It was raining in the city by the lake, a hard rain. A hard rain would wash the silver halides off any type of film. I was looking for something or someone for that matter. Someone contacted me about something new hitting the streets. A film stock would deliver the look of those old detective movies from the mid-century. I spent hours in the old one-screen cinema watching these films when I was a kid, growing up on the wrong side of the tracks. He called himself Shadow, Agent Shadow, although, given his love of cloak and dagger, I think the “agent” part was made-up,Read More →

When people hear the name ORWO, they mostly think of their brilliant motion picture films, UN54 and N74. Their newer offerings include the recently announced but yet-to-arrive NP100 and NP400 plus NC500. But that is only a small cross-section of their original offerings. ORWO, or rather ORiginal WOlfen is built in Wolfen, Germany, the original Agfa plant that ended up on the eastern side of the iron curtain and continued to produce films and developers after World War Two through the Cold War. Their films became popular among photographers in East German and the Soviet Bloc. My first experience with ORWO films is one ofRead More →

This isn’t my first experience with Tasma film, I have shot NK-II in the past and their Type 25L. As a company, Tasma or Тасма has been producing photographic products since 1933. The name is a shortened version of Татарские светочувствительные материалы or Tatar Sensitized Materials, and they have carried that name since 1974. Originally operating under the name Film Factory No. 8, the Kazan-based factory continued operations through the entirety of the Soviet involvement in World War II and earned the Order of the Red Banner of Labor in 1944. Following the collapse of the USSR, the company reorganised as a private firm inRead More →

I always enjoy working with a film that isn’t used in everyday photography. And one type of film that I have only limited experience with is surveillance film. Sure I’ve shot with Derev Pan and Streetcandy. But never a Kodak surveillance film. Kodak Plus-X Aerecon II, despite having the name Plus-X, is not related to the normal Plus-X; the data sheet describes the film as a panchromatic, black-and-white negative aerial film having extended red sensitivity and medium speed. This film has a fine grain and relatively high contrast and is intended for medium- to high-altitude reconnaissance. Its ESTAR Thin Base provides flexibility, moisture resistance, highRead More →

If there’s one thing that is always uncertain these days is the availability and quality of photochemistry. At the same time, some companies have had no issues with maintaining their normal level of quality. As manufacturers of the materials and chemistries shift away from the originals, things get a little grey. Thankfully some are willing to take a chance and help keep things going, and one such company is Adox. While most of their chemical offerings are based on formulas from other firms, Rodinal, FX-39, and Atomal spring to mind. Adox XT-3 is a new offering, backwards engineers from Kodak Xtol a well-loved Ascorbic AcidRead More →

It has been far too long since I got together with this amazing group of people in-person since all of this started in March 2020. And while I was unable to make it out to the first meetup since our last meetup in February 2020 (at least it was the largest meetup to date). And through early 2021 there were some attempts at virtual meetups, the fact of the matter is that the TFS group is best served with in-person meetings. Thankfully with things looking far better real meetups kicked off in October with a second meetup taking place at the beginning of the month.Read More →

I have seen Fergus in the past, but it’s only been for a short visit. Whenever I’m in this area, I tend to gravitate more towards Elora, Ontario, because it is a community that I enjoy exploring and can always find something new. But having already visited Elora this year and in this project, I needed someplace new. With the exact concentration of stone buildings from the 19th century and a walking route in mind, it was time to head into a bit of a pocket of the highlands in Ontario. For thousands of years before the arrival of the earliest European settlers, the GrandRead More →

I’ll be the first to admit, I’m a sucker for professional 35mm cameras, and there are two that I’ve always wanted, the Nikon F5 and the Minolta Maxxum 9. While I loved working with the Maxxum 7, the 9 still drew me in just that little bit more. And while the 7 and 9 share many similar features and design cues, the Maxxum 7 to the Maxxum 9 is what the Nikon F100 is to the Nikon F5. All solid cameras, just the 9 and F5, are aimed more at the professional than the advanced amateur. I was sold on the 9 as soon asRead More →