Deciding whether to keep shooting 35mm film

Should I continue shooting 35mm film? I ask myself this question regularly, but never make a decision. Last week I thought I had decided I was going to shoot only medium and large format film, leaving the every day stuff to digital. And I certainly wasn’t going to shoot 35mm color film, since why would I do that if I can’t use it to make darkroom prints?

Then yesterday I went to a pool party and brought the Canon EOS-1v loaded with Portra 400. The 1v is a rugged, fast, weatherproof, professional-level camera. I forget how nice it is to use. I shot a roll of random snapshots, self-processed the roll in the JOBO, and scanned it using the Pakon. It’s really all quite easy when it works.

Thing is, I like the results. I don’t shoot color film often, but now I’m wondering if I should.

I get lazy, so shooting digital entices me. Then I spend some time with film and am immediately reminded that I prefer it.

I just ordered a dozen rolls of Portra 400 in 35mm so I guess that answers the question for now.

 

Making Larger Darkroom Prints

I made a handfull of 11″ x 14″ darkroom prints last night. Bigger prints are cool, but I never know what to do with them.

Mostly, I print at 5×7. The smaller paper is relatively inexpensive so I don’t freak out every time I waste a sheet (and I waste a lot of sheets). Smaller prints are easy to handle, display, and store.

Still, big prints are fun. I’ve got about 100 sheets sitting in the freezer so I might as well use them up.

Egg on my face with the Mamiya 6

Self Portrait (2013). Mamiya 6, HP5+, D-76

A few years back I owned a Mamiya 6 medium format rangefinder. Eventually I drifted toward using the Hasselblads for medium format and sold the Mamiya. I’ve been missing it.

Carrying a Hasselblad around “just in case” doesn’t make a lot of sense. I love them, but they’re definitely not convenient. If I want convenience and medium format, the Mamiya 6 is about the best there is.

I’m thinking about trying one again. After all, with a self timer I can make silly things like the above photo :).

I spend a lot of time thinking about cameras, formats, sharpness, color fringing, distortion, megapixels, and so on yet none of that matters when it’s a photo of my mom.

2018 07 05 mom