Sunday, July 20, 2014

Yo' Can't Get That Stuff No Mo'

EOS 5D, EF 28-105 Lens, DxO Optics Pro
EOS Elan-7, Kodak Color Ultramax 400, DxO Optics Pro

What can't you get no more? Film. At least not real locally. Our Main St. Pharmacy stopped carrying it, and so did the nearest WalMart - the one I always get to do my processing. I suspect someday real soon, WalMart's Mini Lab will be gone, and they'll have moved the Digital Cameras into the Electronics Dept. For certain, film will never die completely - in fact, when I first started shooting in 1978 I thiink it was, there were no Mini Labs. I lived in a fair sized city at the time, but not big enough for film processing. I recall putting my films into a special envelope and sending them away, and then singing "Someday my prints will come..." for a couple of weeks, and finally get them back in the mail, for 50 Cents a print - which seemed like a lot of money then. Boarderless were 10 Cents more!

Maybe it's just as well. Maybe I'm finally going to capitulate. Base on the above results, why wouldn't I? The Full Frame DSLR (top) took this shot with everything exactly as it should be - the colours are spot-on, the dynamic range is fantastic, from the clouds in the sky to the tread on the tires. Everything's nice and sharp, and extremely life-like. I shot it at -2/3 EV and used DxO Optic Pro to lift the detail from the shadows, with no noise whatsoever resulting. The film version, on the other hand, is disappointing, but perhaps only when comparing with the Digital. The lack of detail in the sky is explained by the fact that I shot this a half hour later, and the overcast had grown deeper. Also, I had shot this at 0 EV (using the same EF 28-105 Lens BTW). It's a bit grainey, and the colour isn't right. I scanned this several times, changing colour, resolution, size - this was the best I could get. I realize my Epson V500 Scanner isn't the best, but it's what I've got - I doubt I'll be going out to get a better one.It's not bad, but it lacks that digital DSLR perfection we've all come to hate.

But have a look at these, taken with the Elan-7 and EF 28-105 the same day (no comparison shots - sorry):

I find when I shoot film and don't make comparisons, I thoroughly enjoy film. Funny about that. If it goes back to having to send film away and wait two weeks, I'll still be doing it sometimes - especially during the summer peak shooting season.

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