Tag: hc-110

CCR:FRB – Review 05 – Ilford FP4+

CCR:FRB – Review 05 – Ilford FP4+

When I first discovered Kodak Plus-X I was hooked, instantly. But sadly Plus-X went away and while I still scramble to find old stock whenever I can, I can always go to Ilford FP4. Now that’s not to say FP4+ plays second fiddle to Plus-X in my book. In FP4+ I found probably the most versatile film that maintains a level of consistency across the board and formats within in the mid-speed range. Fine grain, sharp, and a contrast to die for. Not to mention a legacy that goes back to when Ilford first started producing flexible films.

CCR:FRB - Review 05 - Ilford FP4+

Film Specs
Type: Panchromatic B&W
Film Base: Acetate
Film Speed: ASA-125, Latitude: 50-400
Formats Available: 135, 120, Sheets

Roll 01 – Kodak D-76
It’s not often that I find FP4+ boring, but in the case of D-76, it is. It’s not a bad combination, there’s just so much more you can do with FP4+ than let it soup in a standard developer. But it still produces a decent negative and everything you like about FP4+ can be found in the negatives I just find the contrast off my just a hair. I actually prefer to soup my FP4+ in the older slower cousin, D-23 with a slight pull to ASA-100 to really show off what the film can do!

HandpaintedA TowerA simple doorA Touch of Modern

Technical Details:
Hasselblad 500c – Carl Zeiss Planar 80mm 1:2.8 – Ilford FP4+ @ ASA-125
Kodak D-76 (Stock) 8:30 @ 20C

Roll 02 – Kodak HC-110
Probably one of my favourite ways to develop FP4+ despite not using the combination often. HC-110 really ramps up the contrast to a pleasing level without anything over the top. You still get the fine grain and sharpness. And the developer does really play to the film’s strengths. While there are some out there who don’t enjoy HC-110 with FP4+ it certainly does work when you don’t have anything else laying around.

Project:1812 - Path To VictoryProject:1812 - Brock's Monument(s)Project:1812 - Fort MississaugaProject:1812 - Brock's Dead House

Technical Details:
Bronica SQ-Ai – Zenzanon-PS 65mm 1:4 – Ilford FP4+ @ ASA-125
HC-110 Dil. B 7:00 @ 20C

Roll 03 – Rodinal
What do you pair a classic film with? A classic developer of course! One of my favourite combos for FP4+ is Rodinal, it brings out everything you like about the film and more. Not only does it make for extremely printable negatives but they scan like a dream with little needing to be done when you’re post-processing the scans. Negatives are sharp, the tone and contrast are dead on the money and while you may find an uptick in the grain in 35mm it’s hardly noticeable in 120 and large format. The film also responds well to stand developing with the tones becoming more like butter and the grain near non-exsistant.

A Limehouse SaturdayA Limehouse SaturdayA Limehouse SaturdayA Limehouse Saturday

Techincal Details:
Hasselblad 500c – Carl Zeiss Planar 80mm 1:2.8 – Ilford FP4+ @ ASA-125
Blazinal (1+25) 9:00 @ 20C

Roll 04 – Kodak Tmax Developer
While I knew of the pushing capabilities of Ilford FP4+, I never thought that TMax developer would be a good choice. But I was kind of forced into it, yet as I pulled the film out I was seriously impressed with the results. Of course, when I mentioned this to fellow podcast host Mike, he laughed and told me that TMax developer is a compensating developer so of course, it would work great for pushing. Well push or no push, TMax does a fantastic job on the film stock.

CCR:FRB - Review 05 - Ilford FP4+ - Roll 04 (TMax Developer)CCR:FRB - Review 05 - Ilford FP4+ - Roll 04 (TMax Developer)CCR:FRB - Review 05 - Ilford FP4+ - Roll 04 (TMax Developer)CCR:FRB - Review 05 - Ilford FP4+ - Roll 04 (TMax Developer)

Technical Details:
Nikon FE – AI-S Nikkor 105mm 1:2.5 – Ilford FP4+ @ ASA-200
Kodak TMax Developer (1+4) 9:00 @ 20C

Final Thoughts
When it comes to film that can take anything you can throw at it and turn around and give you exactly the results you want, then FP4+ certainly ranks among those films. A bullet proof stock that likes every developer you throw at it. While D-76, HC-110, Rodinal, and TMax developer are all solid options. I’ve also souped the stuff in Pyrocat-HD, D-23, SPUR HRX and a wide range of Ilford developers (Microphen, Perceptol, DD-X, Ilfosol 3) and it loves everyone and provides the same consistent results no matter what developer and format you get it in. No questions, no troubles, just amazing photos, that’s FP4+.

CCR:FRB – Review 04 – Kodak TMax 400

CCR:FRB – Review 04 – Kodak TMax 400

When it comes to T-Grained (modern films like TMax and Delta) I can be fairly picky, the 100-speed ones I tend to like while the faster 400-speed ones I can be overly critical about. That being said I’ve found that recently I’ve been warming up to these faster emulsions the more I experiment with them. As with Delta 400, I’ve warmed up a little to TMax 400. Oddly, TMax 400 was the first roll of film I processed on my own under the watchful eye of Julie Douglas back in 2010.

CCR:FRB - Review 04 - Kodak TMax 400

Film Specs
Type: Panchromatic B&W, T-Grain
Film Base: Acetate
Film Speed: ASA-400, Latitude: 50-3200
Formats Avaliable: 135, 120, 4×5, 8×10

Roll 01 – Kodak TMax Developer
It’s only fair that we start the film off right using the native TMax developer. And when it comes to TMax 400 whether you’re using the strong 1+4 dilution or the 1+9 dilution you’ll get excellent results from this film. You can get the upper side of the film’s latitude with the developer and show off the fine grain and sharpness of the film with this developer. And even in 1+9, there’s no real loss of contrast, you get smooth tones across the board without any loss of blacks or whites. Of course, in 1+4, you’ll find a greater level of contrast but it won’t affect grain or sharpness.

Project:1812 - Fort OntarioProject:1812 - Fort OntarioProject:1812 - Fort OntarioProject:1812 - Fort Ontario

Technical Details:
Rolleiflex 2.8F – Carl Zeiss Planar 80mm 1:2.8 – Kodak TMax 400 @ ASA-400
Kodak TMax Developer (1+9) 22:00 @ 20C

Roll 02 – Kodak HC-110
You would think that a high contrast developer would be able to pull out some level of contrast in a film, well here in lies my main issue with TMax 400, in certain developers you just can’t get contrast. Sure I could do this in post-processing but that would be cheating in my mind. That being said, HC-110 and TMax 400 is not a bad combination, you still get the sharpness and fine grain nature of the film, and even with Dilution B, you can still push to film to the top of its latitude with amazing results.

TFSM - Spring '17TFSM - Spring '17TFSM - Spring '17TFSM - Spring '17

Technical Details:
Hasselblad 500c – Carl Zeiss Planar 80mm 1:2.8 – Kodak TMax 400 @ ASA-400
Kodak HC-110 Dil. B 5:30 @ 20C

Roll 03 – Pyrocat-HD
When it comes to developers, if you have talked to me, Pyro developers are a magic bullet. I tend to use it when I what sharpness but desire some grain control so it makes perfect sense for me to use it with TMax 400. Sadly this roll got developed in the dregs of a bottle and was a little underdeveloped. But thankfully due to the power of TMax 400, I could still pull decent images out of the negatives. I found that it produced a very classic look, bright and crispy, and sure enough I actually enjoyed the results while it’s a good option I feel it would be better suited to larger formats (medium and large).

CCR:FRB - Review 04 - Kodak TMax 400 - Roll 03 (Pyrocat-HD)CCR:FRB - Review 04 - Kodak TMax 400 - Roll 03 (Pyrocat-HD)CCR:FRB - Review 04 - Kodak TMax 400 - Roll 03 (Pyrocat-HD)CCR:FRB - Review 04 - Kodak TMax 400 - Roll 03 (Pyrocat-HD)

Techincal Details:
Nikon F5 – AF Nikkor 35mm 1:2D (Yellow-15) – Kodak TMax 400 @ ASA-200
Pyrocat-HD (1+1+100) 11:00 @ 20C

Roll 04 – Kodak D-76
Is there nothing D-76 cannot do? Well, I’m sure there is, but when it comes to TMax films this developer is king because you can push and pull the film to your heart’s content and just dilute to 1+1 and go. My first experience with TMax 400 was souping it in D-76 and I can say you get everything you want out of the film with this developer. I would even hazard saying the film responds better in D-76 than TMax Developer.

CCR - Season 4 - Recording Session 1CCR - Season 4 - Recording Session 1CCR - Season 4 - Recording Session 1CCR - Season 4 - Recording Session 1

Technical Details:
Nikon F90 – AF Nikkor 50mm 1:1.4D – Kodak TMax 400 @ ASA-400
Kodak D-76 (Stock) 7:30 @ 20C

Final Thoughts
While TMax 400 does not remain a favourite film of mine, I really don’t mind it as much as I think I do. I know that sounds weird, but in the end, it just comes down to personal preference. And my preference is for classic/traditional grained films like Tri-X and HP5+ but it’s not a bad film. It’s still sharp, and the grain is super fine even for sharp developers. It works the best for the native TMax developer and does well with the basic as well D-76. While I haven’t developed the film in Pyrocat-HD or D-23 two more present chemicals in my toolkit, I’m sure it would do just fine. But if you want a film you can push to the limit like Tri-X but you want a more modern feel, then TMax 400 is your film.

CCR:FRB – Review 03 – Film Ferrania P30

CCR:FRB – Review 03 – Film Ferrania P30

As happy accidents go, when you’re trying to come up with a new slide film, and you reinvent a classic film from the past, there’s nothing wrong with that now is there? P30 is, at its heart a motion picture film and probably make a great reversal film. While I would have loved to try a roll through Dr.5, the expense of the process and a possibility of it not working makes it hard to decide to send it to them. P30 is Rollei Retro 80s on steroids with a touch of Eastman 5363 thrown in for good measure. The images have a deep chrome feel like you are looking at the world through a red filter.

CCR:FRB - Review 03 - Film Ferrania P30
The Lowdown
Type: B&W Panchromatic
Film Base:
Film Speed: ASA-80, Latitude:
Formats Available: 135 (35mm)

Roll One – Kodak HC-110
For a first impression, I was initially disappointed, the negatives were very thin, there were images, but I would have to push myself in post-processing to pull them out. But when I did, wow, I’m a big fan of a well-developed roll of Eastman 5363. And the results I pulled out were exactly on point. But they also had the quality and feel of images shot through an orange filter, maybe even a red. And the image quality, sharp as a knife, beautiful separation of tones and next to no grain. Personally, I would add an extra 30 seconds to the developing time that might help clean up the negatives.

CCR:FRB - Review 03 - Film Ferrania P30 - Roll 01 (HC-110)CCR:FRB - Review 03 - Film Ferrania P30 - Roll 01 (HC-110)CCR:FRB - Review 03 - Film Ferrania P30 - Roll 01 (HC-110)CCR:FRB - Review 03 - Film Ferrania P30 - Roll 01 (HC-110)

Technical Details:
Nikon F2 Photomic – AI-S Nikkor 35mm 1:2.8 – Ferrania P30 @ ASA-80
Kodak HC-110 Dil. E 7:30 @ 20C

Roll Two – Kodak D-76
When a company says that a developer is ideal for their film stock, listen to them, I am rather impressed with the way P30 handled D-76, the tonality was dead on the money. But I did notice the loss of the orthochromatic feel that I had with HC-110, but it doesn’t affect my view of the film stock. The film retained its fine grain and sharp resolution even in a rather boring developer.

CCR:FRB - Review 03 - Film Ferrania P30 - Roll 02 (Kodak D-76)CCR:FRB - Review 03 - Film Ferrania P30 - Roll 02 (Kodak D-76)CCR:FRB - Review 03 - Film Ferrania P30 - Roll 02 (Kodak D-76)CCR:FRB - Review 03 - Film Ferrania P30 - Roll 02 (Kodak D-76)

Technical Details:
Nikon F5 – AF-S Nikkor 14-24mm 1:2.8G – Ferrania P30 @ ASA-80
Kodak D-76 (Stock) 7:00 @ 20C

Roll Three – Rodinal
While not my favourite, P30 does respond to Rodinal rather well. In fact, I find it knocks back the contrast inherent in the film. It shows off the sharpness and resolution of the film stock, however, it doesn’t make the film sing. I think it would do better with less time maybe drop it back to thirteen minutes rather than the given fourteen. There was something lost in this roll of film.

CCR:FRB - Review 03 - Film Ferrania P30 - Roll 03 (Rodinal)CCR:FRB - Review 03 - Film Ferrania P30 - Roll 03 (Rodinal)CCR:FRB - Review 03 - Film Ferrania P30 - Roll 03 (Rodinal)CCR:FRB - Review 03 - Film Ferrania P30 - Roll 03 (Rodinal)

Technical Details:
Contax G2 – Carl Zeiss Planar 2/45 T* – Ferrania P30 @ ASA-80
Blazinal (1+50) 14:00 @ 20C

Final Thoughts
I like this film, Ferrania P30 combines everything I like about Rollei Retro 80s and Eastman 5363. Rich contrast, sharp images, and a touch of orthochromatic response in the blues. I hope that the fine folks at Film Ferrania don’t stop producing this film and move it beyond an Alpha release and into full production along with their long-awaited slide film and maybe even a return of Solaris. But if you’re a fan of Retro 80s but can’t stand that polyester base, then P30 is the film for you. And in good news, P30 is once again available directly through the Film Ferrania store, you can pick up max orders of 10 rolls. Currently, only the US/Canada shop is open, but the European and Asian shops will open in 2-6 weeks, Europe first (2-3 weeks after North America) and then Asian (2-3 weeks after Europe)

CCR:FRB – Review 02 – Japan Camera Hunter StreetPan 400

CCR:FRB – Review 02 – Japan Camera Hunter StreetPan 400

A modern re-imaging of an Agfa surveillance stock, StreetPan has been a favourite of mine for some time, and it is incredible in 35mm, but it sings in 120. Back when news of Streetpan first dropped, there were plenty of rumours floating around about the source of the film. Many naysayers said that the supply would be limited as it was just repackaged dead-stock. And while many still rail against the film, I for one enjoy shooting the film, and it’s great for street photography, architecture and landscape. Just don’t shoot it for long exposure, it loves the light and doesn’t handle long exposures.

CCR:FRB - Review 02 - JCH StreetPan 400
The Lowdown
Type: B&W Panchromatic
Film Base: Polyester
Film Speed: ASA-400, Latitude:
Formats Avaliable: 135 (35mm), 120

Roll One – Kodak HC-110
My first experience with shooting and developing Streetpan involved HC-110 and since that first point of pulling the roll of film out of the tank, I know that HC-110 is an ideal developer for the film stock. HC-110 give the contrasty punch the film needs to show off the wonderful contrast and fine grain of Streetpan. But don’t let the nature of HC-110 scare you, the developer brings out all the grey scale the film has to offer. While officially there’s only Dilution B listed on the Streetpan Developing chart, you can adjust the times and dilutions to suit your needs from B, E, even F and G can be done just do the right math to get the proper times.

CCR:FRB - Review 02 - JCH StreetPan 400CCR:FRB - Review 02 - JCH StreetPan 400CCR:FRB - Review 02 - JCH StreetPan 400CCR:FRB - Review 02 - JCH StreetPan 400

Technical Details:
Hasselblad 500c – Carl Zeiss Planar 80mm 1:2.8 – JCH Streetpan 400 @ ASA-400
Kodak HC-110 Dil. E 7:30 @ 20C

Roll Two – Kodak TMax Developer
I first turned to using TMax Developer with Streetpan by fellow film photographer and friend Ori. While hesitant at this, I programmed the time into the Massive Dev Chart App. Sadly I never got around to using it. While some might question using a t-grain developer on a film based on a classic emulsion, I am rather impressed! While you don’t gain or lose anything by using the developer I can say having another option for a less than ten minute developing time for this film is a good thing. It knocks the contrast back a bit, but you don’t lose the sharp, fine grain attributes the film. Certainly a good option for developing Streetpan!

CCR:FRB - Review 02 - JCH StreetPan 400CCR:FRB - Review 02 - JCH StreetPan 400CCR:FRB - Review 02 - JCH StreetPan 400CCR:FRB - Review 02 - JCH StreetPan 400

Technical Details:
Mamiya m645 – Mamiya-Sekor C 35mm 1:3.5 N – JCH Streetpan 400 @ ASA-400
Kodak TMax Developer (1+4) 9:00 @ 20C

Roll Three – Kodak D-76
While initially unsure about this combination as the negatives were dark coming out of the tank. Of course, I soon realised that this is something that does happen with Streetpan, especially with the Dilution B times of HC-110. I would leave my final judgement until after the scan. While not my favourite developer with this film, D-76 doesn’t do a bad job, you still get the rich contrast the film is known for and gives a beautiful chrome look to it, yet the grain is a bit more noticeable. Still, it does a good job. However, I’d give an extra 30 seconds to help bring out the shadows a bit more. Or the meter on my Rolleiflex might finally be starting to die.

CCR:FRB - Review 02 - JCH StreetPan 400 - Roll 03 (Kodak D-76)CCR:FRB - Review 02 - JCH StreetPan 400 - Roll 03 (Kodak D-76)CCR:FRB - Review 02 - JCH StreetPan 400 - Roll 03 (Kodak D-76)CCR:FRB - Review 02 - JCH StreetPan 400 - Roll 03 (Kodak D-76)

Techincal Details:
Rolleiflex 2.8F – Carl Zeiss Planar 80mm 1:2.8 – JCH Streetpan 400 @ ASA-400
Kodak D-76 (1+1) 10:30 @ 20C

Roll Four – Rodinal
Rodinal is one developer that I have given up on in the past and returned to once again and this second time around I’ve found that there is a lot that it can do. And when it comes to Streetpan, it is equal in my books to HC-110 for souping this film. Despite being a 400-speed film, you don’t notice any real uptick in grain, and the contrast is spot on, if not slightly better than HC-110. It doesn’t matter if you use 1+25 or 1+50, there is little difference in the negative, save slightly less contrast with the lower dilution.

CCR:FRB - Review 02 - JCH StreetPan 400 - Roll 04 (Rodinal)CCR:FRB - Review 02 - JCH StreetPan 400 - Roll 04 (Rodinal)CCR:FRB - Review 02 - JCH StreetPan 400 - Roll 04 (Rodinal)CCR:FRB - Review 02 - JCH StreetPan 400 - Roll 04 (Rodinal)

Technical Details:
Rolleiflex 2.8F – Carl Zeiss Planar 80mm 1:2.8 – JCH Streetpan 400 @ ASA-400
Blazinal (1+25) 10:30 @ 20C

Final Thoughts
Streetpan is a black & white film for this hybrid era, the polyester base lies flat on your scanner, and the range of this film lets you pull out incredible detail in a digital editor. How well this film prints in a traditional darkroom I have yet to determine but I hope to let you know soon. Personally, my choice of developers are HC-110 (especially dilution F), Rodinal, and TMax Developer. While I haven’t tried the film in something like Pyrocat-HD or D-23, I feel the film would respond well to Pyro. Good thing I have two rolls left for experimentation. For outdoor shooting, this film is beautiful because it loves the light. I have tried it indoors with poor results. It might have something to do with the unknown reciprocity failure variable or the increased red sensitivity inherent in the film. But for photographers who do a lot of outdoor portrait work and street photography, Streetpan is something new and different. You can pick up Streetpan directly from the JCH Store additionally for my Canadian readers, you can pick StreetPan up at Downtown Camera in Toronto or BuyFilm.ca!

CCR Review 77 – Zenza Bronica EC

CCR Review 77 – Zenza Bronica EC

Anyone who has read these reviews from the beginning knows I have a bit of a conflict with Bronica cameras. It’s not that they’re bad cameras, it’s just that for me there are too many small issues, minor annoyances that make me shy away from them. And the Bronica EC is no different, but it does come to the same point of almost earning a recommendation from me as the GS-1 does. At first glance, the EC has the look of an overgrown Kiev 88, a mechanical beast. However, that is far from the truth. As the EC in the name suggests, the camera is electronic, reliant on all operations on a battery. It’s big, it’s heavy, and continues the tradition of being a polarizing camera in my hands. Thanks to Donna Bitaxi for loaning it out for a review.

CCR Review 77 - Zenza Bronica EC

The Dirt
Make: Zenza
Model: Bronica EC
Type: Single Lens Reflex
Format: Medium Format, 120, 6×6
Lens: Interchangeable, Bronica S-Mount
Year of Manufacture: 1972-1975

CCR Review 77 - Zenza Bronica ECCCR Review 77 - Zenza Bronica EC

The Good
Those who like Bronica cameras love ’em, those who dislike them, shy away pretty hard. But the Bronica EC does have some good talking points. The first is a feature that isn’t even made by Bronica, but rather it’s the optics. If you’ve seen the photos on Flickr or glanced at the technical details, the optics are still made by Nikon. This is before the Zenza/Nikon split in the 1980s. And what a lovely piece of glass, now I only tested out the massive 50mm lens, and I can say I am impressed but not surprised. If you have a set of AI-S lenses for your 35mm cameras, then you won’t be disappointed by the Nikkor lenses that come in the Bronica S-Mount. But what’s good glass without a good viewfinder? And I have to say, the waist level finder on the EC is certainly one of the better ones I’ve worked with, I would even rate it higher than that on my Hasselblad 500c, even with a f/3.5 lens on the front. Combine that with a magnifier loupe that has almost 100% coverage and big enough to shade any stray light. When it comes to camera operation there is a certain satisfaction with the camera, the WLF opens and closes with only one hand, the shutter speed dial is big, and the camera is far lighter than you’d expect. The film advance is smooth, and the shutter makes a satisfying noise. And if you’re familiar with how to load and unload film from a Mamiya m645, you can rock the Bronica EC.

CCR Review 77 - Zenza Bronica ECCCR Review 77 - Zenza Bronica EC

The Bad
You’re probably wondering at this point, why I can’t recommend this camera after speaking on several awesome points of the camera. Well, like all Bronica’s it’s the little things that get me. The first problem is age, I will always knock cameras from the 1980s that have electronics, but this is a camera from 1975, so it’s just that much older. And the older some electronics get, there’s more a chance of them failing. And many repair shops that still work on film cameras will avoid Bronica cameras like the plague. And yes, while I was out shooting, the camera conked out for a bit before coming back to life. The second big issues I have with the camera is the film magazine. I could not figure out how to take it off the camera body, and if you’re in a situation where you need to hot-swap, well there’s a chance you need more than two hands to achieve the goal, like many other actions that relate to the loaded film. I can understand the extra level of safety, but I can pop the magazine of my 500c on and off with one hand. The other issues I have are more along the lines of head-scratchers when it comes to the design of the camera. The first is the presence of a cold shoe, on the side of the camera. I cannot for the life of me figure out why it’s there. Personally, I wouldn’t mount a usual off-camera flash on it, with it sticking off the side it would make the camera rather unwieldy. The only thing that could work would be a slim radio transmitter. And speaking of flash, I can’t see why they would put a focal plane shutter, in the era when many such cameras operated on leaf shutters allowing for many different shutter sync speeds, rather than just one, in the EC’s case 1/60″. And finally, the battery compartment placement on the bottom of the camera, meaning you’d have to dismount any tripod foot to replace the battery.

CCR Review 77 - Zenza Bronica ECCCR Review 77 - Zenza Bronica EC

The Lowdown
The Bronica EC isn’t a bad camera; I mean that. But I still cannot, in good conscience, recommend it. While there’s a chance, you’ll get one in prime condition, and it will serve you well. But there’s still that chance it’ll fail and an inopportune time, and you won’t have a repair shop that can fix it. While I wouldn’t put this camera against a Hasselblad, it does provide a cheaper alternative to it, but again I have not seen many on the used market. And now you see my paradox with Bronica, I want to like them, tell people, yes this is a good camera, but there’s just enough wrong to make me go no, save the money and find a good deal on a Hasselblad.

All Photos Taken in Cheltenham & Limehouse, Ontario
Bronica EC – Nikkor-H 1:3.5 f=50mm – Kodak Tri-X Pan @ ASA-320
Kodak HC-110 Dil. B 5:30 @ 20C

Return of the FP4Party

Return of the FP4Party

Well, looks who’s back! It’s the FP4Party! This time around I have no outstanding projects so unlike in the final FP4Party I can actually work hard on this one, unlike the last time I gave a rather lack-lustre performance. I sat down early and planned out my week, collecting five ideas of where to shoot and what I wanted to shoot with. The film, of course, a favourite of mine, Ilford FP4+. I came up with one roll of 35mm, three rolls of 120 and a box of 4×5. Now in the past, I’ve usually stuck to one day of shooting for these parties. But after the third month of the Delta Def Jam, I realized it can be a lot more fun to get out there and shoot over the course of the whole week and really get into the event. I wasn’t going to let the weather stop me and managed to get a solid seven days of shooting! The final count is 20 sheets of 4×5, all three rolls of 120 and then a roll of 35mm. With a bit of planning, I had everything processed in three days and three days worth of scanning and post-processing.

Day One – White Christmas – Oakville
It might be the first week of December, but for me, the Christmas season is in full swing. So why not head down to lovely downtown of Oakville, Ontario. Beautiful old homes and 19th Century charm to go with the large Christmas tree in the middle of the downtown. It helps me dream a little bit of a White Christmas. Plus it gives me a chance to escape from work just a little bit.

AD 1877StarbucksClean Lines

Day Two – If It’s Love – McCraney Valley Park
When you work in IT and also have a love of Photography, and you have access to plenty of amazing spots to take photos. Including one that has appeared many times in my work, McCraney Valley Park, located just behind the Sheridan Trafalgar Campus. But unlike many other times I’ve photographed this little gem, I made a point to get in close, shooting nothing beyond f/16 just to show off the nice out-of-focus areas that my large format lenses can produce. If it’s love, why not shoot with it! I decided to stand-develop this film, while not my usual method its one that’s been coming back into my technique drawer.

Organic By NatureThe Claw!A Gently Running Stream

Day Three – Empty Streets – 4th Line/Omagh
If you look hard enough around the rural areas of Oakville and Milton you’ll discover that there are lots to explore. From the empty streets of the 4th line, now Glenorchy Conservation Area, to empty farmhouses in the village of Omagh. Not everything has been knocked down. While the 4th Line was shot at the noon hour, the abandoned buildings were better lent to the dying light of the day. Nothing like a seven-minute exposure in minus seven-degree celsius weather. But totally worth it!

The Old Road16 Miles The Robertson FarmThe 5th Line Farm

Day Four – Rather Be – Milton
For a few years, I did my hardest to escape my hometown. Of course this was all in vain, because I was never meant to leave when I wanted to, and today, by the Grace of God alone, my staying has been a blessing for me, as by staying I met my future wife, fell in love, got married and now there’s no place I’d rather be.

Brick and StoneStone CottageSt. Pauls

Day Five – River Constantine – Limehouse
While the river that once powered a mill and the lime kilns at Limehouse is no River Constantine, it still provides a quiet place to sit, walk, and enjoy the deepness of winter and nature. Not to mention it’s a rather a rather special place for me and my wife.

A Limehouse SaturdayA Limehouse SaturdayA Limehouse Saturday

Day Six – Beyond the Veil – Erin
The small town of Erin is another gem along an old provincial highway, now often missed because of freeways. But if you look Beyond the Veil of speed, and just want a lazy drive with a comfortable place to stop, walk, and enjoy then maybe take a scenic route.

Downtown ErinDowntown ErinDowntown Erin

Day Seven – Winter Wonderland – Belfountain
Well we’ve reached the end point of the party and if you’ve been tracking my locations on the map you’ll see I’ve moved from south to north and found myself in my favourite Winter Wonderland, that of Belfountain. I first learned of this little quiet area thanks to Bill Smith, and if I remember correctly I ran into him once in the quiet winter. Officially, the conservation area is closed in the winter, but you can still access it. Not to mention the beautiful little village that surrounds the area. Sadly by the start of December, it wasn’t much of a winter wonderland, but still a good spot!

AntiquesThe CascadeThe Village Church

Thank you for partying on with me as we journeyed through Ontario using one of my favourite film stocks that is still produced. Ilford FP4+, in a previous entry you’ll see that FP4+ is going to play a big roll in the new year as the film of choice for the Project:1867 – Acts of Confederation Project which kicks off in a couple weeks!

Technical Details:
Day One – Downtown Oakville, Ontario
Mamiya m645 – Mamiya-Sekor C 150mm 1:3.5 N – Ilford FP4+ @ ASA-125
Kodak HC-110 Dil. B 9:00 @ 20C

Day Two – McCraney Valley Park Park – Oakville, Ontario
Pacemaker Crown Graphic – Schneider-Kreuznach Symmar-S 1:5.6/210 – Ilford FP4+ @ ASA-125
Blazinal (1+100) 60:00 @ 20C

Day Three Pt.1 – Glenorchy Conservation Area, Formerly 4th Line, Oakville, ON
Pacemaker Crown Graphic – Fuji Fujinon-W 1:5.6/125 & Kodak Ektar f:7.7 203mm – Ilford FP4+ @ ASA-64
Pyrocat-HD (1+1+100) 8:00 @ 20C

Day Three Pt.2 – Omagh, Ontario
Pacemaker Crown Graphic – Fuji Fujinon-W 1:5.6/125 – Ilford FP4+ @ ASA-100
Kodak D-23 (Stock) 6:00 @ 20C

Day Four – Downtown Milton, Ontario
Nikon FA – AI Nikkor 28mm 1:3.5 – Ilford FP4+ @ ASA-100
SPUR HRX (1+20) 9:30 @ 20C

Day Five – Limehouse Conservation Area – Limehouse, Ontario
Hasselblad 500c – Carl Zeiss Planar 80mm 1:2.8 – Ilford FP4+ @ ASA-125
Blazinal (1+25) 9:00 @ 20C

Day Six – Downtown Erin, Ontario
Rolleiflex 2.8F – Carl Zeiss Planar 80mm 1:2.8 – Ilford FP4+ @ ASA-100
Kodak D-23 (Stock) 6:00 @ 20C

Day Seven – Belfountain, Ontario
Pacemaker Crown Graphic – Fuji Fujinon-W 1:5.6/125 – Ilford FP4+ @ ASA-64
Pyrocat-HD (1+1+100) 8:00 @ 20C

CCR Review 74 – Nikon FE

CCR Review 74 – Nikon FE

When it comes to classic cameras, there’s a specific look that will always be connected to Nikon. From the massive metered prisms of the F and F2 and the red strip that remain with the cameras to this day first introduced with the F3. But in the 1970s a certain touch of class entered the Nikon line, clean, simple, sharp. Pure photography as Nikon touts in their advertisements for the Nikon Df, which oddly enough is based around the camera under review, the Nikon FE. The design of the FE and it’s mechanical cousin, the FM, remained so popular the design lasted for several more models before production switched to Cosina where they took on a more modern Nikon look complete with the red stripe. The FE remains a solid shooter even today with a semi-automatic aperture priority electronic (hence the E in the name) camera with full manual function on top of it, and it fills in a small gap in my Nikon kit between the F2 and FA.

CCR Review 74 - Nikon FE

  • Make: Nikon
  • Model: FE
  • Type: Single Lens Reflex
  • Format: 135 (35mm), 36x24mm
  • Lens: Interchangeable, Nikon F Mount
  • Year of Manufacture: 1978-1983

CCR Review 74 - Nikon FE

CCR Review 74 - Nikon FE

The Good
The strongest feature on the FE is in its simplicity, having on a few dials to run the camera operations in a well laid out manner. A dedicated on/off switch with a pull out on the film advance lever. And that film advance, nice and short that allows for quick shooting. And don’t let the small size of the camera body, it has a decent weight and balance. I’d put the FE up against an OM-2 for size and functionality. While the viewfinder isn’t the brightest out there, that honour goes to the FE2, but the viewfinder is one of the best I’ve seen. A clear display of shutter speeds along the one side that makes the automatic mode easy as the shutter speed is indicated by a needle. And when you’re in manual mode, you simply match a needle to the indicated shutter speed. A modern version of my favourite match needle system. And the camera has a good meter in it to boot, centre-weighted and dead accurate.

CCR Review 74 - Nikon FE

CCR Review 74 - Nikon FE

The Bad
There is one lone issue I have with the Nikon FE. It’s not that it’s an electronic camera that requires a battery to operate fully, I knew that when I got the camera. Like many electronic cameras of the age, they came with a mechanical mode with a single shutter speed. That’s not the problem either; it’s the selected speed to make the mechanically fixed speed, 1/90th of a second. It just doesn’t make sense to me. The camera would be far more useful in mechanical backup if the speed were 1/125th makes it easy to run with Sunny-16! Thankfully the camera is not a battery hog, and the spares are pretty easy to acquire so having a couple in the bag wouldn’t be too much of an issue.

CCR Review 74 - Nikon FE

CCR Review 74 - Nikon FE

The Lowdown
Having shot the Nikon FM2n in the past I took to the FE immediately. It also reminds me of my third camera, the Minolta X-7a. For a first camera, this camera is great for anyone, style and class, second to none. With access to every Nikon lens out there from the early Auto-Nikkors to AI and AI-S (including AF-D), you have a solid camera that really won’t let you down. And while they carry a decent price-tag on the used market you can have one for between 80 to 200 dollars, and even in rough shape, the camera will still work. And while you can get a two-toned chrome/black, I’d go with an all black one; they look better in my opinion.

All Photos Taken in Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Nikon FE – AI-S Nikkor 50mm 1:1.4 – Bergger BRF 400 Plus @ ASA-400
Kodak HC-110 Dil. E 10:30 @ 20C

I Will Remember

I Will Remember

Here, at the end of history, we know that the war that is The Great War would only last one more year until on the 11th day of the 11th month at the 11th hour the guns across Europe would fall silent. But one hundred years ago they did not know that.

Least We Forget

The men and women who served, in another 100 years will they names be read aloud by the public? Will their names still be remembered? Will our grandchildren know of the sacrifice of those who died 200 years before? Will there be the same fanfare of sober celebration?

In Memorial

I don’t know about then, that’s the future, I’m here now, and I know that I will remember. And I take my duty actively to make sure the generation after me remembers as well.

Least We Forget

Because if I forget, how can the future remember?

DO:T 2017 - Church of the Redeemer

All the photos featured here were taken in 2017 of war memorials I have photographed in my travels. The icon on social media is a simple 3D replica of a carving found in the tunnels beneath Vimy Ridge in France. I hope you, dear reader, take the time to attend a ceremony tomorrow or take a moment to be silent and remember at 11 am. If you need to know where you can attend such a ceremony in Ontario, you can find the details on the Ontario Government Site.

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old;
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.
We will remember them.

Technical Details (From Top to Bottom)
Cambridge, Ontario – Downtown Galt
Pacemaker Crown Graphic – Kodak Ektar f:7.7 203mm – Rollei RPX 25 @ ASA-25
Kodak HC-110 Dil. B 5:00 @ 20C

Toronto, Ontario – Kew Gardens
Nikon FA – AI-S Nikkor 50mm 1:1.4 (Yellow-15) – Efke KB 100 @ ASA-100
Pyrocat-HD (2+2+100) 8:00 @ 20C

Oakville, Ontario – Georges’ Square
Nikon F5 – Lomography Achromat 64mm/2.9 (Orange-22) – Efke KB100 @ ASA-100
Kodak D-23 (Stock) 7:45 @ 20C

Toronto, Ontario – Church of the Redeemer
Nikon F5 – AF-S Nikkor 70-200mm 1:2.8G VR – JCH Streetpan 400 @ ASA-400
Blazinal (1+25) 10:30 @ 20C

Five Rolls – A Journey of HP5+

Five Rolls – A Journey of HP5+

If you’ve ever listened to me talk about film, you’ll know there are some films I have a strong view. I love my Kodak Tri-X and JCH Streetpan 400; then there are the ones I’m not too happy with, that is Ilford HP5+ in 35mm and Delta 400 in general. But what if I could change my mind on just one? Would it give me another tool in the kit to use to get a specific look? Could I shoot four rolls of a film stock and come to like it, even go as far as recommending it? Challenge Accepted.

That film isn’t Delta 400, I don’t think I’ll ever grow to like the stock actually I just developed Delta 400 in Kodak D-23 and it turns out it’s not a bad film stock either, but I feel HP5+ can be one that I just might be able to. So I’ll give it a shot, get five rolls of the stock, load it up into trusted cameras, visit suitable locations, and then pick developers I’ve never used with 35mm HP5+ and go to town.

Roll One: SPUR HRX
I got the idea of using SPUR HRX after looking on Flickr after Tony posted a question on the Toronto Film Shooters Group. Tony had asked for developer recommendations for HP5+ and Mike suggested SPUR HRX. To be fair in this case, I also pushed the film a little bit more than an average day of shooting. I shot the roll indoors in a sort of abandoned, or rather closed campus of Sheridan College. I figured, if I’m going to learn to like the film, I might as well take it into a familiar situation for me.

Registrar

Bravo Six

Leftovers

The Moody Darkness

The results they speak for themselves, the images are dark, moody, and the contrast is rich. Not surprising given the lighting conditions. I did note that there a more substantial grain pattern, but using a sharp developer on a 400-speed film will do that, but it isn’t anything worth complaining.

Roll Two: Pyrocat-HD
When in doubt just run with a Pyro developer. I started working with Pyro based developers after seeing some of the amazing work Mat Marrash has been doing with HP5+ in 8×10 and this developer. Having some early morning light in Toronto, I loaded up the roll into my trusty Contax G2 and went to town!

Toronto - September 2017

Toronto - September 2017

Toronto - September 2017

Toronto - September 2017

When I pulled the negatives out of the tank, I noticed something different, something I had only seen with Kodachrome. Yes, the layers of exposure on the film had a relief to them, as if the silver had been hand etched onto the film base itself. And then into the scanner and you saw this clean three-dimensional image, smooth tones and no grain at all.

Roll Three: Kodak D-23
One of the first developers I ever used was Kodak D-76, it was at the time the preferred developer of my teacher Julie Douglas. While I have only used a single jug of the stuff since, I have latched onto its cousin, the slower acting D-23. I’ve souped plenty of film stocks in it and like how it makes Tri-X look, so I figured it would be a good candidate.

Nature Trail...

Roughing It

Taking on the CRAIG

Take a Seat

I really liked D-23, it performed as I expected it would give the usual smooth tones all the way through the grayscale. Indeed an excellent choice for the film. I’m now hankering to try this with medium and large format versions of HP5+.

Roll Four: Kodak Microdol-X
I happened across this developer completely by accident during my 52-sheet project and came to enjoy using it. While an older Kodak developer again, and not available under the Kodak name, but Legacy Pro has their Mic-X which is the same. Microdol is a fine grain soft developer so it should be able to work a bit of magic.

The Masons

Back to the War

Lighting the Way

Pick Me Up

I honestly don’t know what went wrong with these photos. They all seemed overexposed. The camera, my Nikon F5 has a solid meter, the ASA/ISO setting was correct. Maybe it was the Orange-22 filter I used or the harsh sunlight. I had to work some post-processing magic on these. I think that I need to reduce the developing times by 1 minute or give the film a slight pull to make Microdol-X work.

Roll Five: Kodak HC-110
When you’re having trouble with something, how about going back to an old friend. Kodak HC-110 is one of two developers I have not stopped using since I started developing my own black & white film. The other is Rodinal, but not wanting to give the film one hell of a pull, I figured HC-110 in the standard Dilution B would be a good way to help out.

Blown Open

Eroded Away

Follow the Rails

Sun Dappled

HP5 sings with HC-110, you get to see how sharp the film stock is with this Kodak developer, and the contrast is dead on point even in the strange lighting conditions that are a sun-dappled forest at high-noon. While not exactly the best time to be out shooting it provides a real test for what a film and developer can do, and HC-110 is a sure winner in this case.

When I first set out to shoot these five rolls of HP5+ I went into it thinking I didn’t like the film stock in 35mm, however, upon shooting these five rolls I realised that I did like the film, I had just had some bad encounters with it in the past. In the end, it’s a solid film stock one that I will use in the future because I won’t always be able to find Kodak Tri-X, and now I have several developing options. I also plan on trying to perfect that Microdol-X time/speed issue.

Technical Data:
Roll One: Sheridan College, Skilled Trades Centre, Oakville, Ontario
Nikon F5 – AF-S Nikkor 14-24mm 1:2.8G – Ilford HP5+ @ ASA-400
SPUR HRX (1+17) 11:00 @ 20C

Roll Two: Toronto, Ontario
Contax G2 – Carl Zeiss Planar 2/45 T* – Ilford HP5+ @ ASA-200
Pyrocat-HD (1+1+100) 9:00 @ 20C

Roll Three: Rattlesnake Point, Milton, Ontario
Nikon F2 Photomic – AI-S Nikkor 50mm 1:1.4 (Yellow-12) – Ilford HP5+ @ ASA-400
Kodak D-23 (Stock) 7:30 @ 20C

Roll Four: Ancaster, Ontario
Nikon F5 – AF Nikkor 50mm 1:1.4D (Orange-22) – Ilford HP5+ @ ASA-400
Kodak Microdol-X (Stock) 11:00 @ 20C

Roll Five: McCraney Valley Park, Oakville, Ontario
Nikon FA – AI-S Nikkor 35mm 1:2.8 (Yellow-12) – Ilford HP5+ @ ASA-400
Kodak HC-110 Dil. B 5:00 @ 20C

CCR Review 71 – Nikon Zoom 500AF

CCR Review 71 – Nikon Zoom 500AF

When it comes to reviewing a point-and-shoot camera, especially one from this era, you have to approach it differently. While many cameras of the era have earned a place in cult camera history, such as Olympus Stylus and Stylus Epic, high-end cameras like the Contax T2 and Nikon 35Ti. And then there are these cameras, the ones that more likely will languish in your family junk drawer or collect dust on the local thrift shop shelf. There’s a good chance that if you’re of a certain age, your parents used a camera similar to the Nikon Zoom 500 AF to capture family vacations and holidays. Released just before the digital storm, the Zoom 500 or Lite Touch 105 if you’re outside the North American Market, was a camera designed for just that. Simple, some zoom, designed to work best with consumer 200 and 400-speed colour films to be dropped off at your local one-hour photo lab. There’s a certain satisfaction to using the camera, simple to use, load, and shoot. Some features that would’ve made my life easier in those early days I was shooting with my family compact camera. Again, thanks to my Uncle Harvey for donating this camera, another one used by his father well after giving up on the Voigtlander!

CCR Review 71 - Nikon Zoom 500AF

  • Make: Nikon
  • Model: Zoom 500AF/LiteTouch Zoom 105
  • Type: Point-And-Shoot
  • Format: 35mm, 36x24mm
  • Lens: Fixed, Nikon Zoom Lens 38-105mm f/3.5-9.2
  • Year of Manufacture: 1995

CCR Review 71 - Nikon Zoom 500AF

CCR Review 71 - Nikon Zoom 500AF

The Good
The cameras of the era, especially those of this time aren’t exactly designed to give one a shooting experience that is exciting. The Zoom 500 is purpose built, to allow everyone to take snapshots without fuss or muss, and this case the camera works perfectly! Easy to shoot, easy to load, controls are well laid out especially the zoom and shutter release. And it’s hard to forget which is which. Another point on the handling of the camera is that there’s a slight lens barrel making it more difficult to stick your finger over the lens. The viewfinder gives you feedback on the zoom of the lens, which doesn’t have a bad range for a point-and-shoot. And the one thing that stands out to me with the viewfinder is the framing lines to help with composing your shots. The one thing I was afraid of when working with the camera is that I kept on turning off the flash as I was outdoors, it was a sunny day, and I was only shooting 100-speed film. To my surprise the results were sharp, some underexposure but not surprising but overall well-exposed images and the quality of the images at every zoom, point surprised me. While chatting after the fact with John Meadows, he noted that Nikon Point-And-Shoots had good optics for the cameras of its type.

CCR Review 71 - Nikon Zoom 500AF

CCR Review 71 - Nikon Zoom 500AF

The Bad
It’s straightforward to blast this camera for the lack of feedback and manual functionality I simply cannot because this isn’t a high-end camera, it’s not designed to be used in that way. So I cannot fault the camera for that. However, the one thing I did find annoying is that it kept asking me to turn on the flash, even though looking at the negatives the exposure seemed perfectly fine. Now while the optical quality of the lens is excellent, it isn’t the fasting glass on the block, nor would I expect it to be. Sure at the 38mm end, the maximum aperture is f/3.5 which is nothing to sneeze at, but when you have it at the full 105mm you’re looking at only f/9.2, I have faster lenses with my 4×5 setup. I also think the placement of the viewfinder could be a little more towards the centre of the camera body to aid in full composition with the aid of guidelines. The way it’s placed now you’re losing a good chunk of your lower right side of the frame. And finally, it suffers from the same problem that many cameras from the 1990s suffered, the CR123A battery. While easy to find in both camera stores, once you get out of major population centres you’ll struggle, at least they have a long life.

CCR Review 71 - Nikon Zoom 500AF

CCR Review 71 - Nikon Zoom 500AF

The Lowdown
You’re better off with a modern digital point-and-shoot camera than shooting with any 1990s point and shoot camera. But if you want something dead simple to get a child or a digital shooter who has no experience with an SLR, there’s something to be said about the Zoom 500. The viewfinder, while not placed ideally has the guides to help with composition, and the hands-off controls make it simple just to get the shot. It lets the shooter figure out composition first and worry about exposure later. In shooting with the Zoom 500, I realised that maybe my family should have looked at Nikon cameras more so than Minolta when we were replacing our old 1980s family camera.

All Photos Taken in Toronto, Ontario
Nikon Zoom 500AF – Nikon Zoom Lens 38-105mm f/3.5-9.2 – Kodak TMax 100 @ ASA-100
Kodak HC-110 Dil. B 6:00 @ 20C