Mamiya RZ Pro II. Portra 400. Fuji Pro 160H. FujiFilm FP-100c.
I have a love\ hate relation with this camera. I love the techie side of it. It's large, full of features, looks beautiful, takes outstanding images and has a great array of lens to be selected from. But, I hate that I consistently miss focus on it. Looking through forums, it seems a common issue among users. Some say using a better focusing glass will enhance brightness and help in nailing focus. I even remember seeing a video interview with the legendary photographer, Annie Leibovitz speaking about this. But, when you indeed nail the focus, the results are outstanding!
We wandered the back alleys of whyte ave and shot on the fly, as the scenery inspired us to do so. It was a chill tuesday afternoon and were greeted by a sunny blue sky. We fled the harsh light and stuck to the shadows offered by the grungy alleys of Edmonton. I remember being extremely nervous at the idea of being in front of the camera, especially with someone I didn't know was around. _mochi was a sport, being really patient with us as we tried to figure out how to shoot someone shooting. As soon as we started, I got in the zone and forgot about the other camera... more or less.
I think the nervousness took the better part of me at certain times and caused me to forget to remove the dark slide of the camera. This resulted in 4 or 5 blank frames. With the Mamiya RZ being a 6 X 7 camera, you only get 10 frames on each roll of 120. Those blanks meant I ended up missing 1\3 of the content i needed to compliment the shot video. Thankfully, the polaroids we shot complemented nicely the 120 pictures.
In Edmonton, there are no film laboratories who process c-41 medium format. Not that I'm aware of. Shipping out to a lab usually means 2 to 3 weeks wait before receiving negatives. I usually don't mind the wait. But, this meant I couldn't process the film quickly enough to be able to dish out videos on a consistent basis. Shooting black & white is not a problem, since I'm pretty used to developing it by now. But, colour is a whole other beast from what I'm told. In any case, a fellow photographer found some extra chems while cleaning his basement and gladly sold it to me. Process this film was even more nerve wracking than shooting it. If I messed it up, the footage would be useless. Thankfully, once I saw those nice thick negatives come out of the tank, I knew all was not lost. I even filmed the whole process, but in the end, I though it would be best not to show this. I still need to get used to talking in front of a camera. The scans revealed some weird colour cast in skin tones. But, I was sort of expecting that. I pretty happy with how they turned out.
The negatives of the FP-100c have some kind of ink on the back, preventing them from being able to be scanned. You can, although, remove that film by brushing it off with some bleach. There are many tutorials out there showing you how to do so. Most of them so it with some kind of gel bleach. I just dip an old toothbrush in some liquid bleach and brush the back untill the black gunk is removed. I don't fully remove it, which gives off this sort of white framing around the image. I think the bleach probably messes with the colours, which can cause discoloration, desaturations, hue shifts, etc... I like the unpredictability of the whole process and don't mind the "quality loss". Funny note, in the video you can see me being somewhat embarrassed at missing the exposure resulting in the image being severely underexposed. I really like how the scan of the negative turned out.