Since I published my book “Photography: The F Manual” I received many questions about what equipment to use. I decided to make a series of video about cameras, lenses and other tools I used and still use for film and digital photography. First review, my first camera: Pentax ME Super. Enjoy the video! . .
In the last days I’m exploring an analogue past and thinking about the digital present. A lot of water passed under the bridge since my last blog post. My father passed away, my sabbatical I took to take care of him is going to end soon and at the moment I’m putting some order in my home getting ready to sell it and move on with my life. I come from a family were we used to keep everything and for sure a lot of pictures. Opening boxes and drawers I found the photographic archive of the family, the oldest one consisted in a lot of prints, starting from the beginning of 1900, the newest one, mostly created by me consists in CSs, DVDs and hard disks. Guess what? The oldest archive is accessible without any tools but my eyes and a source of light, the newest one requires a ton of tools and it is still accessible thanks only to the redundancy I applied when I created it, using different media to store my images, but the CDs and DVDs are almost all unreadable now. Vint Cref, one of the Internet fathers and Google VP, warned us about […]
Digital or Film? Fuji Acros Digital on a XPro-2 compared to Fuji Acros 100 Film on Hasselblad 6×6… who will be the winner? Few weeks ago I did a non scientific comparison between black and white digital and film, using my beloved Fuji XPro-2 and a Pentax 67 with Ilford FP4. The article got a lot of interest and was also published on Fuji X Passion magazine. I decided to improve the test and use Fujifilm Neopan Acros 100 film, instead of Ilford FP4 and Hasselblad instead of Pentax. The use of actual Acros film instead of Ilford is obvious and needed for a less casual comparison. Hasselblad instead of Pentax is because I suspected some lack of sharpness was caused by the lenses, and since I have used Hasselblad all my life and I’m sure were the best analogue medium format camera and optics, I simply wanted to eliminate every variable related to the lens. As I said before: I know that, scanning the negative, part of the process is still digital so is not perfect I do not intend to give all the answers I did this just for fun and to understand myself a little better […]
Is Black and white better with digital or film? I compared the Fuji Acros film simulation on my XPro-2 with an Ilford FP4 film on my Pentax 67. Lately I had the time to scan old negatives and I was pretty impressed by the quality and quantity of information available on film, so I decided to use film again, particularly for the PhoenixPhotoProject. The quality of the images created was pretty impressive so I decided to try some film in medium format. I used to work with Hasselblad but I decided to get a used Pentax 67 and have some fun with it. Next time a Pentax vs Hasselblad comaparision! I took some pictures on the snow in a sunny day. The dynamic range a the quality of the tones were great and I started to have the feeling that film can be better than digital sometime. I decided to do a simple non scientific comparison and take the same pictures with the XPro-2, in RAW and jpg with the Acros simulation, and with the Pentax 67 with a roll of Ilford FP4. The choice of a medium format film, compared to an APS-C digital is very simple, 24 MegaPixel […]
I was reading on Swissinfo.ch, the article The breathtaking photos that showed Switzerland to the world by Marguerite Meyer (Writer), Ester Unterfinger (Photo editor) I was impressed by this picture: The picture in itself is just a good documentary photograph but what I noticed is the dynamic range (or latitude of exposure as we called it before we were trendy…). We can easily see details in the dark areas inside the gallery and we can see the details in the panorama toward the arches. Some burning was made in the darkroom and the effect is visible, but all the details were in the original plate. This was for sure a large format plate made before the industrialization by Kodak, so there was no need to save on the quantity of silver in the emulsion. You can see the same latitude of exposure in almost all the old professional pictures well exposed and developed. If you are in Italy there are some good places to watch the impressive quality and dynamic range of old films the Alinari Archive is one of the best and has a lot of publications. The rule in film was to expose for the shadows […]
Or… How to have some photographic fun without technology. Digital photography created a wonderful new world of opportunities but it also changed the way we photograph, instilling in us a lot of bad habits. One of the worse effect of digital photography is to make us shot too much and post process even more. It’s kind of strange, but also with a strong film background, when we use digital we forget to have a slow approach to our subjects. Sometime to remember what make me take great pictures I have to immerse myself for a day in some sort of cathartic experience that will force me to the basics of photography and forget the digital world and the infinite possibilities to post process my images. Those cathartic experiences are not intended to take great pictures, but simply to clear my mind and have some fun far from a computer. The most basic way to photograph is with a pinhole camera. I suggest to every beginner to try the pinhole to understand deeply the basic concepts of photography, I even created a full chapter about it in my book “Photography: The f Manual”. The simple idea is to […]