Help with this film please

Discussion in 'Film Discussion and Q & A' started by thatguy, Jan 4, 2008.

  1. thatguy

    thatguy TPF Noob!

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    Hi, I'm quite new to film photography and I was wondering if you could give me some help. I've recieved some provia 100F that I'm looking to use soon to shoot a sunrise, but I just wanted to learn a bit more about it. I've never used color reversal film before so I was wondering if anyone could explain the difference between it and print film. I've heard it is less forgiving in terms of exposure and is more expensive to print, but gives quite contrasty and punchy colours. Any help would be greatly appreciated
     
  2. Smith2688

    Smith2688 TPF Noob!

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    I haven't personally used it, but here are some opinions on it:

    http://www.photographyreview.com/cat/film/slide-film/fujifilm/PRD_84456_3118crx.aspx

    Slide film (color reversal) has less latitude than print film so it requires your exposures to be more exact. Pictures taken with slide film generally have more contrast and pop to them. Also, exposed slides don't shift color much or at all over time, so color accuracy is high.
     
  3. thatguy

    thatguy TPF Noob!

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    Thanks. Is it worth using then for the sunrise or as a beginner would I be better off sticking with the other film. Also, do you know if it is difficult or expensive to get developed and printed. One more thing, if I am shooting a sillhouette , should I meter off the highlights? I thought I should, but I would just like to check.
     
  4. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Sunsets usually have a very wide tonal range. The sun, if it's in the frame, is obviously very bright...but anything else (besides the sky) that is in the photo...will probably be back lit...and will be rather dark.
    Slide film has a lower latitude than negative film...so you will have to carefully choose what parts of the photo you want to expose for. If you expose for the sky, you risk loosing detail parts that are much brighter or darker. If you expose for the shadows, you risk looking detail (and color) in the bright areas. This isn't really different than any other type of photography...but it's something to be aware of because of the narrow latitude of the film.

    It's often recommended to bracket your shots. Basically, you take a series of shots and vary the exposure with each shot. Thereby giving you options to choose from.
     
  5. Joxby

    Joxby TPF Noob!

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    I dont think you should worry too much about it, just get out and shoot it.
    Slide film does require a little more care with exposure than other films but if you bracket and take notes you will learn quickly.
    To be honest, with a decent meter you struggle to come back with nothing.
    I've posted this before, its Provia 400, shot in to the sun, the tonal range is huge and isn't accurately represented in this scan, theres much more detail in the dark areas in the slide.
    Its an all manual camera, whos settings are decided by a 50 year old selinium light meter.
    Note the sky, I feel sure my digital camera would blow seven shades of sxxt out of that sky and leave the foreground black, so even if you do overcook/undercook a bit, its unlikely to be a total loss.

    [​IMG]
     
  6. Helen B

    Helen B TPF Noob!

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    Prints from reversal film are usually made by scanning and digital printing unless you go for Cibachrome printing which is usually high quality, high cost.

    As already mentioned, it's usually better to expose for the highlights that you want detail in. A slide with blown-out highlights and good shadow detail generally looks worse (wishy-washy) than one with good highlight exposure and blocked up shadows (saturated and punchy). As Joxby's example shows, you don't have to keep detail in specular highlights (direct reflections of the sun) to get a good-looking silhouette.

    Reversal colour film isn't as colour-accurate as colour negative film, because the two masks cannot be included. This is hardly ever important in pictorial work.

    You can control the contrast of colour reversal film to a small extent by using pull or push processing. Pulling (giving less-than-normal development) will lower contrast and effective speed, pushing will do the opposite. The degree of contrast change you can achieve before there is significant decrease in image quality is not great, and pushing tends to be used more for effective speed increase.

    Best,
    Helen
     
  7. Sideburns

    Sideburns TPF Noob!

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    Do you have a Grad ND?

    That would help a lot shooting a sunset, especially with slides.
     
  8. thatguy

    thatguy TPF Noob!

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    Thanks for all the responses and help. I unfortunately don't have a grad nd, so I think I'll just have to try and keep the sun out of the frame to get the whole scene exposed correctly. On a side note, if I'm planning on shooting more of this type of film, is it worth getting a slide viewer. How much would a decent one cost?
     
  9. Sideburns

    Sideburns TPF Noob!

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    You won't get the whole scene properly exposed. You'll get either the water, the sky, or neither. This is why a 3 stop ND Grad is so useful.

    Either way you can still get some nice effects.

    Slide viewer as in a projector?

    You could always use a light table and loupe...

    Look on ebay for both. Lots of good used slide projectors out there...lots of people moving to digital.
     
  10. thatguy

    thatguy TPF Noob!

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    Ok thanks, and yeah, I meant projector, not viewer
     

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