DP Blog
6x6 2006-12-28

Finally developed my first roll of 6x6 medium format film. When I was dropping off the films to have them developed, the print shop attendant eloquently summarized my photographic oddities: "Everyone is abandonning film and going digital, you are going medium format. Why would you do that?" Cause I assumed the challenge would be fun. I suppose it is still to early to judge whether the challenge IS fun. But so far what is certain is I'm not having fun paying close to two sterling pounds for each shot I snap (cost of film + development + scan + transport to pro lab and back). What's more, the images are coming out like crap, as you see above. Lack of detail, severe pixelation in the low lights, film/scanner dust, etc.

However, on the brighter side, the Bronic SQ is an absolute joy to shoot with. The thunderous sound of the mirror-slap, the tank-like quality of the body, the waist-level viewfinder, the detailed thoughts that go into every image, all-in-all the camera creates a pro out of any amatuer. Surprisingly, in spite of the fact that the Bronica has no metering what-so-ever, I was still able to produce some well-balanced exposures. So as you see I've gotten myself into a predicament. On one hand I thoroughly enjoy shooting with the camera, but on the other I can't stand the extortionate cost and reduced quality in the images. I suppose an amicable compromise would be to invest in a quality scanner...

PS: Tonight I installed the Captcha anti-spam addon, so if you have any problems posting comments, please let me know! (salar @ dynamicperceptions . com)

Comments (3)

  • I'm struggling with this a bit myself. I have lowered the cost of my film habit by starting to develop my B&W film myself, but I can't seem to get a sharp scan with my inexpensive Canon scanner's film attachment. I still like the feel that real B&W film evokes. What to do...
    Doug @ Dec-28-2006
  • To cut costs, I develop my own film, and I search ebay for expired films.. I have been shooting 1992 Tmax, I have almost 20 rolls of the stuff, and I love it! Cheap as hell!
    Ron @ Dec-28-2006
  • Thanks Doug, Ron.

    Doug, for a while now I've been contemplating the purchase of an Epson 4490; From the reviews I've read, it is supposed to be an excellent scanner for the price. If you're considering a scanner upgrade, maybe consider the epson?

    Ron, the Ilford HP5 Plus monochromes I'm using are also expired film, but not as old as 1992! I bought a 20 pack dated April 2006 for just over £1 each. But from what I've read as long as the film is refrigerated in constant tempertures then it's really a non-issue.

    Hmmm... maybe I should also consider a mini darkroom...
    Salar @ Dec-28-2006

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