A Case for 35mm Film

Introduction
This article is a written collection of thoughts explored in an attempt to think through some recent considerations. Every once in a while I get the itch to explore different film formats. The initial inspiration for this article was the recent consideration of diving in to large format film photography.

I’m approaching this from the standpoint of which film format works best for my type of shooting, and why. Not film vs. digital, which grew tired years ago. Both have merits, both are worthwhile. Exploring the choice of film format though, to me has merit. It’s an investment. Not just the film itself but the infrastructure/gear to shoot, process, scan and archive. There are advantages and disadvantages to each format depending on what/how I’m shooting.

I began thinking through buying, outfitting, then hauling around and using a large format system. I considered the benefits and weighed the cost. With that – this […]

Pure Film

A few weeks ago I did something I’ve been meaning to do for years: began developing my own black and white film again. After a 30+ year hiatus, the time had finally come.

Up until last year I’d been fortunate enough to have one of the best pro film labs in the country only minutes away. I’d always told myself when they shut down, I’d begin. Due to a variety of unfortunate circumstances that time came last year, but I held on, continuing to search for a suitable alternative for the next several months. A few weeks ago I finally said Uncle and put in an order to B&H.

I suppose there are reasons that seem suitable at the time why we do things like wait… and it’s easy to second guess decisions in hind-site. But I’ll say this: I wish I’d done […]

Heavy Metal: The Nikon F2

The valid question is – what does this have to do with the F6. The answer is, nothing at all. But trust me, it’s a worthy diversion.
Intro
If you’re interested in the F6, you should also take a serious look at the F2 line up. As with other “last iterations” the F2 is considered by many the finest SLR Nikon – or anyone else for that matter – has ever built. It’s also been labeled the “most beautiful” camera ever built by some. What I mean by “last iteration” is this: in manufacturing terms the final version of something before a large-scale change is often times the best, most refined, successful version of that something. It leverages all the knowledge and experience the manufacturer has learned up until that point and rolls it into one, final masterpiece. In the case of […]

By |October 7th, 2015|Accessories, From the Past, Nippon Kogaku, Uncategorized, Vintage Nikon|

Mirror-Up Shooting: It’s For Real

Recently I read a blog post from someone claiming Mirror-Up shooting was a hoax. A waste of time, something camera manufacturers dreamed up as way to add a new feature to the camera and charge more for it. A “Emperor’s New Clothes” hoodwink, if you will. Well, take a look at this:

It’s slow motion video of the venerable Nikon F2 at 1/2000 sec. and the lens stopped down to ƒ16. If there were ever any doubt in anyone’s mind whether the mirror’s movement has the ability to create vibrations inside the mirror box this should answer the question once and for all.

To those who don’t know what Mirror-Up shooting is, please visit this page for a more detailed explanation. Essentially, M-Up is a feature included in certain cameras allowing a 2-step shutter release. The first step raises the Mirror […]

Hybrid Workflow: Remember Contact Sheets?

I’ve mentioned in the past what I think is one of the greatest things about shooting film these days: the ability to combine analog qualities with digital tools to create a unique, hybrid workflow to your film photography. One of my favorite things about working in the darkroom or picking up rolls of film from the lab was the contact sheet. Some people like the nicely stacked set of prints. I liked the contact sheets, full of organized, easy to view frames all in one place. After looking at the sheet with a loupe I’d three hole punch and insert it into a binder with the sleeves that held the negatives. There they remain to this day, on the shelf where I can easily walk up to any binder and by quickly scanning the contact sheet find the frame […]

By |June 21st, 2015|From the Past, Hybrid Workflow, Photoshop|

Santa Fe and Vintage, Nikon Film Bodies, chapter 2

Chapter 2: San Luis, Colorado to Santa Fe, New Mexico

One of my great joys in life is driving; to simply wander and explore with a camera; and once in a while to answer that perennial question – what’s down this road, or around the next bend? The drive from San Luis, Colorado to Taos, New Mexico has to be one of the most beautiful drives. Ever. When we lived in Santa Fe returning to Colorado was always a highly anticipated event – largely for the road trip. Sure, you can hop on I-25 and be door-to-door a few minutes faster, but that’s rarely the point.

159 south out of San Luis turns into 522 as you cross the New Mexico state line. The route is dotted with piñon pines – like beard stubble on a giant face – framing broad, sweeping vistas. Active skies hover weightlessly above distant […]

By |November 22nd, 2014|Destinations, From the Past, Places, Technical Features, Uncategorized, Vintage Nikon|

Santa Fe and Vintage, Nikon Film Bodies, chapter 1

In each blog post I attempt to roll in an application to the F6. The F6 is, after all, the reason for this site – and why so many people come here: to read about it. For this series of posts in the spirit of “try something new… you might like it,” I’m going to try something a little different: I’m going to add the Nikon F4s into the mix.

SANTA FE – If heading to the art epicenter of the country with two, vintage Nikon film camers isn’t on every photographer’s bucket list – you need to re-write your bucket list. I’m fortunate to live within an easy day’s drive – and have the benefit of history and knowledge of such a place. This provides new depth and opportunity with each visit. On our latest sojourn to “The City Different” of course I shot the F6, […]

By |October 31st, 2014|Destinations, From the Past, Places, Uncategorized, Vintage Nikon|

Terra Firma

Terra Firma: Landscape Photographs from Around the United States: Comprised of color images from around the United States, Terra Firma focuses on the land. A seemingly endless variety of landscapes lie within Terra Firma: topographic features from slot canyons to grand canyons; from ant hills to foothill; front mountain ranges to still, quiet vallies and everything in between

By |October 24th, 2014|Destinations, From the Past, Places|

New West Fest

New West Fest is in essence, a birthday celebration for the city of Fort Collins, Colorado. For the past 10 years Bohemian Nights Music has partnered with Fort Collins to bring some of the best live music in the country to Fort Collins for the weekend event for all to enjoy - FOR FREE.

By |August 22nd, 2014|4042n, Film Emulsions, From the Past, Uncategorized|
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