It was my mum’s birthday last week Monday, on the 31st January. I bought her a bouquet of tulips, also a nice birthday card. She did eventually get more flowers, cards plus some cake and a bottle of Prosecco. Sadly we didn’t go out to celebrate as I was working. Maybe soon, as I could make it up for my mum.
I got my third (and hopefully last) vaccine last month. I had the Booster, like the first one it was Pfizer. I would soon learn that my second dose was AstraZeneca, hence why I had a reaction to it shortly afterwards.
Melissa, my friend on WordPress – also Twitter and Instagram, mailed me some expired film from a few weeks back: Fuji C200 and Lomography Purple Monochrome in 120. It has been a loooong time since shooting with those films and it would be nice to experiment with them. Possibly they could be on the next Tried and Tested Thursday post?
I finally bought a new laptop for the first time in a decade. It is a HP Pavilion, pre-installed with Windows 11, Microsoft Office, Cloud and security. It’s lightweight to carry, in comparison to the other previous laptops I’ve had. My Macbook Pro had been playing up recently, as it was slowing down and an upgrade was necessary. At the moment, I am using both laptops. To cut a long story short: my Macbook has the scanner installed, printer and Photoshop CS5, so I am not letting it go just yet.
Select 21 was a wrap!! It ended last month on a high. A couple weeks ago, there was an artists’ talk through Zoom with the participating artists, minus one who had Covid. This gave us the chance to showcase our exhibiting work and talk in depth about it. I said my piece on the Petrol Station Series, which I am proud of til this day. Of course, I was all over the place with nerves. After going through delays and setbacks for over a year, Select 21 was a success met with many positive feedback and praise.
I went on a hiking trip on Saturday with a Meetup group called Outdooraholics. It was my second outing with them. We went to Lullingstone Castle and Country Park, although initially started from the town of Otford in Kent, soon making our way there – it was a ten mile walk (or 16 kilometres). We went across fields, hills and woods, even horses. I will be hiking with the group again this Saturday in Guildford, going through the North Downs and River Wey.
Note: Tonight’s post came later than expected due to technical difficulties. My sincere apologies
For today’s Tried and Tested Thursday, I will be talking about shooting an expired roll of Kodak Pro Image on a Canon Z135.
A match made in heaven with a simple Point and Shoot and an expired Kodak roll. What could possibly go wrong? Well nothing much, apart from the fact it took me a long while to scan the negatives, which I did happen to do yesterday before writing this blog post longhand. Thankfully the process didn’t take too long.
This was the first time shooting the Pro Image on the Canon Z135. My second time would be later on in 2021, when away in Bognor Regis, although the film was pushed to a stop from 100 to 200.
For shooting, I went around my local area to a couple of parks and walked through a few quiet residential streets. Normally if I have no or little inspiration whenever out with the camera, I would take photos of random things and see where it goes from there. Sometimes it would take me a while to get the film(s) developed or scanned, depending whether I want to see the outcome.
I had used Pro Image before on my Canon EOS 500n SLR, mainly for street shots and candids. The film came from the same original five pack, expired in January 2020 and bought from Analogue Wonderland. I wanted to test out the Pro Image on a smaller, simple and sufficient camera like the Canon Z135 to see if there were any comparisons between the SLR.
As expected, some expired film can vary in results, especially colour. Fortunately there were no significant changes or shift in the frames after both processing and scanning; the consistency was the same and smooth, particularly both colour and tones. This film is suited for daylight photography due to its low speed, although I’m guessing it’s possible to chance it with night or low light shooting – I have done this before, with good enough results.
Kodak Pro Image goes hand-in-hand for both street and nature photography, despite this film is mainly for shooting portraits. Pro Image can certainly deliver the goods, plus it caters to wider photographic genres and styles. Not to mention, it’s very useful on Point and Shoot cameras, and film SLR’s, or a Holga (only if a 35mm adapter is used).
For now, I have two remaining rolls left in the drawer, waiting to be inside another camera again. Maybe another manual setting camera…
For today’s Tried and Tested Thursday, I will be talking about shooting a roll of expired Fuji Superia Xtra 800 on the Olympus Mju 1.
The Superia 800 was originally a Film Friday in late 2020, an eBay buy plus expired nearly fifteen years ago. Not to mention, this particular Superia (also the 400 ISO) has now been discontinued by Fujifilm, it is nowhere to be seen through online retailers, with the chance of possibly floating on eBay or similar sites.
My initial plan was to shoot the Superia on my Canonet 28, however the camera’s highest ISO was up to 400. Not all hope was lost, as I would use the same camera for another film, on the same day. So instead I used the Superia on the Olympus Mju 1, a slightly modern camera with automatic settings.
I tested the film at the Victoria and Albert Museum in South Kensington, London. At the time, it had recently been reopened to the public after lockdowns slowly eased in the United Kingdom.
To take advantage of the film’s high speed and grain, I captured a few low light shots in the main part of the museum, mostly the sculptures and statues, some wrapped in plastic. I did use flash in one shot, although I believe it isn’t necessary, and hardly use it. I was confident the outcome from the film would be similar to Kodak Portra 800 or the Lomo CN 800.
Oh, I was very wrong!!
As predicted, expired film can often produce surprising results, depending on how long it has been expired or what condition it has been kept in, especially where stored.
It was difficult to tell if there was a significant amount of colour shift; most frames didn’t come out that well after both processing and scanning. The ones shot in low light didn’t result fairly either, however the stained glass shots were decent enough, all thanks to the LED backlighting.
My time with both film and camera was far from over. After the museum trip, I decided to walk through the local market as it was closing for the day. I began photographing a few shop fronts and market stalls, quite visible and clearer from the negative scanning – a completely whole different comparison to the museum scans, and this is on the same roll!! Yet again, flash wasn’t really necessary, as the built in flash is very bright for night shooting.
The expired Superia wasn’t to my liking, to be honest. I’m glad I got the results and scanned them, since I didn’t want to put them aside or to waste for no reason. I was curious to see its potential outcome, which was certainly not the best of the bunch.
For today’s Film Friday, I selected Kodak Trix in 35mm, which expired in January 2020.
I originally bought the ten remaining rolls from AllPhotos Ltd. via its eBay shop in January 2020, the same month of expiry. The film has been unused, and quietly residing in the infamous ex-kitchen drawer since.
I have been shooting Kodak Trix for years, as it has always been the film I would use for street or architecture photography. Its punchy yet subtle grain is the ultimate icing on the cake, thanks to the film’s speed of 400. The tones and contrasts are great: the black tones being deep, especially the shadows. The Trix is a perfect choice for making prints in the darkroom, which I have done a few times before.
Trix is great to use on colour filters, in particular the red filter. I love using that colour filter, which often produces sharp and deep contrasts, mainly on blue skies and clouds. Having used both the Trix and red filter, it can achieve crisp and high quality results, very rarely disappoints.
Kodak Trix is also Point and Shoot friendly, having shot with it on my Olympus Mju 1 camera was a breeze. No fussing around with the settings or playing around with various apertures, both the film and camera was a suitable combination for simple shooting. The outcome from the Mju 1 was proven to be successful, still achieving the punchy subtle look.
As there aren’t really many significant changes when shooting expired Black and White film, I can only assume it will come out as similar as it was in date, as I have shot many before in both 35mm and 120. There weren’t any signs of shifting in tones or contrasts from them, unlike some expired colour film where it is noticeable.
Who knows? Trix might be up to its ‘tricks’, and surprise me…
For today’s Tried and Tested Thursday, I will be talking about shooting an expired Kodak Ektar on an Olympus XA2.
Today is my birthday and to celebrate, this post is a Throwback of my trip to Mount Rigi in Switzerland. Last year, I posted about my experience going to the mountain, providing photos from my phone. Today’s entry will be photos from my film camera.
Last September I went on a 12 day solo trip to Switzerland, starting from Zurich through to Lucerne and ending in Geneva. I did spend the day in Lugano, sadly it wasn’t enough time to explore the city.
I did bring my Olympus XA2, which I had only for a few weeks at this point. Also I brought along ten rolls of Kodak Ektar – all expired in August 2019, originally purchased a year before from AllPhotosLtd. This gave me the chance to test drive the camera properly while away, since I was confident using it and knowing my way around the settings and functions.
For my day trip I only took one roll with me, I did manage to shoot most of the exposures during my time high up in the mountain. Although, I did take a quick stop at Weggis to take a few photos of Lake Lucerne before going back to take the next boat enroute to Vitznau.
From Vitznau, I took the funicular all the way up to Rigi Kulm. I was even using my camera for my journey up, capturing the views despite feeling so anxious of panicking. Thankfully the ride wasn’t too long and I arrived at the highest peak before I knew it!
Of course, being at the top had its advantages from a photographer’s perspective; endless mountains that go for miles, plus surrounding scenery. The Olympus XA2 had the landscape mode that enabled it to shoot wide angle shots, which was a huge plus as well as on how lightweight the camera was to carry.
The film itself was Kodak Ektar that had expired a year prior. The quality from expired colour film can differ depending on what condition it has been kept in, in some cases there could be little or no colour shift.
After processing the expired Ektar, I was happy with the results. In fact, I was satisfied with them overall. Despite the film’s expiry, the colour quality was still the same as if it was in date – the saturation was there, as well as the bold and smooth tones. Both the greens and blues stood out the most in every shot.
The scans from Mount Rigi are certainly worth printing out in the near future. They have so much potential, as much as I have repeated my desire to go back to the darkroom and start printing in colour again.
I believe these shots can go above and beyond, perhaps produce a zine or a photobook.
I am so pleased with the overall outcome. Probably my best work I had scanned of 2020. There is no need for any improvements or further tweaks or changes, they are simply the chef’s kiss over and over!!
For today’s Tried and Tested Thursday, I will be talking about shooting Kodak Pro Image (expired and pushed) on Canon Z135.
Pushing film has become a favourite of mine recently, since it has a few advantages. From a post not too long ago, I had pushed a roll of Ilford FP4 a stop higher on my Olympus XA2, on my trip to Butlins/Bognor Regis, plus Arundel. Today’s post is from the same trip, but this time in colour on another film and camera. I had brought along four rolls of Kodak Pro Image, which all expired in May 2020, which were all shot exactly a year later (and originally bought around a year prior in 2019). The film was pushed from its 100 speed to 200 when developing.
Kodak Pro Image was a Film Friday earlier this year, expired from January 2020. Unlike the Pro Image used while in Butlins, I had purchased the Film Friday five pack film when it already expired.
The camera used was a Canon Z135, a simple Point and Shoot. I didn’t use it for a while, and I wanted to bring a lightweight camera to carry around, especially for long walks. Great for simple functions and settings, as well as ideal for quick snaps. Sadly, the Canon Z135 doesn’t have a setting to change the ISO, hence why the film had to be pushed when processed.
Once all four rolls were developed, I scanned them on my Epson V550 at home. I was anticipating the results. So my thoughts?
Interesting, very interesting. The quality from the scans weren’t always consistent with the outcome varying, in particular the colour shift.
I think that I played it safe to have all four Pro Image rolls pushed to 200. 400 would have been better, probably for low light shots or night photography.
The beach shots stood out for me the most, although after a time, it did get repetitive shooting them everyday. It was fascinating to see the colour quality differ in each shot from the beach – the blues and beiges weren’t consistent; colours shifting in various contrasts and tones. These are negative scans of course, however the quality might be different when printed in the darkroom, all thanks to manual settings and controls.
The local funfair shots did surprise me the most. As someone who wouldn’t dare to shoot with a film below 400 ISO for night photography (100 speed for the odd occasion), I was impressed with the outcome, mainly the LED lights from the rides. No flash was used as it was late evening, there were surrounding light sources at the funfair, mostly artificial lighting. Fortunately, there was hardly any camera shake when taking the photos.
I have been shooting with expired film for a few years, at times you don’t know what to expect after processing. It can either come out good or bad; in the rare instance, almost blank negatives which have happened to me before… In this case, the expired Pro Image came out better than expected and I am satisfied overall.
I have two Pro Image rolls left, both expired from last year in January. I do hope to shoot them at some point in the near future, maybe on another Point and Shoot like the Canon Z135.
For today’s Film Friday, I selected Kodak Ektar in 35mm, which expired in August last year.
I had bought these before expiry from Parallax, possibly back in 2019. I noticed recently colour film has a shorter expiry date in comparison to black and white film.
I let the four remaining Ektar rolls sit comfortably in the fridge for over a year, slowly approaching its expiry date. I did have a few plans on using them this month for a summer series, but sadly the idea fell through for now due to heavy work commitments.
Shooting with out of date can be exciting, great for experimenting around, especially colour film with the unexpected colour shift and unpredictable results.
I have shot with many expired films throughout the years, some outcomes came out better than I had anticipated, and some with the colour being completely washed out.
Last September, I had ten rolls of Ektar that I took with me to Switzerland, all shot on my Olympus XA2. Originally bought them from AllPhotos Ltd, via eBay, at discounted from the old price.
The results from those rolls were amazing; the colour was saturated, bold and smooth. Mind you the films had been in a drawer for a year after purchase. I had initially thought keeping film in certain conditions would have an effect after developing.
I was so satisfied with the scans (I’m yet to print them from the negatives) that I often admire them, looking at the colour quality – Ektar’s strongest selling point, expired or in date. Possibly the best film outcomes of 2020.
I’m sure the four Ektar rolls in the fridge would produce the same results as the Switzerland ones. I’m confident they will, maybe I could keep them in a little longer until next year?
For today’s Tried and Tested Thursday, I will be talking about shooting an expired roll of Ilford Delta 100 on the Agfa Isolette I.
The Agfa Isolette I was an eBay buy for under ten pounds, which I bought over a year ago. It’s the second medium format camera that I have in my collection, also the oldest camera – it was originally made in Germany in the early 1950s.
The Ilford Delta 100 film expired in May 2000, twenty one years ago!! Last year, I was given a small stash of expired and discontinued films. Most of them expired almost two decades ago, including the Delta film which I shot with quite recently.
I took the Isolette with me to Valentines Park in Ilford on a lovely day in June. I had set the aperture at f8 and the shutter at 1/100, although I do believe it should have been higher at 1/125.
The results after processing and scanning were quite good, considering this film is over twenty years old. There were no clear signs of deterioration, since there was no colour shift because it was a black and white film!!
I scanned almost every single frame from the Delta negatives, as I was pleased with the outcome. As I pointed out earlier in the post, the shutter speed should have been higher at 1/125 with the aperture at f11 or f16. I know I have said a few times on a few posts to buy a light meter, preferably a manual one, however someone left a comment suggesting I download a digital one on my phone via the app store.
The contrast and tones are on point, especially the shadows. Black and white photography is versatile, also forgiving too hence why I often shoot with it and create darkroom prints.
I have to say I’m quite impressed overall. I would definitely consider shooting older expired black and white films again, maybe up to thirty years past expiry. It would be great to experiment around with them on various cameras.
For today’s Film Friday, I selected Kodak Sports Disposable, which expired in September 2019.
A couple years ago, I purchased two Kodak Sports Disposable cameras from Analogue Wonderland, that were both near to expiry at the time. Discounted at £6 each, which was half of the original price of £12.99.
The Sports Disposable can be used underwater, down to 15 metres deep (50 feet), due to it being waterproof and shock resistant – good for divers and swimmers alike, who have a photographic eye. Plus the camera’s handy for outdoor use or bumps along the way, such as rocky trails or adventures. It is highly recommended to shoot during daylight hours or with good light conditions.
Like most disposable cameras, Kodak Sports cameras have a high speed of 800 ISO and 27 exposures (some other brand disposables have 39 exposures). I assume this camera is simple to use like most disposables, fuss free all round; just snap away with complete ease.
I would like to shoot the Kodak Sports Disposable at some point, possibly not underwater as I cannot swim, maybe in water based situations such as the beach or when it rains during the summer. I am hoping to put those two expired disposables into great use this year, during the summer or autumn months. Either way, they will not be stored or forgotten about in the drawer for longer than they should.
For today’s Tried and Tested Thursday, I will be talking about shooting two rolls of expired Fuji Acros on the Canon EOS 500n and Holga.
Two different format films, 35mm and 120 on the same day; at the same time, at the same location. The camera juggling struggle was real, but certainly worth it. Both rolls expired in October 2019, so I decided to use them exactly a year later.
I went to Southend last October for the day, it was half term – for readers who aren’t from the UK, it is a school break/holiday, typically short for a week or two. Based on a suggestion and inspired from my previous trip there before, I decided to shoot in Southend in the later months in black and white, during the autumn/winter months. I wanted to compare and contrast what it was like during high and low seasons, and whether there would be more people visiting later on in the year. Due to the pandemic and lockdowns, it was slightly different with many places closing for months, such as amusement parks, attractions, entertainment, shops and restaurants. I was quite lucky to have visited Southend before the third (and final) lockdown that would happen a few weeks later.
Despite shooting two same brand films in two different formats, the results had varied after processing and scanning. I will discuss each cameras’ outcome separately in this post and compare them.
Canon EOS 500n
I used the 50mm 1.8 lens with an orange filter on my day trip shooting. It had been the second time I had used the expired Acros roll with both the same lens and colour filter; the first time was for an upcoming photographic series, which I hope to unveil from next month.
The majority of photos I had taken on the film were on the beach, from walking along east and towards Shoeburyness (only five miles away) to heading back to the Westcliff area before heading home.
That particular day was cloudy with a low tide, which made the beach almost look like quicksand. This was the first time I had seen a low tide in my life!! I did attempt to walk across and it was a bad idea, as my trainers were getting muddy.
Like the previous visit to Southend the summer before, the seaside was near empty and deserted. It wasn’t as busy as I had thought it would be, since it was an advantage for me to do my photography in peace.
I worked my way along the beach, mainly capturing my surroundings of the high tide and small boats that were stuck in the tide. I also focused on the clouds too, capturing the formation and detail in the sky.
I kept the photography simple, focusing on landscapes as well as the finer detail whenever shooting with the prime lens.
The results after processing and scanning came out good. They do have further potential to produce darkroom prints, especially of those shot on the empty areas of the beach.
I do consider Acros being ‘grayscale’ since the black tones aren’t that deep. Nevertheless the grain is great, smooth and fine – all thanks to the 100 ISO. Just like the Lomo Color Negative film I used there a year before, it was also at 100 speed.
Like what I did with the Canon camera, I used my Holga mostly on the beach capturing the day’s low tide.
In true fashion, the Holga was taped to prevent possible light leaks however that wasn’t slightly the case after processing, more on that later.
Anyway, having had many trials and errors with the Holga over the years since its purchase, I was confident to pick it up again for the occasion. I was snapping away until I saw the bottom switch of the camera set at ‘B’, meaning ‘bulb’ which is to attach flash guns. I had done this the last time with the results coming out shaky and blurry, but in this case I flicked over to ‘N’, the ‘neutral’ mode.
The Holga is a basic medium format camera with very limited functions and settings. It happens to be a cult favourite and has a following in the photography community.
Whenever my film gets processed I often feel anticipated for the results, even more excited to see the negatives before scanning them…
Well, the Acros 120 negatives came out quite interesting: the first couple of frames were OK, but down the line it appeared to be some sort of problem or malfunction. I initially thought there could have been a few factors, from loading the film or possible exposure to light.
Most likely it could be from the paperbacking from the 120 roll, where the numbers seemed to be imprinted on some frames of the negatives. It didn’t really impact the post-production side of things, such as scanning but I didn’t want to discard the film. Sometimes I would keep ‘errors’ for keepsake purposes, like in this instance.
This was the second time shooting Acros on the Holga. The first time, the results came out blurry, so I was determined the second time round would be an improvement and probably would have been a bit better.
Now that I got my point ‘Acros’ slightly, I am satisfied with the results from both cameras. I do lean towards the Canon SLR being the strongest contender, although the Holga isn’t the loser in this round. The 120 film did have potential sans malfunction plus no tape, the outcome would have told an alternative story with a happier ending.