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Experimenting with a 35mm – Take One!

A few weeks ago I borrowed my Dad’s dusty, “old” Minolta X-700.  I picked up a pack of FujiFilm 200 from my local Shop Rite (it was the only pack and I wanted film right away).

I’ve seen some beautiful work done with film, so with some trial and error and doing more personal work, I’d like to produce some great stuff using film.  I would definitely like to try out a medium format camera soon, but for now, I think I will experiment with what I have.

I debated about editing the photos below, but decided that I wouldn’t do much to them. I did a few corrections in Light Room – mostly just playing with the Auto White Balance and Auto Tone settings, but for the most part, I tried to keep them as close to what came out of the camera as possible – simply for the purpose of knowing what they look like right off the camera.  I had to go to my local Walgreens to develop (and even now they send it out), so the quality obviously isn’t as great as it could be if I had send it to a “professional” photo lab.

I shot most of these on Aperture Priority (whereas, I usually like to shoot manual, I needed a little help this time) with a Minolta 28-70 f3.5-4.8 lens.  The shots below are from walking around Cape May, NJ on Labor Day.  The day started out very sunny and ended up pretty overcast, but still a gorgeous day.

A few lessons/observations:

First, the frame-counter on this camera doesn’t work, so not only can I not see what I have just shot (I missed having an LCD screen the first few shots), but I don’t know how many exposures I have left.  Winding the film – yeah it didn’t quite work very well for me the first time around.  I must have not loaded one roll of film correctly, so it didn’t catch well – yeah – I walked around for a while shooting pictures, but not really because the film was not advancing!  I finally decided to open it up because I knew that I had clicked way more than 24 times with that one roll.

The film advance lever stopped working towards the end of the day, so I couldn’t advance my film – luckily I think I was already toward (if not already at) the end of the film. Exposure – don’t forget your Sunny 16 rule and use the built-in light meter (it’s something I am just really starting to get!).

Up next, I have a few rolls of Kodak 400 Black & White Tri-X film I got from eBay and some Fujifilm 400 I had found at a Rite Aid.  Hopefully, I can test them out soon.

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4 responses

  1. These came out awesome!!

    September 24, 2011 at 4:59 pm

    • Thanks! Even though I wish the colors popped more, maybe it would have helped if I overexposed but overall I really love the look & feel. I have to take another day to go out and shoot with it…soon.

      September 24, 2011 at 7:42 pm

  2. hi!!

    My name is Tiana, and I am photographer based in Philadelphia PA.
    I wanted to know if you would second shoot for me next year? I don’t see an email address on your blog, could you contact me?
    tga@ubaraphoto.com?

    October 19, 2011 at 1:23 pm

    • Hi Tiana. I’m so sorry for the late response, I was away on vacation and am just getting around to responding to some emails. My email is mercado.m@gmail.com. At first I wasn’t sure if this was actually sent by you, but if you’d like to email me, please feel free. Nice work on your blog, btw. Thanks for stopping by.

      November 2, 2011 at 10:30 am

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