While today it’s been several years since its introduction, Xtol marks the last developer to come out of Kodak. And as developers go, it is the least toxic of all the ones available on the general market. The reason is that it uses Ascorbic Acid as one of the active ingredients. It not only allows for sharpness but also reducing visible grain in the process. But Xtol is also a developer with a flawed history; you need to mix up a lot to maintain its stability. And while I no longer keep Xtol in my toolkit, it remains a beautiful developer that is perfect ifRead More →

Sometimes it’s good to keep things fresh and new, and having great success hosting a photo meetup in Niagara-On-The-Lake last year and having gotten a connection with a fantastic photographer in the region Bryan who is about a year into his journey into film photography with the offer to host the group I took the chance. Unlike past photo walks, this time, we had three lovely models along. Nat, Millie, and Carolyn, having worked with Bryan in the past came along to give the group a chance to trial their model photography work in a low-key situation. Now I’ve done some model work in theRead 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, it’s just the 9 and F5 are aimed more for the professional than the advanced amateur. I was sold on the 9 as soonRead More →

If anyone has read any of my classic film reviews, you’ll know I have a taste for out-of-production films, especially Kodak Plus-X and Panatomic-X. For several years I’ve participated in an event called Expired Film Day. This is an online celebration of shooting film past its due date and it usually is a single day, the 15th of March, but this year the mind behind it decided to give three days to get out and shoot. In the past, I’ve only gotten out and shot a single roll of film on that day, but now that I had three days to play I could getRead More →

All stories have to start somewhere and to understand everything that happened after the Anglo-American War of 1812 one must learn about how the seeds of the struggles that are to come were first sewn. Pre-Confederation History is a bit of a mess, but there is a single touchstone date where everything stems from, and that is 1791. By 1791, the American Revolution was nearly a decade over, and many who still lived in the former colonies swore loyalty to the British Crown. Many did not wish to remain under a republic, and many Americans did not want these Tories in their country. And inRead More →

If you think you’ve seen this camera before in my reviews, you’d be partly right; the Leica R3 is the cousin of the XE-7, both are internally the same camera with some external differences (also the obvious being the lens mount). The XE marked a new era for Minolta as it introduced the idea of a semi-automatic camera and a confident professional air to their cameras, not to mention a new style of names, the X rather than sticking with the old SR nomenclature. While many companies went with smaller form factors in the 1970s, Minolta stuck with their bulky designs, at least for theRead More →

I remember the first time I encountered a box of Panatomic-X and seeing the film seep of ASA-32, my mind was blown. I had never seen a film slower than ASA-50 (Pan F+). And then I sent it off to the lab to develop it and was even more amazed at the results. Panatomic-X is a fine-grained general purpose film and it seems the slowest of the X-Series of films (Plus-X, Tri-X, Double-X). And what a film Panatomic-X is, while some are hung up on Plus-X, which is itself an amazing film, I’m more a slow film junkie and enjoy Panatomic-X far more than Plus-X.Read More →

When you first lay eyes on the Contax G series of cameras you’re going to wonder to yourself, what sort of camera are these? Are they rangefinders? Are they some kind of digital camera? A dressed-up point and shoot? Well the G Series is sort of both, well it certainly is not a digital camera. But it’s a rangefinder and a dressed-up point-and-shoot, in reality, it’s a camera that’s in a class all of its own, the Autofocus Rangefinder (AFRF). I don’t remember exactly what drew me to the G2 when I first got my hands on the camera back at the end of theRead More →

When my Nikon F80 started to flake out, I needed a replacement, but in those days the Nikon F5 (my grail camera) remained financially out of reach, so I went with the one step down from the F5, the F4. The camera quickly gained my trust as the go-to 35mm camera when I headed out into the field and lasted in my collection for several years before I switched to the Nikon F5 and even then there was overlap. Despite the flaws of the early autofocus, the LCD bleed, and limitations with manual focus and AF-G lenses, the F4 became a constant companion. I knewRead More →