There is a LOT that I love about digital. I wont go over that. What I hate is the massing of digital files on a hard drive rather than negatives and prints in an album. Now that I live overseas, I print almost nothing. Back in the US I spent hundreds of dollars every few months on ink cartridges. Maybe if I printed more of my digital files, I would not want to shoot film again.
Originally Posted by Mark Minard
On the other hand, I LOVE a well made piece of equipment and can see that shooting the Fuji GF670 would be a wonderful experience. It would be slower than digital, which also I would like. The smooth focusing glass, the small, compact folder. Just perfect for the travel photography that I shoot most of the time.
I have never owned a full frame digital camera before, only shooting with APS-C. So there is some frustrations with the lenses acting so different from my previous film shooting. Part of me thinks that shooting with the D700/800 would be a nice experience. Maybe add a nice Zeiss 50mm f/1.4 to complete the well engineered feeling.
That's off the top of my head.....
Can you share your processing experiences?
Originally Posted by BrianShaw
Buy the medium format camera you want! I mean, this is a site for film users, and I can't promote digital. Sure, digital is easy, but if photography was supposed to be easy, Gene Smith wouldn't have called his class "The Art of Photography Made Difficult."
Seriously, you do say that there are a few pro labs left where you live - why not use them? The ones that are left are probably very good, or they wouldn't have survived. And how many labs do you really need? I only use one lab for my work.
Processing film is not difficult. I process my own black & white all the time. If you can get your hands on some chemicals, you'll be souping in no time.
However professional the laboratory is, after one learns how to do it processing at home becomes easier, less risky and yields better quality*. Besides, if you want to go on with film sooner or later you have to learn developing by yourself, so why not doing it now.
It's much easier than commonly thought. You begin with B&W, then you try some C-41.
E-6 is a bit more critical because you have to keep a stable temperature for around 7 minutes. C-41 has a shorter treatment time and it is easy to produce consistent results without any special device.
* You can use fresh chemicals with one-shot dilutions, while at the lab the chemicals will last a long time, being "regenerated" and corrected in various ways, but nothing beats one-shot chemicals (which you can actually use twice).
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Well, I am a Master degreed Chemist who works with chemicals all day long. I guess doing it at home wouldnt be so bad. But color is my main focus and that is more complicated than black and white.
Actually, C-41 really isn't any more complicated than B&W. I'd say given the slightly different considerations in developing each, they're about the same. C-41 just looks more problematic. But it's actually easy and so very rewarding!
Sure. 1 year ago I would take my film -- any film except 4x5 C41 -- to a lab that was 3 miles away and it would get processed/printed to my specs at a good price and at acceptable quality. Everything except 120 prints had an overnight (or sooner) turnaround. 120 prints took 48 hours.
Originally Posted by RattyMouse
Now I take 35mm C41 to Costco and process cheap, quick, and at acceptable quality.
Now I mail 120 color and B&W to a lab and process at twice the prior price, at acceptable quality, but have to plan for a 4 or 5 day turnaround.
I still working an option for 4x5. 4x5 E6 could go to a lab 30 miles away (1 to 2 hour drive); 4x5 C41 could go to a lab 15 miles away (1 hour drive), and 4x5 B&W could go to a mailorder place I have no experience with.
p.s. Yes, I know I could process at home, etc, etc.
go the next obvious step and process yourself. for film processing you can get away wiyhout a full darkroom, and i feel that my results are better than from any lab ,i know.
Originally Posted by Terry Christian
Many say beginners should start with b&w developing then move on to color. In my opinion it is the other way around. You should start with color developing as color is the most common media, and standardized, then learn b&w developing. B&W is much more involved with all its different developers, times, dilutions, papers, contrast control, zone system, etc.