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Thread: Various question re: film

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    Ausphotography Regular swifty's Avatar
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    Various question re: film

    In preparation of receiving me film cam, I've been reading up on the whole analogue shooting thing. Its weird cos up until high school we always had a 135 film P&S camera but its been digital ever since and I've realised I know next to nothing about analogue shooting. Anyways.. so here are just some random questions I have in regards to film that I'm confused about.

    1. E6 is colour slide film and C41 is colour print film right?
    Does chromogenic mean it is a slide film that can be processed using C41 processes?
    So what do BW films fall under? As I understand it, most BW films are print but the process of developing BW film is different (neither E6 or C41) but there are some chromogenic BW films that you can develop with C41 process?
    Do you get a BW negatives after it has been developed? How bout Chromogenic film.. still get a BW negative?
    So what is BW developing called? Is there a name like E6 or C41?
    What does Panchromatic mean?
    I'll ignore the chromes for now cos its doing my head in.

    2. Unexposed film and exposed but undeveloped film can't be packed in checked-in luggage but ok for carry on? But try to avoid too many passes through the airport x-ray scanner or it may fog, right?
    Above what speed of film is it risky to take through an x-ray scanner?
    Are there other factors like types of film that are more sensitive through airport scanners?
    Do you put film in any special canisters when putting through airport scanners or it doesn't matter?
    As far as I know, it is quite safe to buy/send film by mail.

    3. After film is developed (either slide or print negatives), what is the best way to obtain a print?
    To ask them to scan and print from file? (seems easier but do you loose some of the analogue-ness about the print since it has been digitized)
    or
    Print from the slide or print negatives.

    4. What are good places to develop film in Sydney.

    5. I live in a 1 bedroom apartment, will my gf kill me if I want to try and develop my own BW film in the bathroom?
    5a. If not, where can I learn to develop BW film? The only course I know of is at ACP but that course is run on a weeknight but I usually work late... doh!!

    6. What's a good place to buy film in Sydney or online. I've had recommendations for Fotoriesel.

    7. When you push/pull film, you just set your ISO differently to what the film is rated at and then u ask the lab to compensate?
    If so, do you guys just mark on the film canister afterwards +2 stops or something so you'll remember which roll of film you pushed and to what extent.

    I've got heaps more questions but I'll stop there for now cos I think there's already too much above.
    Cheers
    Nikon FX

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    1. E6 is colour slide film and C41 is colour print film right?
    Yes
    So what do BW films fall under?
    B&W
    As I understand it, most BW films are print but the process of developing BW film is different (neither E6 or C41) but there are some chromogenic BW films that you can develop with C41 process?
    Don't think so but you can develop C41 and slide films with B&W process
    So what is BW developing called? Is there a name like E6 or C41?
    B&W
    What does Panchromatic mean?
    B&W film sensitive to all wavelengths of light

    2. Unexposed film and exposed but undeveloped film can't be packed in checked-in luggage but ok for carry on? But try to avoid too many passes through the airport x-ray scanner or it may fog, right?
    You're safe as long as its under 400asa. Over is risky but they will guarantee that you will be fine
    Above what speed of film is it risky to take through an x-ray scanner?
    boxed 3200asa film is risky but its usually just 1000asa in reality so ???
    Do you put film in any special canisters when putting through airport scanners or it doesn't matter?
    I wouldn't, any X-Ray resistant protection will just raise suspicion and the crew will pound it with more x-rays to see through.

    3. After film is developed (either slide or print negatives), what is the best way to obtain a print?
    Scan and Print or Enlarge optically
    Print from the slide or print negatives.
    DO THIS!

    5. I live in a 1 bedroom apartment, will my gf kill me if I want to try and develop my own BW film in the bathroom?
    No, bare minimum you just need two bottles of chemicals (dev and fix) a tank and some clips

    6. What's a good place to buy film in Sydney or online. I've had recommendations for Fotoriesel.
    Vanbar, Ebay, B&H, Freestyle, Les Porter......Les Porter is my new favorite supplier

    7. When you push/pull film, you just set your ISO differently to what the film is rated at and then u ask the lab to compensate?
    Within limits, the lab will charge more though - usually $10 a stop

    If so, do you guys just mark on the film canister afterwards +2 stops or something so you'll remember which roll of film you pushed and to what extent.
    Well you can change your exposure index of a 400asa film
    EI: Shoot at 320 - dev at 400
    Or push the film
    Push: Shoot at 1600 - dev at 1600


    Best ask APUG if you want some really detailed results.
    Last edited by Krzys; 05-09-2009 at 11:14am.

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    Good answers from Krzys

    In addition, with black and white film, I rarely shoot at box speed. This partly has to do with the developers that I use. For example, Ilfor HP5+ is a box speed ASA400 film, but pushes very nicely to 800 and 1600, even higher. The payoff is generally higher contrast and more pronounced grain (actually clouds of grain, as grain is much smaller than say a pixel on a Digital Camera). Depends on the look you want. Some people want minimal grain, others like big fat grain, but one thing is for sure..grain/noise creates the impression of sharpness and is required in all images.

    Black and white is very forgiving and easy to do at home, although the more proficient you get, the more you will want to experiment and push the boundries. Thus more gear, more space. Your girlfriend may want to kill you, but it will likely creep up on you slowly. Don't say I didn't warn you.

    Chrome film has a beautiful look and scans very easily. You will have to try it for yourself, but it gives a look that I cannot recreate with print film/PS. It is not very forgiving however.

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    Wow.. that was quick.
    I can always rely on you two, Krzys and Tom for good information.

    I'm clear on questions 2-7 now.

    Now with parts of question 1:
    What is chromogenic film then and how does it differ to normal film?
    eg. Kodak BW400CN is BW film but developed with C41 (colour) process.

    This will sound really silly but I'm gonna ask anyways. With anything other than colour slides, you get the inverted image (not as in upside down but opposite colour or tones) on the negative film after developing it, don't you?
    I have never seen BW negatives before. Is there a brown tinge to it like negative colour film?
    And being a negative, all the dark tones and light tones are inverted?
    When you scan the BW negative, does the scanner automatically invert the tones back to normal/positive? And if there is that brown tinge to it, then how do you get rid of it?

    Some BW images have a colour cast or tinge to it. Not necessary sepia toning (I don't actually know what sepia is other than what digital supposedly make it look like) but sometimes there is that light off-white colour cast to a BW image. What is that?


    OH.. and any recommendations to where to learn BW processing?

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    Now with parts of question 1:
    What is chromogenic film then and how does it differ to normal film?
    No idea
    eg. Kodak BW400CN is BW film but developed with C41 (colour) process.
    Id say its just color film but the lab desaturates it Ive never liked it - dont care for it/what it really is

    This will sound really silly but I'm gonna ask anyways. With anything other than colour slides, you get the inverted image (not as in upside down but opposite colour or tones) on the negative film after developing it, don't you?
    There is B&W slide film - Agfa Scala, but yes all negatives are inverted
    I have never seen BW negatives before. Is there a brown tinge to it like negative colour film?
    Sometimes there is a purple tinge, sometimes yellow or brown - but very light and not muddy orange like c41. If you do the process correctly with fresh chems and a good wash the negs should be a transparent grey

    Here is what good negs should look like (courtesy of a friend's blog) http://kenshukan.net/john/archives/2...pment-methods/ and http://kenshukan.net/john/archives/2...ints-charming/ (Both 2nd picture)

    And being a negative, all the dark tones and light tones are inverted?
    Yes
    When you scan the BW negative, does the scanner automatically invert the tones back to normal/positive?
    Yes
    And if there is that brown tinge to it, then how do you get rid of it?
    As long as you have fixed and washed correctly do not worry about the tinge of a B&W negative, it may add to the density a little but otherwise it is completely irrelevant

    Some BW images have a colour cast or tinge to it. Not necessary sepia toning (I don't actually know what sepia is other than what digital supposedly make it look like) but sometimes there is that light off-white colour cast to a BW image. What is that?
    Selenium or blue toned paper? Or maybe just added in post processing on a computer


    OH.. and any recommendations to where to learn BW processing?
    Lurk APUG and ask questions there - most general internet tutorials are too brief and leave some individuals asking alot of questions

    Hoffy also shoots film actively so he should be of help too. In my opinion don't get a film scanner. I got one and I regret it. Using an enlarger and paper developing is 200% more fun and rewarding. The scanner is such a handicap.
    Last edited by Krzys; 05-09-2009 at 12:46pm.

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    Some very good answers from TOM and Kryzs.

    One thing I have noticed with Traditional Ilford papers, even the standard ones appear to process a bit warmer then say if you were to get a b&W inkjet print done. This may give an ever so slight sepia look. That being said, a lot of B&W inkjet prints definately have a blue cast to them.

    IN relation to Kodak BW400CN (which is a C41 processed film), I'd suggest looking at Ilford XP2. This is the same process (C41), but doesn't seem to have the orange mask. It prints optically well and scans much better then silver halide based films.

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    Been away the last two weeks, ironically, in Sydney. Did you get all of your questions answered? I lived in Sydney for 12 years so may be able to help with some specific city info if you still need it.
    The world is an AMAZING place . . .
    flickr :: panoramio

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    Thanks for the additional information everyone.

    Krzys: I've registered for APUG and will definitely be reading up on info. Thanks.

    Hoffy: I was wondering about the BW400CN cos I wasn't sure about developing my own BW film. But I've had a read up on it and watched some youtube videos and it seems quite straight forward. So I'm gonna have to have a go at it. But I will have a look at XP2 too.

    GlennSan: Thanks for your offer GlennSan. In relation to local Sydney info, I guess the main thing I was after was a place to learn BW processing. Even if I don't find one I'm gonna give it a go on my first few test rolls anyways but I wouldn't mind having someone walk me through it. I know of Australia Centre for Photography in Paddington but my work schedule clashes with their BW course.
    Also I was wondering where you buy your film from in Sydney?

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    Honestly, spend your BWCN and XP2 money on real B&W films Or at least buy some Portra NC and desaturate it if needed (it seems to look alot like PortraBW which is a c41B&W much like XP2 and BWCN). Developing B&W is easy, you shouldn't need a course to teach you that. One would be helpful for darkroom techniques though. I was sick one day and had nothing to do so I decided to shoot some film around the house and develop it myself for the first time. Was way too easy. I have more trouble cooking breakfast. I have only ever had troubles when I used expired/oxidized chemicals and when I misunderstood the technique of agitation. Use fresh chemicals and keep your technique consistent. You will have no problem with developing.

    The only thing that may be difficult to grasp (literally) is spooling the film onto reels in darkness.
    Last edited by Krzys; 07-09-2009 at 10:58pm.

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    traditional black and white films cannot be matched by the newer C41 films or digital mono conversion, however C41 films do scan beautifully as Hoffy has mentioned. One thing that is a real pain with proper b&w is a scanners ability to use ICE or similar features. The infared scan cannot penetrate the film which means more post process. i have a hybrid workflow, so my experiences only relate to scanning. i think a scanner is a must if you are shooting film, I have two. But there is something special about watching a print appear before your eyes in the dark room.

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    I am trying to whittle myself off the scanner.

    Make prints > Scan prints - not negs

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    Good place to develop film (Slides) in Sydney would be Fotolab. Beware though, they have dodgy customer service BUT they get the job done and well.

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    Quote Originally Posted by swifty View Post
    GlennSan:
    Also I was wondering where you buy your film from in Sydney?
    I don't. I travel to NYC periodically for my work. While there I make sure I visit B&H and leave with at least 50 rolls of B&W to bring back on the plane with me. Do that for a few years and you end up with *enough* film for a while

    HP5/FP4 (120 or 35mm) averages out at about $3.50 per roll that way.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Krzys View Post
    Developing B&W is easy, you shouldn't need a course to teach you that. The only thing that may be difficult to grasp (literally) is spooling the film onto reels in darkness.
    Agree and agree.

    Quote Originally Posted by TOM View Post
    traditional black and white films cannot be matched by the newer C41 films or digital mono conversion. But there is something special about watching a print appear before your eyes in the dark room.
    Agree and agree

    Quote Originally Posted by Krzys View Post
    Make prints > Scan prints - not negs
    I confess that I would really like a coolscan 9000 but until then, I do it this way too, scan prints. Need to finish the damn darkroom build though. Have rolls banking up calling to me "Glenn, please dev & print me, please ... !"
    Last edited by GlennSan; 14-09-2009 at 9:52pm. Reason: spelling

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    Make contact prints with a flashlight and ponder over them

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    Glenn I have the Coolscan 5000, and it is a great scanner. However, it is a compromise between this and the 9000. They both have different light sources, and from the extensive research that I have done (i always research until i make a decision, then research some more, get a big headache, leave it for a few months, and then end up buying the item that i had originally decided to buy), the 5000 is slightly better than the 9000 for 135 chrome and colour tranny's, the 9000 is better for 135 black and white with its softer light source, and the 9000 is definately the way to go for 120 film. i wish i could afford both, but in the end the 5000 was the most i could justify.

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