Tuesday, December 24, 2013

2 Cameras, 2 Films, 1 Subject

I didn't really take these two photos with a blog post in mind, but I ended up scanning the films together and so the comparison was inevitable.

The first was taken with a c. 1939 Agfa PD16 Clipper. I wrote about this camera recently, so click the link to find out more about it. The film is expired (1981) Tri-X, so I expected some grain. I took the photo indoors near a bright-ish window, but still it was under-exposed for sure (probably f/5.6 at about 1/40th). The processing was done in Adonal diluted 1+100 with semi stand agitation (10 sec init and 10sec at 35min) for 70 minutes. That should have brought the grain under control a little, but I think the other factors were overpowering. The grain is "pronounced" to say the least. The contrast is low, the DOF is not bad, but I am a little too close to the subject, so it is soft. These work to emphasize the grain. So what I ended up with was a photo that looks very old indeed. I think the treatment actually works with this subject, so I am happy to share it.

The next one was taken with my trusty old (c. 1967) Nikkormat FTn with the awesome Nikkor 50mm f/1.4 lens. This lens has great clarity and contrast and takes pretty sharp photos if I do my part and hit the focus correctly. Development was identical to the image above, but the film was slower. Initially it was some generic "Professional Film" rated at asa (iso) 125. Being that it expired in 1981, I rated it at iso 50 and hoped for the best. I will definitely be posting some more photos from this film since I have 100 ft of it. It turned out quite nice, I think. Everything I would expect from this camera/lens and good film. There may be a bit more grain than it would have had 30 years ago, but it is nowhere near as pronounced as with the Tri-X above that expired in the same year.

I hope you have a wonderful Christmas. If you were nice, maybe Santa will put some expired film in your stocking!