The official photo blog of J. David Buerk Photography.

2014 Year-End Film (More Mamiya Super 23)

This film was due back sooner, but I have it now, after delivery was straightened out.  This is only one roll; as you may know, medium format 120 film only takes 8 exposures, since the frame size is so big (LOVE it!).  If you'd like to know more about the camera I am shooting these on, you should read this post about the camera and the first shots with the Mamiya Super 23 Press Camera, as well as my experimentation with different film labs.  I am totally in love with Richard Photo Lab, so these are more photos processed and scanned by them.

This roll is my first trial with Fuji Pro 400H; shot at box speed.

Here we have the very first portrait shot with this camera; I made sure it was of Mr. Munson, my high school geometry teacher who graciously gave me the camera after his father passed away.

1/15th, 100mm, f/2.8:

Somewhere In My Memory: Winter of 2014

Fuji Pro 400H is daylight balanced, so I knew this tungsten photo would come out yellow, but it's not as orange as I expected; this is a good thing.

Next is Omar; a man I don't see often enough.  Setting up for this photo taught me that I need to make a few changes to my setup for daytime portraits with this camera; I need to A) buy 100ISO or lower film, and / or B) get a few ND or polarizing filters for this camera's lenses.  This was right after grabbing our traditional lunch feast of buffalo wings.

1/500th, 100mm, f/ 11:

Somewhere In My Memory: Winter of 2014

Finally we have David and Spencer.  I brought the camera along on the last leg of their engagement session on the Alexandria waterfront.  The sun had already set, so dusk was well underway, with light fading quickly.  I shot the remaining five frames quickly before moving on to my digital setup with off-camera flashes.  The Super 23 relies on direct lighting to illuminate the focusing reticle - unfortunately it was so dark when I shot these photos, that I couldn't see where I was focusing - all of these photos are back focused... but that's the charm of film: the imperfection.  These photos were for fun anyway, as this was the first time I'd ever used a film camera on a paid shoot, especially since I *knew* I'd get solid photos from the digital, made better with my two-light setup.  I'd use the Super 23 on a paid shoot again, but only during daylight or the golden hour, when there is enough light to properly focus.

You can see the digital photos from this session with David and Spencer here, as well as their later wedding photos.

1/15th, 100mm, f/2.8:

Somewhere In My Memory: Winter of 2014

I do like the blue tones of Fuji 400H, and quite frankly I am more impressed with its tones than the Portra 400 I have traditionally shot with.

Somewhere In My Memory: Winter of 2014

I already have another roll of Fuji 400H loaded into the 6x9 film holder, so I will need to shoot this next, however after that, I want to try a 100ISO film next.  I have always liked the rendering of Provia 100F simulated presets, so that film may be my next experiment.  Velvia has always seemed too saturated for my taste, but that is judging from others' photos - I'd really need to try it myself to make a proper judgement.  Same goes for Ektar, although I'd want to try shooting it again, since it's been several years.

The adventure of medium format film continues...