Hi I'm Martin Smith, a amateur photographer that likes to shoot solely film. I use black & white with the odd colour image thrown in and mainly use a Leica M4-2 & M3 with Summicron 35mm and 50mm lenses. I tend to shoot anything I like, objects, scenes, landscape or street life. My film of choice now is Fomapan 100 Classic.
As many of you know I don’t often shot colour C41 or even E6 films, which for the life of me I don’t honestly remember when I last shot slide film. Having taken some colour images in Honfleur, France and watching Youtube videos, like by the German photographer Robin Schimko who sometimes uses colour film for street photography, I’ve coming around to the idea of shooting a little more colour in my photographic life.
Kodak Pro Image 100 film
So I thought next year on our next trip to Normandy I try and use only colour film, just carrying my Leica M3 and Summicron 50mm. There is a possibility I might have a Leica Elmarit 90mm f2.8 lens as well in my camera bag if I can find a good example. I have both the Summicron 35mm lens plus two 50mm Summicron’s and for a long time now have been thinking about getting a Leica 90mm lens. Don’t not think I’ll be buying a Summicron 90mm non APO or APO versions as although it’s extremely good lens, it is enormous! The Elmarit 90mm f2.8 is far smaller with a E39 filter thread as my other Leica lenses and having seen the specifications on the Summicron 90mm lens I think will be like shooting a rangefinder with a house brick attached to the front of the camera. This lens weights in at 17.1 oz or 484 grams compared to the Tele-Elmarit of 7.957 oz./225.6g
Onto the results of using Kodak Pro Image film, in a funny way to me this film look reminds me of the old Kodachrome in these pictures below. All pictures have been shot with no filters, shot with different light conditions and where exposed by using +1 stop with my Weston Euro Master lightmeter.
Click to enlarge images.
I used various C41 films over the years, I think mostly either AGFA Vista 200, Fujifilm Superia 200 or Kodak Color Plus 200 but like many I miss the good old days being able to purchase reasonably priced 100 ASA colour print films. There are of course a few options on the market, Kodak Professional Ektar 100 is a great film but the colours look a little rich for my taste, Kodak Portra 160 Film for a pack of five is twice the price of the Pro Image film pack. Another option would be to use a slide film like Kodak Professional Ektachrome E100 but the price at £15 or $19 a roll with the processing cost on top seems somewhat high and to me looks as it would be better used for high end portraits or landscape images as would any of the dwindling offerings from Fuji’s Fujichrome stable.
Recently I purchase a five pack of Kodak’s Pro Image 100 film and am pretty pleased with the results of this first test roll. I don’t do reviews but this film I found to give a very good render of all the colours I observed when shooting this film. The only issue I found was during scanning with my Nikon Coolscan V scanner was I did find the images appear with a blue cast and never noticed this with either Agfa Vista or Kodak’s Color Plus films. This was corrected easily with Gimp 2.8 and the only other step I had to undertake was a little straightening on some of the pictures.
All images taken on my Leica M3 with the Summicron 50mm f/2 on Kodak Pro Image 100 film in October of this year.
Another very warm day in Honfleur. While the children were been boarded onto the vintage carousel, I was watching the parents reactions though my Leica. I love the way this man is watching and waiting for proceedings to start, arm over his head, wearing the ubiquitous face mask under his chin.
Leica M4-2, Summicron 35mm f/2 ASPH and taken on Kodak Tri-X, rated at 800.
Taken back in April during the lockdown I walk past this small parking restriction sign most days walking my dog. I wanted to catch the light just right so it would highlight the pot marks which look like the sign has been peppered with buck shot.
Leica M4-2, Summicron 35mm f/2 ASPH and taken on Fomapan 100 Classic film at an ISO of 800
I haven’t done much work of late, what with dealing with my late fathers estate, that and the restrictions of the Covid 19 outbreak, I have found very difficult to find the time or inspiration. Rest assured images will be coming soon as the wife and I will staying in Normandie, France very soon.
Shot this image last month early morning in Queenborough quay, Kent, England. The morning tide waters where very slowly coming in and normally I wouldn’t of taken the picture until seeing the light shining on the wet mud.
Leica M4.2, Summicron-M 35mm f/2 ASPH with a B&W yellow filter on Fomapan 100 film pushed two stops.
Came across this gentlemen having a rest enjoying the day after lockdown restrictions had been eased. Nothing to special, but it made for a pleasing image and shot at Barton Point Coastal park, England.
Taken on my Leica M3, Summicron 50mm f/2 and shot on Fomapan 100 @ 400 ISO using sunny sixteen.
Sheerness, England, parking around what use to known as Marine Town is hard to find many spare spaces during lock down. This only means one thing, no one is at work and it’s like a Sunday but everyday.
During lockdown I notice there seems to be an awful lot of discarded belongs around where I live. Most of what I see being left out are children’s toys and part of this I think is due to the shutdown the recycling, refuse sites and charity shops are all closed at the moment, yet from what we have seen don’t look like they are going to open anytime soon. Just walking a mile or so from home with the dog brings some surprising finds nearly every morning.
Unsightly to some, great street photography for me. I find it amazing sometimes what some residents will discard onto the street and this not a big city but a sleepy seaside town.
Looks like war zone but this is just one back alley in the town, many alleyways are now like this or even worse still.
Walking back along the seawall brings another discarded find, a child’s scooter. If I post every picture of all the finds I make this blog would go on for ever and a day.
Further along the wall yet more cars parked everywhere, still on the brightside does keep some people employed I suppose and photographers something to shoot during the lockdown period.
Leica M4-2, Summicron 35mm f/2 ASPH and Leica M3, Summicron 50mm f/2 all images taken on Fomapan 100 Classic film at an ISO of 800
Bright sunny morning and I came across this bench with the empty bottle and can from the night before. There is something to be said for empty streets during this lockdown for photographers, it’s either easy to find shots like the one below or harder because you work to a image that is going to work for you.
Leica M4-2, Summicron 35mm f/2 ASPH and taken on Fomapan 100 Classic film pushed to an ISO of 800
I don’t often do still life photography and this picture has come from an album I found while sorting out my late fathers estate. In the 1950’s he was stationed with Royal Air force in Malta and during that time there he purchased a Voigtländer Vito B camera. It’s a wonderful album full of images he had taken with this camera of the island during the two years he was stationed there.
I used my late father’s Leica M3 with a Summicron 50mm f/2 duel range lens. Shot on the dinning room table using just natural light from a near by window and taken with a timed exposure of f/8 at 1 second on Fomapan 100 Classic film.
This is Linda, she is a fellow dog owner and while out walking our dogs by the seawall I asked if I could take her portrait with her mask, which typifies the way our day to day lives have become during this pandemic.
Leica M3, Summicron 50mm f/2 taken Ilford Delta 400 film using Sunny 16.