One of the pleasures of shooting film is trying different films when you come across some. When I was last in Melbourne, I stumbled by complete chance upon the shop / gallery of FilmNeverDie.com.
These are die shard film fans, with a collection of vintage cams on display, a fridge well stocked with various emulsions but I was also told by Gary, who looks to be the guy in charge, that they will soon launch their own film. Soon being very soon, Gary sold me two rolls and here are the results of the first one. I also bough a JapanCameraHunter JCH StreetPan roll, that will be for another day.
Apart from the label saying C41 and the indication “made in Belgium” the label of the lab and myself were not able to decipher what film it is. I am not aware of C41 films made by Agfa, the only Belgium factory, so this is news for me. But I am just an amateur so who knows.
The film turns out quite grainy and the negatives show low contrast (I mean there are no white areas, the lighter areas being 30% grey), the scans are looking quite ok though and maybe the exposition was not so great. I used the Nikon F with one of my prisms that does not meter and an old Goosen meter. I will shot my second film more carefully.
The result is quite interesting and will probably appeal to the crowd of street photographers that like grain and “gritty” look.
Shirokuro 400 – Black and White chromogenic film c-41 process 35mm 27 exposure film
Here is the new year; so first happy new year to all the readers of this blog, and happy shooting. This is the time for a bit of retrospective, and I won’t miss the opportunity. 2015 was another good (in term of fun) year of film shooting. I managed to break the psychological barrier of one film a week, actually getting to 55 films (this is a roughly total of 1500 pics)
I have been shooting both travels and city (or street) , black and white, slides and color print films, both in 120 and 35mm formats, with a total of 12 different cameras.
Agfa isolette III
Heineken Toy Camera
I had been quite good GAS wise this year, my collection increased “only” by two additions:
the EOS 1N, with 50mm 1.8MKII, the body was given by a friend and I purchased a 80$ lens, so hardly any GAS here
finally I made the acquisition of a Leica M6 classic, and a 35mmF2.8 Summaron to accompany it. This is a long awaited purchase and the table above shows how much I am happy with it
The Leicas are on top of the list as I have now more lenses to pay with. Pity the Nikon F did not get out of the cupboard more I’ll try to do better this year. Some cameras did not get a chance: the F4, the Kodak Autographic, the Canonet, the Minolta Himatic, the Zorki but frankly this last one is not worth using. The Nikon F3, is definitely showing some focusing issue.
Plans for the year: do as well next year, maybe some film only trips. Gear wise I promise to be a good boy: maybe upgrade my scanner or do some processing at home.
Next article I will try to do a small overview of the films I tried this year.
Phitsanulok is a big district 50 km east of Sukhothai; in comparison it is quite a large and busy city. It is famous for its large and ancient temple: Wat Phra Si Rattana Mahathat.
If I may quote wikipedia; it is also known as “Wat Yai” and was founded in 1357.
The temple is very famous because of its golden Buddha image called Phra Phuttha Chinnarat, which is considered by some Thais to be the most beautiful Buddha image in the country. (In the background above)
If you are in Sukhothai visiting Phitsanulok is a nice afternoon trip, one hour drive each way. The temple is quite large (I think Mahathat means large) and other smaller buildings around are worth a look.
One of them hosts a kind of coffin with the feet of the dead (is it lord Buddha?) going through its side. Very weird.
There is a market area at the back which makes a complement to the cultural visit.
The first place we wanted to visit was Ayutthaya an ancient capital, which also happen to be a very busy industrial city, 90 KM north of Bangkok. We decided to sleep close the the airport (at the Novotel, so actually in the airport), and hire a driver and a guide for the day.
Ayutthaya has many interest, but mostly the Royal Palace and many temples. I have not posted any pictures of the Royal Palace, but actually it is not uninteresting. The vast compound is still supposed to be used today by the Royal Family. Constructions are of varying styles, and if your guide is knowledgeable and chatty as ours this makes for a nice visit.
Now more interesting are the temples; as in many big Thai city there are dozens of them; but due to time constraints we only visited 4; each very different.
After the visit of the Royal Palace, we headed to Wat Phanan Choeng. This is a big temple, famous for its (very) large, statue of sitting Buddha. This is a very busy temple specially on week ends; I am not sure if it is permanent but the day we visited the temple devotees were offering new orange robes for the Buddha. A extraordinary occasion to experience the devotion of Thai people.
Next we headed for lunch but nothing worth mentioning.
Someone at the photo lab tipped me that Saturday that the next day, there will be an alms ceremony at Wat Palelai, a Thai Buddhist Temple located in Bedok, in the east of Singapore.
Devotees stood around the yard of the temple and gave their offerings to the monks who made a procession around the yard.
Later the monks gathered at their dining room.
There was 30 to 50 monks for the ceremony but I think only 5 are permanently staying at the temple. Others are going through a temporary monk-hood.
This day was the fiftieth Singapore National Day, happy birthday Singapore. The ceremony was interrupted by the singing of the national anthem at 9am.
It was very nice to discover this temple and be able to attend this ceremony. I also met two people who always hang around the photo lab, so we could have coffee and chit chat a moment after the ceremony was over.
All black and white pics with Leica M6 and either 35mmF2.8 or 50mmF1.4. Film is Rollei RPX 400ISO. Scanned at home with Epson v500.
Color pics with the old faithful Nikon D700 with either the 85mm F1.8 or the 17-35 F2.8.
We had the chance to pay a second visit to the quarry where the Moais were carved on a sunny afternoon. The statues were there waiting for us.
The guy above was called “The tattooed Moai” by our guide. He wears a carving of what looks like the westerner boats that came to the island in the 17th century. Was it carved by locals or by un-respectful traveler, that’s another mystery.
Apart from its iconic statues Rano Raraku also offers a fantastic scenery with a view on the ocean and further left the platform with the 11 Moais.