The annoying thing about film is that it can take quite a lot of time before you get the results. The fun thing about film is that weeks after you spend a holiday you get to re-live it when you receive the developed film at home!
As you might have read in earlier posts (here), my man and I visited Curaçao in February. Last week I received the developed results from the last film I shot there, so I now have the complete set of analogue photos ready to share. It was my first trip with a film camera (two actually), and the first time that I really went for shooting film. At home I was shooting one or two shots every now and then, but in Curaçao I tried to have a more relaxed approach towards film. The result is 5 rolls of Portra 400 and 1 roll of Tri-X! I shot 3.5 roll of Portra 400 and 1 roll of Tri-X with the Leica M2, and 1.5 roll of Portra with the Minolta Riva Panorama.
I also wrote a post about the color photos in Curaçao for 35mmc, which you can read here if you are interested:
One of things I discussed in this post is the presence of white spots in all photos, although most visible in the photos with a dark sky (see below). A couple of people helped me figuring out what caused it. My conclusion is that it must be dust on the negatives that were present during scanning. Other suggestions were:
- Storage issues (suggested by the AG photo lab who developed and scanned the film). I rule this out as I had one roll developed by another lab, in those photos the white spots are not present, but the rolls experienced the same storage and traveling.
- X-ray initiated spots (during security checks at the airport): I rule this out for the same reason as above. And if x-ray causes a problem it is more likely to be a haze rather than spots.
- Holes in the shutter curtain of the M2. This cannot be the case as the photos from the Minolta Riva Panorama also display spots. And probably holes in the curtain will produce more vague light areas rather than spots with sharp edges.
- Emulsion issues. This is not likely as I see spots in both the Portra 400 photos as in the black and white Tri-X photos.
This leaves the logical conclusion that it must have been dust. I didn’t experience this before with this lab, but I guess no process is perfect, and the guy at the lab can have a bad day too?
Apart from the white spots I am quite happy with the result. I like the colors Portra 400 produces. With the M2 I always metered for iso 100, so most photos were overexposed by 2 stops. The panoramic photos from the Minolta were automatically exposed at box speed. I don’t see a lot of difference in the scanned results, although the negatives from the M2 look more dense. Anyway, here are my favourite Portra photos, you can click on them for a full version:
I accidentally loaded a roll of Tri-X in the M2 (loaded a new roll on the beach, the heat must have gotten to my head, making it impossible for me to distinguish between the both yellow labeled rolls of Tri-X and Portra). But I do like the result. As Tri-X is also an iso 400 film, exposure was fine.
So far I am enjoying my film adventure, so expect more of this to come. Of course with Dutch colors rather than Caribbean ones, but they might be alright too 😉
Thanks for reading!