Everything is nice in black and white, there was not other choice for pictures a few decades back anyway, nor for motion pictures. And black clothes have a sliming effect (oh I m being carried away, my goth side is speaking now).
That said the seaside is not necessarily associated with black and white photography, the sand and blue skies are far away from the gloom and doom of big cities.
This is part of the second roll of the year, still going through the 30 meters roll of Ilford HP5. It is a bit boring but I used the M6 classic again and all these pictures were taken with the 35mm Summicron Asph v2.
The Fiat 500 is associated to the Dolce Vita, a movie that was host in … Technicolor black and white.
In winter on the famous Croisette boulevard, not many stars nor sunbathers, but you can see the light is quite good.
On the seaside you can also so some street type shots.
Finally the sea, on this scene backlit by the setting sun (on the left), the old city of Cannes in the far right, hills of Tanneron behind and the Esterel range on the left.
Finally two random shots, trying to see what can be done a bit closer.
Oh my Oh my. We are in March already and here is my last B&W roll of 2021, where was I? Well not shooting for sure, as I just brought my first roll of 2022 to the lab. Well time flies, photography is one of the losers in the adjustment to my new life.
Anyway, last roll of 2021, shot in December in France, first 4 shots in Paris, next 5 in Cannes, the others in Antibes.
This is a single roll of Ilford HP5+, still hand rolled from the 30 meters roll I bought last year in Singapore. Pictures were taken with the M6 classic with the Elmar 50F3.5 or the Summicron 35 Asph v2. Oh by the way that’s not my last roll of 2021, no no no sir, I quickly shot a roll of expired Portra 400 at the end of December, but I am not sure there are enough shots to share on that one, or maybe yes I ll do next week.
I am a slow shooter and a slower poster. So here is a roll shot in late October / November 2021 in London and in Paris for the last few shots.
I am sure the film was from my 30m meters roll of Ilford HP5, and shot with the Leica M6. I cannot se so sure about the lens.
The roll was processed by AnalogueFilms in Shoreditch again. I had to explain a bit that the film was not what was said on the canister, but I think the message passed across. They were also very kind and gave me a handful of empty canisters that I will replenish with more HP5.
The first three shots were taken during a long walk from Knightsbridge to Borough Market, the one above and the one below were taken another week around Covent Garden. The guy above was having some kind of practical joke with friends.
Then we went to Paris for the last week of November, from now on I used the Elmarit 50 only on the M6.
We are all kids in front of the Galleries Lafayette Christmas display.
That’s it Roll#2 is finally back from the lab. Thanks to some film fotogs I met in town, I finally find a more affordable lab, although I must say the over all price is still steep, but I am down to 10 £ for processing and scanning down from 16£ for my first roll.
Still a long way to go to beat Singapore prices. On a side note, I have ordered some Vitamin C and a thermometer so I can go back to Caffenol, as soon as I find some Soda wash.
Good job from the last, scanning is quite ok, I chose the high res JPG option for the price. I must say that after 18 month of Cafenol, I really cannot make the difference. More grain, less grain? I am not very technical.
Definitely London offers different scenes that Singapore, I still don’t feel at ease shooting random strangers, but there is enough going on to make useful subjects.
Roll 3 is under way, but as I mentioned somewhere else being grounded 10 days with Covid is not helping my photographic activity.
A short post with not many words for the roll 14th of the year 2021. This is a roll of Ilford HP5+ hand-rolled from a bulk roll. I thought I counted 30 frames but it looks It did not count well and could just fire 25 shots.
I dug out the Leica M4 from the box and screw the Voigtländer 21mmF4 Color Skopar in front of it, set the 21-24mm finder, put a battery in my Sekonic light meter and hit the road.
The roll was processed at home in Caffenol Delta. I put a 6th of the water from the fridge to cool down the very hot tap water ( 29 to 30 degrees), and used the usual dev time (4.41 minutes) for the delta recipe. It looks it had a positive effect as the negatives were not as dark as usual.
The film dried overnight and was scanned today. After scanning there are a few dusts specs and white spots, but all in all a pretty successful processing.
A pretty mundane set of pictures : after 15 month without leaving Singapore, I start to be a bit bored. No big celebrations are happenings, it s a bit more of the same every week ends.
I shall not complain too much as the weather was pretty good that day, instead of the usual downpour we get on afternoons these days.
Luckily sometime the unexpected steps into the frame
Or you have lunch with friends
And suddenly when you feel you are finally in the mood, the film ends.
Rainy day Saturday, when I left home to meet my fried Ez at Tekka Market, in Little India. The weather was quite bad so I left the Hassie home (Ez is the man behind HUGS the Hasselblad User Group Singapore) and only put the Nikon F3 loaded with a hand rolled roll of HP5+ (and a spare roll of TriX).
I was soaked when getting to the MRT. I have not seen my friend for a while so we spent a certain time in front of a coffee and shot randomly what happened within range.
I set the F3 to ISO 320, to overexpose my film a little bit as recommended for Caffenol for medium speed film. My best lens for the F3 is the 50mmF1.4AIS so the combo enabled to shoot decently in the dimmed lighted market (also given the very gloomy external light).
I came quite a few times in Tekka market but that’s not my favorite : I find it a bit too dark, and alleys are on the narrow side so you often find yourself in the middle of somebody else’s path. I generally feel a bit more at ease in Tiong Bahru or Chinatown Complex, but that Saturday was very nice and friendly.
Once home I quickly processed the film with the Caffenol Delta Recipe, adjusted for 500ml of water. At current temperature ( more or less 30 degrees), processing time is 4’40”. I use the Ilford rinsing method and Ilford fixer after that.
The smile of the butcher
Scanning was a breeze, the film is quite flat and after processing shows very little dust. The roll only had 20 full shoots and 2 half shots at start and end. 22 frames rolls are nice because I can hand them to dry in the shower without having to cut it in two.
Loosing half a frame at the start is a bit obvious but why at the end? I remember now that when loading from a bulk roll the first part of the roll, which will be the last frame is partially exposed, only enabling for half a shot. It is very difficult to know when you last shot will be, maybe I should try to quickly load a new roll and retake the last shot?
I still struggle focusing with the F3, but I think this roll is ok from that point of view. I have included a few more pictures below, I hope you enjoyed the reading
The weather has been very bad in Singapore recently so I did not shoot anything since the first of Jan. Good opportunity for my usual reflective post on 2020. The COVID has of course reduced the photo opportunities this year, no travels since February, less local events. Anyway, I still managed to spend some time on my hobby : burn some film.
Below is a breakdown of my 52 roll in film types:
Count of Film No
Ilford HP5 Plus
Rollei Retro 80s
Kodak TRI X
Ilford Delta 400
Ultrafine Xtreme 400
Kodak TMY 400
Kodak Portra 400
Ilford Delta 3200
Kodak Pro Image
Kentmere 400 pan
Fuji Neopan 400
Ilford Pan F
Rollei Superpan 200
I mostly shot black and white again. Mostly because I converted to Caffenol in the middle of the year, and have now processed around 20 rolls using this method. I lost 4 rolls more of less in the process, but I have a good standard procedure now. I also bought a roll of HP5+. Both steps make me shot black and white film for a lot cheaper.
Ilford in getting to the top of the list this year, surpassing the usual Kodak. I think Kodak is very close only because of the color films. In term of black and white, Fuji is this year in front of Kodak. I bought some expired Acros 100 which gives super good results in Caffenol.
Below is the breakdown of cameras I used:
Agfa Isolette III
Minolta Himatic 7s
No surprise the 3 Leica bodies and the Hasselblad are still trusting the top of the list. The M6 is really a picture making machine, actually I just had the joints redone and the crank fixed.
I did not buy any new cameras this year still I made some nice additions to my kit. I bought a new Sekonic 308-X meter as the old one died, a friend offered me a Keks EM01 light meter, which fits on the cold shoe o fthe M4 or IIIc, a very nice add on.
I tried to fix the rangefinder of the Isolette III and managed to shot a few rolls with it, making it climb to the fifth rank.
Actually I bought a second body for parts which has a few issues, so I may play to fix it or send it for service.
Curiously I digged the Nikon F3 from the Nikon box (I have a Leica box, a Nikon box and a various box). I gad very pleasant results mostly with the 50mm F1.4AIS.
Lugging a SLR around is not longer a pleasure and this guy is so beaten up that I am a bit ashamed to carry it in the streets, but amazing results this year.
I only shot one roll with the Nikon F, with the 50mmF1.4 Non AI, on Polypan 50. My two photomnic meters are no longer metering or I can t be bothered to buy new batteries to use them. Using the Sekonic is just as good.
Finally two rolls with the Minolta 7S, great performer, still flimsy and the underwater Heineken Camera whose housing is leaving his last days.
Also the nice discovery of the year is the Whampoa Color photo lab which does a great job for processing and scanning color films.
I managed to go to that place on Saturday and back on Sunday and I managed to f*ck-up two rolls of film in two separate days.
As I did not really knew the place I rode there Saturday for a scouting tour ahead of a potential further photo outing. I don’t like carrying a camera on the bike, but I still packed the Leica M6 with the Elmar 50mmF3.5 loaded with a half roll of Kentmere 400. I found the place quite easily and a group of urban sketchers where at work on the late morning sun. You can check there Facebook group there : https://www.facebook.com/usksg
As per my last post the area, without lacking of interest, looks more like a slum than a rural village. There is surely a certain esthetic to it, and a small sense of history in the houses hosting places of worship.
So why did the film turn that bad? I was a bit stressed with by the fact that this was the first time I processed the Kentmere 400 in Caffenol and I could not really find any indication of processing time. I decided to try the Delta Recipe with the usual timing but even before starting the processing something was smelling fishy: my Caffenol mix did not have the usual smell, but was smelling as plain coffee. I pursued in pouring the mix … et voila: a very undeveloped film. I am surprised that the scanner (Epson v800) can make images of it at all.
Bis repetita Sunday : I went with the Leica M262 (hence the first post) and the Hassie 500. The weather was very bad, but I made a roll of Ilford HP5+ which I though could have been half decent
I mixed the Delta recipe when I reached home and that one smelled fine. So I definitely mixed something incorrectly Saturday. Alas having a problem loading the film on my plastic spool, I split the spool in the dark bag and decided to pull it out and clean it, but in the movement I also pulled the film out of the bag. By the time I could put it back, the roll as been exposed to light and only 3 shots are exploitable.
The roll was mostly of frontal shots of the houses that I found geometrically interesting, this one shows the light leaks.
Lessons learned: once again if is smells fishy it surely is, less haste, nothing is worth than the pictures you will never see.
Nevermind, I still have faith in Caffenol and home processing.
Ok I am not sure if that is exactly true, but that keeps me busy and entertained. So last week, I loaded a hand rolled of HP 5+ in the Leica M6, still having the Summicron 35 Asph v2 attached and when out shooting during our family stroll.
Usual subjects of a week-end stroll, vehicles, back alleys and passers by. I really like how the motorbike on the first pictures renders. This is a handy 24 shots roll, shot at 320 ISO.
Ah I have not said it yet but this if processed in caffenol again. I finally had an epiphany yesterday : my weekly roll does not need 750mm or solution, 500mm is probably more than enough. That will save me even more money. You will notice a small lighter band horizontally in the two next shots, I think something’s not right in the M6, maybe time for revision.
So I scaled down my Caffenol Delta recipe from 500ml and it worked pretty well. The film looks ok, the pictures are easy to scan, there is little dirt on the negs. My fixer also comes close to the max number of rolls, but I cannot notice any difference, maybe I’ll do another couple of rolls before doing a new mix.
I met this young lady by chance, and asked if I could take her picture, we she looked very happy to. I shot the week before another stranger with half blond half dark hairdo and I found it worth doing a second one.
I learnt, to take more that one shot when people are happy for me to take their portrait, but two is not enough, I should have done 3 or 4 , different metering, different framing. Sill a learning curve.
Vespas parading in Haji lane. And below bit more personal my friends at the coffee shop in Keong Siak Road
Than you very much for the courtesy of the drivers at the pedestrian crossing.
City life seems to be a lot about waiting.
And more waiting
Chinatown at dusk
Italian fashion buff.
I hope you likes the reading, Caffenol rocks! I went over some old roll of films processed by a lab and actually they are really comparable to what I do not in Caffenol. Oh and what about last week roll then ? Well maybe I will post it a week where I cannot shot an entire roll. But rest assured the M6 is already loaded with a roll of the newly packages Kentmere 400 … to follow