Who knows where it’s going?
When I started with this whole film thing, I had no idea where it would lead. I certainly had no expectations that it would magically make me a better photographer. As a matter of fact, I had no expectations other than it would be different and fun and it has been exactly that.
As I scanned the last few images from the last roll that I developed, I looked at my photo count and see that I’ve scanned 656 negatives. Certainly the bulk of them have been 35 mm scans as they are easy to do. I can do 12 at a time. With 120, it’s one at a time, so I tend to not scan the entire roll. I pick and choose. As near as I can tell, I’ve shot about 18 rolls of 120 film, or about 270 images, of which I’ve scanned 196. I’ve shot 13 rolls of 36 exposure 35 mm film and scanned 460 of those images, giving me 656.
I’ve (re)learned a lot about film and have developed likes and dislikes. More than likely I’ll stay in the middle of the range with Ilford films. Though I like really small grain, and Ilford Pan F suits the bill, I don’t like its really high contrast all that much. I prefer FP4′s tonal range as well as HP-5′s speed and tonal range. I shot a roll of Ilford Delta 3200 and, IMHO, it should be Delta 1000. It’s cool in a pinch and I have another roll of it to shoot that I’ll probably shoot at 1000 ISO. My go-to developer is still Rodinal. I hear that my mad scientist friend, Tom, is mixing up a home brew batch for himself!
I’ve found that I really like medium format film. It’s beautiful and I don’t have to break the bank to have a full frame camera, 35 mm or medium format.
Of course, my D300, slighted though she may have been, is still my go-to camera for color, low light, and sports. It just cannot be beat. On the streets, it’s the Olympus and the Leica, and for B&W landscapes, the Mamiya 645e. I want to try a roll or two of color slide film, but also want to keep costs to a minimum and not have any outside development costs.
Thanks to Tom, I have some old school 120 film that I’m going to shoot. Some of it is 10 years old! I’m not quite sure what the developing times will be, but I’ll do some research and figure it out. It’s all about the fun anyway.
Although I make jokes about digital being “The Dark Side”, of course, you know that I don’t mean it. No one’s going to pry my D300 from hands!
It has indeed been fun and I still look forward to those evenings of developing film while watching a movie. Hopefully, you’ve found this interesting, too. Perhaps it may have even sparked your interest a bit … maybe you’ll try some film one day. It’s great to have choices!