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Author Topic: Digital vs Film  (Read 23670 times)
hobbsr
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« on: January 05, 2009, 10:40:27 PM »
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Hi All,

I know this might not be the best place to ask but I respect the users here and wanted to get some wider views on the topic. You are most likely asking why? Well I focus on higher end wedding and portraits and over the past couple of years the number of files and workflow of the digital world is really becoming a bit of a problem. I have an very long IT background so it is not a matter of me not knowing the technology and the required steps, I have also tried all the major tools and spent a lot of time training myself to get the best result. So how does this relate to the film question? Well I currently use D3's and the H3D systems and on the Nikon front the next step is to upgrade at some stage to the D3x, which of course will add much larger files to my already growing disk space and many many external drives.  My thoughts of late have been how do I reduce the time spent in my workflow and how do I differentiate my services, I do realise these are two very different questions but I think that film my provide a common answer? I have already taken one step to use the H3D for my "hero shots" as a way to step up in the market place as only a handful at most shot these days on medium format.

So is returning to film the answer? shoot on the weekend, drop of the film to the lab and pick-up proofs later in the week. Of course I would then utilise the full colour service of the lab and get high res scan for album design or prints as most of the labs here only now print from scans. I then can return to handing proofs to my clients as an end product.

I have started to test a Contax 645 vs my D3 and of course you could say the D3 films are better, I was looking for other and better understandings of the argument for and against shooting film in this day and age. I see the following pro/con's:

Pro's:
1. Film equipment is cheaper (generally) and will last much longer than any current digital purchase
2. Workflow as in using and being in front of the computer is reduced by moving back to proofs and scans from the lab
3. Not many people will be using such systems therefore a market differentiation
4. No more white balance issues
5. Images will have a different feel to them

Con's:
1. How long will film be around?
2. How many labs will offer the services to support this?
3. How much will these products and services increase as demand reduces? BW film seems to be increasing in the European market but what about 35mm or 120/220 colour neg?
4. Still need to have scans and maybe will still end up doing post on them?
5. Not many film system in production? Contax is great but a dead end road so will need to buy up spares
6. Having to go back and make sure exposure is correct? of course I do that now but I know I got it because I can see it?

Anyway I will be very interested what you all think of these elements to the debate as well as how many if anybody is using film in their business and why have they stayed with it and not gone digital? Does anybody feel that film will come back for the very reasons I have stated briefly here.

Lastly, I think that Ansel Adams said it the best "The negative is the equivalent of the composer's score, and the print the performance" I think too much today is spent looking deep into pixels and not understanding or producing prints, I know I am guilty of this! That is another reason I think that for all my needs the print from film will be of the highest quality and the different to a D3 or D3x very hard to see?

Regards

Rodney
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Dustbak
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« Reply #1 on: January 06, 2009, 12:53:50 AM »
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I sometimes have nostalgic urges towards film. They last until I realize how much of a hassle it really is. To start with your list of Pros where I think you are off.

1) Film will last longer than digital. The only thing that is different in your H3 is the back. This can last for ages but most of us choose, for whatever reason, to buy a new one every several years. There are many backs that are considered to be from the dark ages that are still functioning fine and producing the same results as when brand new.
2) Workflow, now you will be waiting for the Lab and putting part of your workflow in their hands. Sure it means you don't do some of the work anymore but part of the results is in other peoples hands
3) Excellent point.
4) I think you are thinking the wrong way around here. WB issues mostly derive from mixed light sources or other difficult lighting. Film suffers as much from this and doesn't have the ability to alter WB setting or the make different ones for different parts of the images and blend them in (sure it can be done but in most cases that means bringing the film to digital )
5) Excellent point but this is doable with digital as well. I think part of this feeling comes from the sense of 'surprise/magic' that comes from film. Naturally it has an already 'developed feel' that simply isn't there in digital. I can certainly understand it can be much more convenient for people to use film to get there if they simply cannot come to good results with digital.

As for your cons. I think film will be around still for a very long time. As a niche maybe but it will. There are far too many people that still use film and would not want to do otherwise. Most other cons you mention are valid as well.

The question is simply whether you feel good with it. I can understand this because now and than I think about the same thing. In the end I never do it because I am sure I will buy a really nice scanner and get the images to digital anyway in the end, etc.. etc.. etc..  For me the choice remains digital. I know people that will never give up film but some of them even use digital alongside by now. OTOH, I also know several people that took up film next to digital. In most cases that was for personal projects, it was always for the magic/unpredictability and the mood/feel/tone/etc of film (which I agree is still lovely and hard to be matched by digital though not impossible).

If you really feel film is the way to go, go ahead but be careful nostalgia can be a dangerous emotion

Do you have the H3D(not the II) which I thought can still carry a film back?
« Last Edit: January 06, 2009, 12:58:41 AM by Dustbak » Logged
Misirlou
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« Reply #2 on: January 06, 2009, 01:09:46 AM »
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Another thing worth considering about film is that it may lose practical consistency over time. Back when thousands of pros were using it in every major city, the labs had good reasons, and sufficent volume, to make sure the materials and processing were consistent and repeatable. As commercial film use declines, eventually we may reach the point where it will be difficult to get film processed with accurate color balance in many areas. Not such a big deal for black and white, or those who process their own color. Or, maybe the film manufacturers themselves won't be able to produce consistent batches to shoot with in the first place.

I wonder if there's some sort of "critical mass" effect where there needs to be a certain volume of users to support the industry, and that as soon as the amount of buyers dips below whatever that number might be, the whole film business as we know it will collapse over night.

Sure, there are still people making daguerotypes, but homebrewed film may or may not be a viable model for typical working pros.
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Anders_HK
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« Reply #3 on: January 06, 2009, 01:22:36 AM »
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Quote from: hobbsr
Hi All,

I know this might not be the best place to ask but I respect the users here and wanted to get some wider views on the topic. You are most likely asking why? Well I focus on higher end wedding and portraits and over the past couple of years the number of files and workflow of the digital world is really becoming a bit of a problem. I have an very long IT background so it is not a matter of me not knowing the technology and the required steps, I have also tried all the major tools and spent a lot of time training myself to get the best result. So how does this relate to the film question? Well I currently use D3's and the H3D systems and on the Nikon front the next step is to upgrade at some stage to the D3x, which of course will add much larger files to my already growing disk space and many many external drives.  My thoughts of late have been how do I reduce the time spent in my workflow and how do I differentiate my services, I do realise these are two very different questions but I think that film my provide a common answer? I have already taken one step to use the H3D for my "hero shots" as a way to step up in the market place as only a handful at most shot these days on medium format.

So is returning to film the answer? shoot on the weekend, drop of the film to the lab and pick-up proofs later in the week. Of course I would then utilise the full colour service of the lab and get high res scan for album design or prints as most of the labs here only now print from scans. I then can return to handing proofs to my clients as an end product.

I have started to test a Contax 645 vs my D3 and of course you could say the D3 films are better, I was looking for other and better understandings of the argument for and against shooting film in this day and age. I see the following pro/con's:

Pro's:
1. Film equipment is cheaper (generally) and will last much longer than any current digital purchase
2. Workflow as in using and being in front of the computer is reduced by moving back to proofs and scans from the lab
3. Not many people will be using such systems therefore a market differentiation
4. No more white balance issues
5. Images will have a different feel to them

Con's:
1. How long will film be around?
2. How many labs will offer the services to support this?
3. How much will these products and services increase as demand reduces? BW film seems to be increasing in the European market but what about 35mm or 120/220 colour neg?
4. Still need to have scans and maybe will still end up doing post on them?
5. Not many film system in production? Contax is great but a dead end road so will need to buy up spares
6. Having to go back and make sure exposure is correct? of course I do that now but I know I got it because I can see it?

Anyway I will be very interested what you all think of these elements to the debate as well as how many if anybody is using film in their business and why have they stayed with it and not gone digital? Does anybody feel that film will come back for the very reasons I have stated briefly here.

Lastly, I think that Ansel Adams said it the best "The negative is the equivalent of the composer's score, and the print the performance" I think too much today is spent looking deep into pixels and not understanding or producing prints, I know I am guilty of this! That is another reason I think that for all my needs the print from film will be of the highest quality and the different to a D3 or D3x very hard to see?

Regards

Rodney

Rodney,

You may wish to make same post on apug or other film based forum such as photonet medium format forums and see what reply you will get  

Photography is my hobby. Film is still beautiful and results from DSLRs frequent lack in image quality for large prints. When on a stroll among some photo galleries in Shanghai last weekend, sure some with digital galleries captured my eyes, but the one that did so most was one with B&W large format prints made the traditional way...

You are right, many of us are pixel peeping and we are all getting sold on new technology, not the least in forums of endless discussions of what gear is incremental better... Film was good, and was in many ways also more simple for high quality images but nowadays it is more diffficult to use film due shortage of labs supporting it, yet it depends on where we live and how many of us who still used it.

As an amateur digital is also far more expensive. I went medium format digital because DSLRs simply cannot match as pleasing rendering as film.

I just bought a 4x5, now that would be something to offer for wedding... a highly traditional pose as memory???...  a 4x5 slide that would last 300 years... digital files will not... unless endless back-up...

Film better be around for long lasting! I still like film   .

Anders
« Last Edit: January 06, 2009, 01:25:43 AM by Anders_HK » Logged
evgeny
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« Reply #4 on: January 06, 2009, 01:27:21 AM »
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I use Contax 645 bodies with film backs and MFDB, and a Nikon DSLR (already sold 35mm F6/FM3a).
From my experience

1. Film images look different than DSLR and MFDB, and are great just directly from the camera. This is the most important difference.

2. Film images require minimal adjustment in Photoshop when exposure is correct. This is another important difference.

3. Production time for studio works is not very different. Film needs development and long scanning, with a very bit adjustment in Photoshop. Digital needs long time in Photoshop and forces to learn and try new digital techniques in Photoshop, this is a new profession which require computer skills and can be outsourced, but not for free.

4. Film is cheap. Film does cost per frame and development. Digital requires all modern software, hardware, upgrades, etc. Film equipment can last for years, while owners of digital equipment, especially DSLR, will want to upgrade. That's why I don't buy new DSLR.

5. MFDB is superb, but slow to work with. MFDB and 120 films is a great combo. No DSLR is needed, if you don't shoot actions.

I scan with calibrated Nikon 9000 and images look absolutely superb to my eyes. Film development is the headache; I need to drive to another city to develop slide film.

Today in studio I use MFDB tethered to Macbook. Outdoors I take 120 films. MFDB will kill film. DSLR is a junk in comparison.
« Last Edit: January 06, 2009, 01:33:43 AM by evgeny » Logged
redbutt
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« Reply #5 on: January 06, 2009, 02:15:31 AM »
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Quote from: evgeny
MFDB will kill film. DSLR is a junk in comparison.

I don't think it's fair to say DSLR is junk in comparison.  I shoot with both a MFDB (P20+/Mamiya AFD2) and a DSLR (Canon 1D Mk2).  I use them both for their strengths.  A previous post hinted at this earlier, but each has a benefit, and for example...when I'm shooting live theatre, my MFDB may as well be a paper weight.  There's no way it can keep up with the speed of my Mark2 in a dark theatre.  So, in that context, *it* is junk next to my DSLR in comparison.

This is a thing that I think many people miss in the digital vs. film debate.  There really isn't an apples to apples comparison.  Digital Photography is a different medium than film photography and like any artistic medium, it has strengths and weaknesses, but the right tool in the right hands is a very powerful thing.  Like any new technology (and it's odd to say that given how long digital cameras have been around now) people instantly look for the cons.  I remember vividly sticking my nose right down into a print and thinking...I can see the dots...this isn't that great.  Then I remember the moment that I held a film print and a digital print up together in a realistic viewing situation, and had a really hard time telling them apart.  And, before anyone flames me for this...yes a 6x7 neg blown up to 20x30 will be hard to match with a 35mm DSLR (although, the new 22MP Canon offerings are probably gonna get close).  But, again...not apples to apples, and digital printing has come light years from where it used to be...not just the cameras.  If you are aiming for a 20x30 print, a 35mm film neg is going to be pushing it too.  I guess all this is a long winded way to say, that while film vs. digital debates are fun and stimulating, there's zealots of both sides of the argument, and neither side is 100% correct...yet.

I do agree with you that film will die out, but not because of MFDB.  I think film is doomed because of the digital point and shoot market.  All those vacation pictures that used to be processed on film, are now on CF and SD cards.  That's a HUGE chunk of market share that pretty much leaves only the Pro market using film anymore, which is also dwindling as pros come around to the work flow benefits of digital (and let's face it...the quality of pro digital gear is now really quite exceptional).

Anyway...that's my 2 cents.
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« Reply #6 on: January 06, 2009, 02:58:53 AM »
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Quote from: redbutt
I do agree with you that film will die out, but not because of MFDB.  I think film is doomed because of the digital point and shoot market.  All those vacation pictures that used to be processed on film, are now on CF and SD cards.  That's a HUGE chunk of market share that pretty much leaves only the Pro market using film anymore, which is also dwindling as pros come around to the work flow benefits of digital (and let's face it...the quality of pro digital gear is now really quite exceptional).

Anyway...that's my 2 cents.

Indeed certain films are dying and have died... but hopefully good ones will continue to be produced.

As example B&W film did not die with color neg or color slides. If we take record albums they died because CDs were a superior technology. Digital photos are not such superior to film, but like you say they are different and appear different. Unlike with music... we do find the noise (grain) in prints from film appealing   ...

And... I hope I am right in above...

Anders
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KevinA
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« Reply #7 on: January 06, 2009, 03:26:38 AM »
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Quote from: redbutt
I don't think it's fair to say DSLR is junk in comparison.  I shoot with both a MFDB (P20+/Mamiya AFD2) and a DSLR (Canon 1D Mk2).  I use them both for their strengths.  A previous post hinted at this earlier, but each has a benefit, and for example...when I'm shooting live theatre, my MFDB may as well be a paper weight.  There's no way it can keep up with the speed of my Mark2 in a dark theatre.  So, in that context, *it* is junk next to my DSLR in comparison.

This is a thing that I think many people miss in the digital vs. film debate.  There really isn't an apples to apples comparison.  Digital Photography is a different medium than film photography and like any artistic medium, it has strengths and weaknesses, but the right tool in the right hands is a very powerful thing.  Like any new technology (and it's odd to say that given how long digital cameras have been around now) people instantly look for the cons.  I remember vividly sticking my nose right down into a print and thinking...I can see the dots...this isn't that great.  Then I remember the moment that I held a film print and a digital print up together in a realistic viewing situation, and had a really hard time telling them apart.  And, before anyone flames me for this...yes a 6x7 neg blown up to 20x30 will be hard to match with a 35mm DSLR (although, the new 22MP Canon offerings are probably gonna get close).  But, again...not apples to apples, and digital printing has come light years from where it used to be...not just the cameras.  If you are aiming for a 20x30 print, a 35mm film neg is going to be pushing it too.  I guess all this is a long winded way to say, that while film vs. digital debates are fun and stimulating, there's zealots of both sides of the argument, and neither side is 100% correct...yet.

I do agree with you that film will die out, but not because of MFDB.  I think film is doomed because of the digital point and shoot market.  All those vacation pictures that used to be processed on film, are now on CF and SD cards.  That's a HUGE chunk of market share that pretty much leaves only the Pro market using film anymore, which is also dwindling as pros come around to the work flow benefits of digital (and let's face it...the quality of pro digital gear is now really quite exceptional).

Anyway...that's my 2 cents.

I think film sales have actually increased over the last year or so.I don't think film will go away in the next few years, B&W will be around for ever. Fuji have just made a folding 6x7 camera, I presume they intend to make something to feed it. I've been buying LF equipment, it's so cheap now the latest being an old brass shutter-less lens from about 1890 and I just spent a load of money getting my Makina 67 serviced, oh yes and I buy old box cameras to use all for fun of course. Commercially I shoot digital it makes more sense for my work and turn around needed, I still prefer my film images.
This question is getting asked more and more of late, maybe we just getting a bit disillusioned with the brave new world and all it's baggage.

Kevin.
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hobbsr
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« Reply #8 on: January 06, 2009, 03:29:08 AM »
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Hi All,

A couple of extra points:

1. My D3 is a wonderful camera and enables the ability to shoot where with film you would have some real issues to get the same quality if at all get the image without very fast BW film, so as posted above these are different tools for different applications and it is not trying to compare so much as both capture technologies have their own strengths.
2. I have investigated using my H3D with the film back and was advised that in a firmware revision the H3D will be locked from working with the film backs? Also the cost of a H2F as a new body and the backs is a little stupid compared to what you can buy, I am a very big Hasselblad fan but I don't understand the logic to that pricing. So this really stops me using my great lens that I have with the H3D.

Thanks
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Dustbak
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« Reply #9 on: January 06, 2009, 03:37:02 AM »
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I use H2F with CF digital backs. The way to go with H2F is to buy the body separate from the film backs etc. I do agree the pricing structure of the 'kit' is kind of stupid. Another option is to buy a second hand H1 and have it upgraded to H2F.

I thought the H3D can use film back regardless of the firmware upgrades, eg. use film backs even with the latest firmware update (in that case you wouldn't even have to look at the H2F). The H3DII cannot use film backs anymore.

I might be mistaken with this so maybe one of the Hasselblad guys can chime in here.
« Last Edit: January 06, 2009, 03:38:11 AM by Dustbak » Logged
Let Biogons be Biogons
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« Reply #10 on: January 06, 2009, 06:25:23 AM »
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Quote from: Anders_HK
If we take record albums they died because CDs were a superior technology. Digital photos are not such superior to film, but like you say they are different and appear different. Unlike with music... we do find the noise (grain) in prints from film appealing   ...


Record Albums did not "die"  Record Albums continue to be sold, and are view by many to be superior to CD's.  The analogy is reasonably appropriate.  Both film and vinyl records continue to exist, but only represent a small fraction of the market compared to their digital counterparts, and both have active and vocal support groups that consider them to be better than digital.  I would further indicate that the claimed superiority of both analog forms is due to the way way it "renders" or the way it looks, sounds, or feels, rather than any quantitative measure (there may be things we just don't know how to measure, or what to measure).  For both, they are "different" (smoother, more real, etc.) in a way that is "better", but we can't specifically, accurately, or quantitatively tell you why (mind you they are probably closer to an explanation with vinyl records than with film -- probably because the vinyl-CD wars have been going on for 20 years longer than the film-DSLR war).

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« Reply #11 on: January 06, 2009, 07:27:37 AM »
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I love digital but if there is one thing I wish my DB had, and this has been said before, it's in-camera simulated film types. That way you could decide already at the shoot what kind of look you want, cut down on post production time, and still have the ability to change your mind later. It's amazing that no camera or DB manufacturer (to my knowledge) has picked up on this.

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« Reply #12 on: January 06, 2009, 07:49:40 AM »
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Quote from: amsp
I love digital but if there is one thing I wish my DB had, and this has been said before, it's in-camera simulated film types. That way you could decide already at the shoot what kind of look you want, cut down on post production time, and still have the ability to change your mind later. It's amazing that no camera or DB manufacturer (to my knowledge) has picked up on this.
Picture styles in Canon Cameras can be edited to your own taste and are a fairly good way of getting an instant result. Depends on what film looks you like as to how useful they are for you. I have my 5D set to do a rich slide film with crushed blacks, a Tri-Xy look and a murky sepia.
But I usually end up using a RAW file not the JPEGs as the look I apply in camera is more of a reminder of how I was thinking at time of shoot. But you can add a look very quickly to images in ACR or Lightroom via presets.
« Last Edit: January 06, 2009, 08:04:14 AM by jjj » Logged

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« Reply #13 on: January 06, 2009, 07:59:45 AM »
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Film needs an expensive scanner to get proper quality.  I occasionally shoot with my Mamiya RZ67 and Seagull TLR and using my flatbed the scans are of lower quality than my Canon 1Ds Mark II even if I scan at 3600dpi and then downres the 60MP scan to less than 20MP.  Scanning is also very time consuming and becomes tedious when making multiple passes.  Keep in mind that a decent film scanner costs about $2000 and more if you want ultimate scanning results.  

Without having made a comparison I would assume the 20MP+ backs and probably DSLR are very close in resolution to a good 6x7 film scan.  With the cost of buying a top class scanner in mind and the time needed for the development and scans I think running a business on film is not a good idea.  I'd rather seek for a used MF digital kit or 20MP+ DSLR for my business.  I will still however use my film equipment for fun.
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« Reply #14 on: January 06, 2009, 08:01:43 AM »
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Quote from: amsp
I love digital but if there is one thing I wish my DB had, and this has been said before, it's in-camera simulated film types. That way you could decide already at the shoot what kind of look you want, cut down on post production time, and still have the ability to change your mind later. It's amazing that no camera or DB manufacturer (to my knowledge) has picked up on this.


A digital sensor does not render the same or as consistent as film does. That said I sometimes use www.rawfilmstyles.com for my Aptus 65 (and others) which are presets for CS3 Camera Raw that "simulate" film settings. At moment that website does not come up for me, but I do hope they still are fine and in business because I do like that product! You can try to email info@rawfilmstyles.com if website does not come up. Nope it does not give you film... but it is a shortcut to certain renderings which you may otherwise not be able to reach... at least that is what I found for my photos.

Back to films... apart from Tri-X... lets not forget color slide films such as MAGICAL Fuji Velvia 50 for landscape.... or Provia 100 & 400... surely they must remain for all eternity  

About scanning, when shooting 35mm slides I used a Minolta DiMage SE 5400... that was tedious... because so many frames on 35. With larger formats one tend to shoot less number of frames and at higher yield ratio, simply because the gear makes you slow down and plan better. Images from the DiMage still blew my mind away... much more than the D200 I had ever did. Lets remember that scanner technology also develops... that is one attraction with film, that in future we will be able to get much more from those slides   ...

Anders
« Last Edit: January 06, 2009, 08:11:46 AM by Anders_HK » Logged
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« Reply #15 on: January 06, 2009, 08:20:35 AM »
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Quote from: Anders_HK
A digital sensor does not render the same or as consistent as film does. That said I sometimes use www.rawfilmstyles.com for my Aptus 65 (and others) which are presets for CS3 Camera Raw that "simulate" film settings. At moment that website does not come up for me, but I do hope they still are fine and in business because I do like that product! You can try to email info@rawfilmstyles.com if website does not come up. Nope it does not give you film... but it is a shortcut to certain renderings which you may otherwise not be able to reach... at least that is what I found for my photos.
Web domain has expired, so it may be presumed Raw Film Styles also has. Nothing to stop one playing around with ACR/LR and developing your own presets, that's what I do. You also get abetter understanding of how things work that way too.


Quote
About scanning, when shooting 35mm slides I used a Minolta DiMage SE 5400... that was tedious... because so many frames on 35. With larger formats one tend to shoot less number of frames and at higher yield ratio, simply because the gear makes you slow down and plan better. Images from the DiMage still blew my mind away... much more than the D200 I had ever did. Lets remember that scanner technology also develops... that is one attraction with film, that in future we will be able to get much more from those slides   ...
God, I hated scanning, really hated it, but slide scanners stopped being developed some years back as the film market collapsed - just when scanners were starting to get good. Flat bed scanners have improved a lot though, not sure how they compare to dedicated film scaners. I have a lot of old work I should scan in, but the thought of it  
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« Reply #16 on: January 06, 2009, 01:19:14 PM »
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I know the feeling
I started with film, then studied electronics and informatics, and saw the rise of digital.

Today I use BOTH
DSLR when it has to be fast, cheap or even throw-away photography (when no film cost in budget foreseen ...) and in low light conditions
But I have to admit that at weddings DSLR is a bless for speed and combined with a good zoom lens a live- saver.
I get enlargements done by a lab on durst lambda from a nikon D200 to 1m w 70cm with great results!

MF BW film, when I want traditional black and white (Mamiya RZ and Hasselblad 503CW with Fuji ACROS 100 in Rodinal) then print on Baryta paper with selenium toning (jummy)

MF slides and negs (for the LOOK it has) but processing yourself is EXPENSIVE (chemicals only last 3 weeks !!!)
Only interesting when making prints with an ENLARGER (scanning looses the LOOK in my opinion, or one spends hours at PS to get in back))

MF DB (started with P20, and now H3DII MS) amazing, you cannot get that out of film.
It's different, but it is WOW !

LF (4x5 and 8x10) of NO COMPARE when making black and whites of landscapes and portraits, then go gum bichromate or Platinum paladium) this is another dimension

So for me digital is just another  brush, another colour on my palet !

Digital printing, I use epsons, but consider using the GEMINI package (amazing quality, and ease of use)

As for digital storage ...today disks do not cost that much.
You need to foresee that in 5 years from now, you will have to convert to other formats and migrate other computer platforms. no escape.

In the future, labs will assist you with this.
Labs will process raws for you, and put it on their servers and storage.
You will access by Internet, do you thing, then send it out to print in a lab, somewhere in the World, and will be send to you by mail.(or directly to your client)

Thing is, try to stay an ARTIST, with all the film and digital around.

Use it wise !


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terence_patrick
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« Reply #17 on: January 06, 2009, 04:01:32 PM »
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There are a lot of top notch wedding photographers still using film, so it's not that ridiculous of an idea. Jose Villa is probably the best example I can think of.

One thing you'll have to consider if switching back to film is your pricing and profit margin. Your digital camera upgrades probably come every three or four years if you're not too gear-happy and are kind of a big lump-sum expense, whereas with film, you're probably looking at something close to $45-55 dollars per roll for purchase, process, proof, scan, and delivery (if you're not local to a good lab). So if you're one of those photographers that rail off 1500-2000 shots during a wedding, you'll coughing up quite a bit of cash for each event. You may also need to beef up your insurance if something happens to the film after the wedding.

I bring this up because I've started shooting primarily with film again, after doing digital for the last 5 years and not really *loving* it. Luckily most magazines are okay with it as long as it's part of the signature look when hiring the photographer, but I can't say I'm able to get away with as much profit per shoot as I used to.
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TMARK
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« Reply #18 on: January 06, 2009, 04:38:58 PM »
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Quote from: terence_patrick
There are a lot of top notch wedding photographers still using film, so it's not that ridiculous of an idea. Jose Villa is probably the best example I can think of.

One thing you'll have to consider if switching back to film is your pricing and profit margin. Your digital camera upgrades probably come every three or four years if you're not too gear-happy and are kind of a big lump-sum expense, whereas with film, you're probably looking at something close to $45-55 dollars per roll for purchase, process, proof, scan, and delivery (if you're not local to a good lab). So if you're one of those photographers that rail off 1500-2000 shots during a wedding, you'll coughing up quite a bit of cash for each event. You may also need to beef up your insurance if something happens to the film after the wedding.

I bring this up because I've started shooting primarily with film again, after doing digital for the last 5 years and not really *loving* it. Luckily most magazines are okay with it as long as it's part of the signature look when hiring the photographer, but I can't say I'm able to get away with as much profit per shoot as I used to.

My actual cost for a roll is between $16 and $25.  I mark it up from there, but not much, as most of my clients have accounts with labs.  This is purchase, process, and contacts.  From that point on the client deals with scanning, usually from the same lab that did the contacts.  

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terence_patrick
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« Reply #19 on: January 07, 2009, 02:50:01 AM »
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Quote from: TMARK
My actual cost for a roll is between $16 and $25.  I mark it up from there, but not much, as most of my clients have accounts with labs.  This is purchase, process, and contacts.  From that point on the client deals with scanning, usually from the same lab that did the contacts.

I guess it's different in every market. I'm basing on LA's prices from Samy's which is $6.59/roll of 220 Fuji 160S and Icon which is $28 process/proof, then there's the $47 scan fee for a full roll of 220 in the 6-10mb quality range. Sh*t adds up, but damn it looks good.
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