new to film

Discussion in 'Film Discussion and Q & A' started by Matt.H, Jun 19, 2007.

  1. Matt.H

    Matt.H TPF Noob!

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    I am just starting out in the world of film and have some questions.

    1. I know that this question has been asked before and I know the results vary, but what is a good general all around film of good quality (both color and b/w)? and by good quality I mean semi-pro/pro. (I love shooting landscape/nature/still life)

    2. How do I go about getting it developed? Since I am just starting out I dont want to dive right into doing it myself.

    Thanks, Matt
     
  2. blackdoglab

    blackdoglab yeah I'm easy.... but I'm not cheap

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    Tri-x and agfa apx are my favorites, although apx is no longer being made. Tri-x is around 400 asa and is a bit on the grainy side. T-max is also nice and slower than tri-x. Right now I'm trying foma, but I havn't developed it yet to see whether I like it.

    For developers, all I've tried is d-76 which is good stuff and is cheap and easy to find. I've never sent out any b&w, but there are lads who will do it for you. On the other hand both Kodak and Ilford have c-41 process b&w that you can take to any one hour place.

    Enjoy playin' with yer film!
     
  3. terri

    terri Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Check around in your area for a pro lab that will process the film. Give them a call and ask if they do C-41 B&W as well as standard.

    I like both Ilford and Kodak's B&W films; it's hard to go wrong with either. Once you've shot a few rolls and had the chance to look over your negatives, you may want to take the step to developing at home. If you have a community college or art school nearby, check into their photography and darkroom classes. (You don't need a darkroom to develop film, btw - but it's these types of classes that will show you how.) You'll find it's easy to learn and very enjoyable - and you'll save yourself tons of money in the long run.

    I have no color print film to recommend, I'm sorry. I only shoot color slide film, and for that, Fuji Provia or Velvia are my top picks. Others will have to weigh in here for you.

    Have fun with it! :)
     
  4. ann

    ann No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    trix or hp5+ would be good films to begin with, either one but not both.
    stick with one film for awhile so you can begin to understand what it will do.

    these films are very forgiving when it comes to exposure latitudes'

    the problem with the black and white c41 films, they are developed in color chemistry and are not archival,

    i don't use color films so can't suggest anything to you in that direction.

    learning to develop black and white film is very easy and much cheaper in the long run then sending it out. Another benfit when you develop your own film it is easier to maintain consisitency and take control of the process.
     
  5. Matt.H

    Matt.H TPF Noob!

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    I love this place, I post a question and get an answer back within 20 minutes. Thank you! (all 3 of you!)

    So another question that I just thought of was the photograph size. This may be a silly question but I thought I would ask it so I know.

    If I have a lab developing my photographs, is there a way to have them just put them on CD so I can print later? the other thing about that is if I do that, I will be able to print 8x10 right? (Like I said, it may be silly to ask, but since I'm just starting, I thought I would cover all bases)
     
  6. ann

    ann No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    most modern labs can put the images on a cd for you, they will also give you back your negatives. It is the negative that is used to make the print in the traditional wet darkroom (please let's not go into whether should be a traditional print vs an inkjet print)

    You can make an 8x10 print from a 35mm negative , in fact, it is mbo that it is easier to learn to print using the 8x10 size. Printing smaller or larger is basically the same, the skill set is a bit trickier.
     
  7. selmerdave

    selmerdave TPF Noob!

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    For films, I would recommend trying any pro film. None are bad, they all have different strengths and attributes and it's a matter of taste. If APX is discontinued it's still available at B&H.

    As for scanning and print size, first of all it's possible and I would think these days most labs offer it. As to print size, it's simply going to depend on scanning resolution. If you get 500kb scans, they are not likely going to print very well at 8x10, and that is certainly not a matter of the film used. The larger the print size, the larger the scanned file size you need. One way to figure it is that printing is generally done at 300dpi, so for an 8x10 you would need a 2400x3000 scan.

    Dave
     
  8. deanimator

    deanimator TPF Noob!

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    I used Tri-X for many years, but Kodak changed the recipe several years ago (someone claimed it now has half the silver, and some grain structure changes). Of course it still works, but I investigated the alternatives that were available, and settled on Fuji Neopan 400 as being the nearest to the feel I had with the old TriX.

    The thing with Tri-X was it had been around so long that there was a lot of knowledge about how to get the best out of it. If you really are interested in the deepest blacks, and high-light control, and long or short tonal ranges etc, there´s enough written about this film to keep you very busy.

    The bottom line nowdays is still the same however:
    Get a good film...any of those recommended above are fine,
    and a good developer...again, there are many to choose from
    Follow the instructions carefully until you really know what you are doing
    (little changes can have big effects)

    Read a lot...test a lot...but take your time.
    It´s a bit like learning magic...and that´s why film is still beautiful!!!
     
  9. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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    Yes, but that is a crop from the full frame. 35mm format is 2:3 aspect ratio. Meaning it makes these print sizes if left uncropped: 4x6, 6x9, 8x12, 10x15, 12x18, etc...
     
  10. Alpha

    Alpha Troll Extraordinaire

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    That is unless you don't fill the page, or file down your neg holder.
     
  11. NJMAN

    NJMAN TPF Noob!

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    Just out of curiousity, what is the aspect ratio if you are going for 5x7s, 8x10s, 10x13s, 11x14s, and 12x16s?
     
  12. Smith2688

    Smith2688 TPF Noob!

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    12/16 reduces to 3/4.
     

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