X that was intentionally shot at this EI scanned -- it was all constellation images, 20 second exposures hoping to get more sky depth than would be the case at EI 400 -- but I do have a scan of the original, first TXT negative I did with this super soup. This was accidentally loaded backward in the film sheath, so exposed through the antihalation layer on the base side, which gives a working EI of about 16-25, but still metered at EI 320; after the above process, it prints with normal to slightly hard filtering (that is, the negative has about normal contrast).

    The attached is scanned from the print, but the negative scan is very similar.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Low Water.jpg  
    Photography has always fascinated me -- as a child, simply for the magic of capturing an image onto glossy paper with a little box, but as an adult because of the unique juxtaposition of science and art -- the physics of optics, the mechanics of the camera, the chemistry of film and developer, alongside the art in seeing, composing, exposing, processing and printing.

  6. #16

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    Kodak TMax P3200 (TMZ) is made for this sort of thing. It can be easily pushed to 6400 and even higher with a loss in quality. Normally, it's push processed to the 3200 speed, like the Ilford Delta 3200. Best quality is at about 1600. Most people who have tried both feel that TMZ is more versatile and produces a somewhat better image than Delta 3200. One disadvantage is that it is only available in 35mm. If you can work in a larger format, the Ilford Delta 3200 or the Rollei R3 may have the advantage.

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