How to properly shoot color...

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by MichaelMigz, Dec 26, 2005.

  1. MichaelMigz

    MichaelMigz TPF Noob!

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    Okay. I have a problem here. I am shooting an SLR(film) and my color pictures are constantly coming out poorly. I normally shoot BW and develop/print myself; however, when I shoot color, I use Kodak 400 film and I shoot as I would BW(light meter/adjust shutter speed/adjust aperature/shoot) Is this correct? Am I doing something wrong? Thanks in advance.
     
  2. Unimaxium

    Unimaxium TPF Noob!

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    There's nothing special to using color film. You use the same metering techniques as B&W.

    Your shots could be coming out poorly for any number of reasons. But to narrow it down to any specific cause, we need more information. What camera are you using? How are you metering? What film are you using? (Kodak 400 is not very specific). How /where are you having the film developed? How many rolls have come out poorly? And most importantly, what exactly is wrong with your shots? What do you mean when you say "poorly"? Can you show us any examples (do you have a scanner you can use to post the images online)? Give us some more specifics and maybe we can help you better.
     
  3. MichaelMigz

    MichaelMigz TPF Noob!

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    Im sorry. Thats my fault. No scanner at the moment, but I will try to get some up by tonight. For now, I will provide as muhc info as posssible. As for film, it is "Kodak Max 24". The pictures appear to have a yellowish tint to them and then often have streaks were the subject moved. I shoot a Nikon F100. The way I meter is, I look through my lens, and the meter is in there. If it is underexposed, I set a lower shutter or aperature, and if it is overexposed, i set a higher sutter or aperature. Could it possibly be the film that i am using? oh, right, its been happening for a few rolls now.
     
  4. MichaelMigz

    MichaelMigz TPF Noob!

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    And like, the color is never rich. it is always bland. i cant get vivid colors or good contrast...
     
  5. darin3200

    darin3200 TPF Noob!

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    Yellow tint, bland colors and bad contrast aren't really something you can fix through the camera, and are mostly likely the result of bad or cheap film. I would recommend trying Kodak Ultra-Color 400 for some shots, its more expensive but the colors and contrast and great.
    The other thing might be where you are getting the film developed. If its some bad one hour place that could also be part of the problem.
     
  6. e_

    e_ TPF Noob!

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    Hello Michael

    Any number of factors can result in poor results from colour negative film...

    Without closer enquiry, your method of exposure - "light meter/adjust shutter speed/adjust aperature/shoot" - is correct. Modern cameras using modern film emulsions get it right most of the time, too

    In my experience, fault is often with the lab - especially the "High Street" mini lab variety,

    Experimenting with film to improve results can be costly, but here's a few things to try:

    * Select a well exposed film strip and have several different labs produce prints. Compare their results; you might be amazed

    * Try rating your film at differing ISO settings. To make this meaningful, keep careful notes and shoot a number of scenes, exposing 3 frames at each one. Expose all 3 frames identically - but alter the ISO setting of each. If using 400 ISO film, I'd suggest the following: (i) 400 (ii) 320 (iii) 200. Process the film normally, refer to your notes and carefully check results

    * Repeat the process with a variety of films. One is spoilt for choice

    Have fun

    :)

    e_
     
  7. MichaelMigz

    MichaelMigz TPF Noob!

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    Wow. Thanks a lot for all the help!! Ill be sure to try it all!
     
  8. jwkwd

    jwkwd TPF Noob!

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    By chance, would you happen to be using a filter on your lens, perhaps for B&W film ?
     
  9. AIRIC

    AIRIC TPF Noob!

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    I have worked in the photo industry for over a dozen years and all I can say is it doesn’t matter how much you pay to have your film developed and printed as you are at the mercy of the technicians who are handling your material.

    I challenge all of you to take one neg, or even one digital file, and have it printed at four different locations and I bet you will see four different results.

    I bet your poor colour is all due to the place you are having your images printed. Pay a little more but it never guarantees a proper treatment to your negs and pics.

    Nothing I hate worse then crap photo finishing.

    Eric
     
  10. Digital Matt

    Digital Matt alter ego: Analog Matt

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    Find a good pro lab, and tell them not to color correct. Also, as mentioned, try different film, maybe even slide film if you are really wanting saturated, vivid color.
     
  11. DocFrankenstein

    DocFrankenstein Clinically Insane?

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    Probably the lab monkeys

    On the other note - are you sure you're using the meter correctly. Are you overexposing 2 stops when you're metering off white? Are you underexposing 2 stops when you're metering off "black"?

    Do you understand what I've asked you and why you should do that?
     
  12. MichaelMigz

    MichaelMigz TPF Noob!

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    not exactly doc... care to explain?
     

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