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, 50mm plus I now have a 90mm f/2.8 Tele-Elmarit-M lens. I tend to shoot anything I like, objects, scenes, landscape or street life. My film of choice now is Fomapan 100 Classic.
“I’m coming around to the idea of shooting a little more colour in my photographic life”
Think my memory is getting a little short as I get older!
I shot colour negative film two years ago and this image below is from France.
I’d forgotten that I had taken this picture in the village of Saint-Céneri-le-Gérei, because it wasn’t a very interesting image to me at the time as a street photography image. Now with the all new 2021 lock down regulations in England, I’m unable to go anywhere other than an hours exercise or for work… shopping, that’s the wife’s department! So photography has gone out the window for the foreseeable and so I have been looking though previous negatives to see anything I’ve missed or discounted before. I found these colour negatives from our trip to Normandy in 2018.
This is the near the middle of Saint-Céneri-le-Gérei, Normandie France and it is said to be one of the most beautiful villages in France, small, not over commercialised with a couple small cafés this village well worth a visit. Located in the south of the Parc naturel régional et Géoparc Normandie-Maine and lies on the River Sarthe 13 km from Alençon.
Leica M4-2, Summicron 50mm f/2 using my Weston Euro Master V meter and taken on Fujifilm Superia 400 film.
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’m 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.
I took this shot of Honfleur harbour purely for my own use as a desktop wallpaper for the computer, then decided to share with all of you because my wife and I love Honfleur, but not only that to show the harbour town houses which as you see are very tall.
In some case seven stories high townhouses, many of these buildings are very old dating anything from the 16th to 18th century and is a tourist hot spot in the summer. The streets and harbour front are lined with café and restaurants with other street hiding hidden gems like Saint-Catherine’s Church which dated from the 15th century.
If you are find yourself visiting Normandy, Honfleur is a must for a photographers for harbour views, scenes and street photography.
There’s even a very large ferris wheel which my Mrs just had to have a ride on and no you wouldn’t get me on it …I cannot stand heights!
All images taken with my Leica M3, Summicron 50mm f/2 and Summicron 35mm f/2 lenses on Agfa Vista 200 colour film.
As they use to say in Monty Python “And Now for Something Completely Different”
This window is in the garage of the house in Saint Germain de Montgommery, France that we stay at for ours holidays. Before I’d seen this shot but because of a large shrub the sunlight didn’t come though so it was always in shadow. However, we have a new gardener and he has taken this bush down so allowing sunlight to come though this window now. The frosted glass of the window just adds to the spooky effect.
Leica M4-2, Summicron 50mm f/2 and taken on Kodak Tri-X, rated at 800.
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
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.