Film Photo Challenge

Discussion in 'Open Discussion' started by stillshunter, Jan 6, 2017.

  1. stillshunter

    stillshunter New to FF

    9
    Jan 6, 2017
    Mark
    Presumptuous of me I know, as the new guy, but be keen to involve others in some of @MoonMind@MoonMind and my recent thoughts on a film challenge.

    Many, many moons ago on Serious Compacts I kicked off the "Single In" challenges. A photo-a-day challenge restricting the shooter to one camera/lens combination for a month with results posted to site ASAP for comment by others. Great thing about this challenge is the personal discipline it builds as you focus on imagery daily and really get to know a camera/lens - rather than constantly flipping because you are bored before you really get to know it. Also a great thing about the challenge is it builds the community - as the stress and rigours of making and posting an image a day really brings participants together. So the spirit of this we'd like to foster here.

    ...however......

    The constraints of the "Single In" project don't translate well to film. I mean you could do a photo-a-day on 36 exposures of 135, but then we'd just see a roll of film at month's end with little interaction in between. So ideas, ideas, ideas? Does anyone want to contribute any ideas?
    One idea is a roll a week....easier on 120 granted but doable on 135 too.
    But I'm hoping the brains trust here might have some other pearls of wisdom. Maybe it's not about frequency but a theme?

    Hoping there are a few on here who'd like to participate. I believe @José@José was keen, weren't you mate? :thumbup: I'm happy to go and seek more members from Serious Compacts but I think that would be easier once we have a solid idea our project....that is if it needs more participants.

    So step one is to solidify the idea and then also find out who's keen. :polling:

    Could be fun guys
     
  2. MoonMind

    MoonMind FF Veteran Subscribing Member

    320
    Mar 24, 2015
    Switzerland
    Matt
    I welcome this challenge, whatever form it'll take, because it'd get us to a) shoot and b) share, but as Mark has pointed out, there are obstacles to overcome in order to establish and keep the flow. Daily images are out of the question - but weekly reports could be done, though with a certain lag (basically, I'd say about 9 days before the first images appear, a couple of days after the first week. But how about this: We could start the challenge when we're ready? We could agree on a sort of lead time.

    I myself see other, additional options: Either back it up with instant (something which, obviously, not everyone could do) or with digital - particularily, with situation/scene shots taken on phones ... The former could be lots of fun, but would lack quality to a certain extend, the latter would mean watering down the film challenge idea and make everything considerably more complicated ...

    I think lead time would help us avoid distractions. Each of us can figure out how much time he/she needs before we start. A drop of/collect procedure once a week should be doable for those who don't develop their images themselves; the others will spend some time in the lab anyway, so will welcome the additional time as well (at least for the first roll).

    As to pace: Lead time allows for every possible arrangement - we could even shoot a month in advance and just publish daily if we so choose, but I'd keep it tighter to give the whole challenge a certain urgence. A roll of 135mm a month is easy - a roll a week would mean I would have to shoot a lot more (or work with one camera exclusively - that should be part of the challenge anyway).

    What do you think?

    M.
     
  3. RichardB

    RichardB Super Moderator

    65
    Mar 23, 2015
    Maryland, US
    I wish I still had a local minilab. It's hard to keep a pace when I have to mail film out, and there's temptation to hold rolls for a batch to save on shipping.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  4. stillshunter

    stillshunter New to FF

    9
    Jan 6, 2017
    Mark
    I hear you loud and clear. Labs local to me have all closed, and the two places left send films on to be developed elsewhere. So mail-order for me too only...hence why I most often defer to B&W that I can dev at home
     
  5. MoonMind

    MoonMind FF Veteran Subscribing Member

    320
    Mar 24, 2015
    Switzerland
    Matt
    That's what I usually do. For the sake of the challenge, I'd mail one out per week, though. I have a great lab, but it's not exactly close-by, and they take their time. Would have to use a different service (but there is one that's sufficient).

    M.
     
  6. stillshunter

    stillshunter New to FF

    9
    Jan 6, 2017
    Mark
    Guys, an idea is forming in my mind, so please feel free to burst this bubble before it has time to take up any more space...

    I, for one, always carry a small digital camera with me even when I'm out with my film camera. For example yesterday I had the Ricoh GR with me as I was test shooting my new Bessa-T. I have even used the compact as a meter before - esp. for my old Leica IIIf...is handy as you get a good baseline to tweak for tricky exposures - e.g., compensate exposures, etc. So I wonder whether we could meld the two for this challenge.

    Initial thoughts, take digital photos at a similar time as you expose a frame of film and then compare the two. So for example for a month long challenge, we share at least one favourite candidate digital shot per week and then at the end of the month - when we are sure our films are developed, share the same four (or more) frames (or the favourite frame of that image) as it appeared on film - however it turned out. So we can keep the banter up discussing the digital images taken, what we are expecting to be different about the film frame, exposure issues, motivational challenges, etc., then the finale becomes the film reveal. This might not only account for the latency with film imagery but also fuel the sense of anticipation we all feel to expose that shot on the roll, as well as have us discuss the qualities for and against film.

    Not sure how well I explained that, or how well I thought it out. But I thought I'd put it out there and see if it had any merit as a kernel of an idea?
     
  7. MoonMind

    MoonMind FF Veteran Subscribing Member

    320
    Mar 24, 2015
    Switzerland
    Matt
    @stillshunter@stillshunter I thought about something quite similar at frist - it makes sense, after all. It'd give us what I called "lead time" - in spades, while, as you stated, we'd have time to talk and discuss. On the other hand, if we need lead time anyway, why not acknoledge that in the first place and integrate it into the challenge - as in: We start showing images in, say, ten days, get out shooting? We could even make that month in advance. Whatever we do during that month (maybe showing some "documentary" digital shots - along the lines you propose), it'd lead up to the challenge - but the way I think of it, I wouldn't make it part of the challenge as such. It would be like a preliminary comment thread - that's fine by me.

    But what I'd like is either a "Show a roll" or a "Show one for each day" component - the way I shoot film, I may fumble shots, but not that many (well, I might fail to expose them correctly, but that's something to be expected). So I for one would expect to be able to show (at least) one shot per day. This'd make it very comparable to the SiJ, too.

    Am I over-ambitious?

    M.
     
  8. stillshunter

    stillshunter New to FF

    9
    Jan 6, 2017
    Mark
    Not over-ambitious at all. I think a plan is beginning to take form.

    I'd like to keep myself focused on SiJ for this month, but could you give us a rough timeline on how your proposal would play out - over February and March?

    This will give me the opportunity to have my kit sorted in time.....I hope.
     
  9. MoonMind

    MoonMind FF Veteran Subscribing Member

    320
    Mar 24, 2015
    Switzerland
    Matt
    Yep, February/March sounds fine. I'm leaning more and more towards the ZM - I want to explore that camera as an everyday (film) shooter.

    M.
     
  10. José

    José FF Regular Subscribing Member

    179
    Mar 25, 2015
    Sorry for only replying now :oops:

    Yes, I'm willing to join in on a challenge, but not sure about the best way to set it up.

    I shoot film mainly for family portraits with Portra and wouldn't like to use it for the challenge, so would need to have a 35mm camera dedicated for the challenge with some other type of film. Concerning lead time, we don't need to rush it at all. We can make something like select a theme (for each) and post 5 images per month on that theme throughout a full year. Too ambitious also from my part?
     
  11. MoonMind

    MoonMind FF Veteran Subscribing Member

    320
    Mar 24, 2015
    Switzerland
    Matt
    Not at all - in fact, I think we can do better if we anticipate the start date for posting long enough in advance - like something of a month or so. I think one roll (of 135 film - several for 120) is doable over about a month, and I'd like to see lots of images - pretty much like a "daily" challenge, just after the fact. It's shooting (and showing the results) that counts, not ultimate quality.

    M.
     
  12. stillshunter

    stillshunter New to FF

    9
    Jan 6, 2017
    Mark
    Great to have you on-board mate :thumbup:
    Do you have that second 35mm camera at the ready mate? If not, do you think you'd have one hunted down in time to start shooting in February?

    OK so I'm sure I have this clear in my mind.

    January:

    - we continue focusing on SiJ

    February:
    -
    start taking photos with film gear, any film gear, we can chop and change cameras and formats.
    - set aside an area on Forever Film to chat through the challenges and revelations we're experiencing for the month as we shoot.
    - Options:
    a) set up themes for each week during the month. I really like this idea as long as they're general enough....for example I can't do Winter when you do....being here in Australia ;) Otherwise we could leave this first challenge open and if it is successful we could then launch into a themed monthly challenge following this?
    b) annex any chat about photos, challenges, revelations, etc., with digital images

    March:
    - in a new area we showcase an image (a day?) taken during February.
    NB: this would work well if we shoot 36exp of 35mm film - we'd have a frame a day with at least six 'spares'.

    So @MoonMind@MoonMind , @José@José , and anyone else interested....what are your thoughts?
    Are we getting any closer?
    How can each month be refined?

    Again I'd like to keep it as simple as possible so we can better enable success. If we have success then we're more likely to continue with more challenges. If it leaves a bad taste then we'll abandon the idea all together :(

    Personally, what I like about this challenge, as it's shaping up, is that I normally only ever shoot B&W film and then process here at home. But with this lead-in time I might venture a roll or two of colour that I can have a lab do (to minimise risk of me messing up development) and then talk through my first ever colour film outputs, including how they compare to digital colour.....and how the hell to scan colour images (which I hear can be its own challenge) ;)

    Also like the fact that if we are talking about an image a day, then I'm less inclined to waste film taking 2-3 frames of each scene. Like Eggleston, one shot! Looks, shoot, move on.
     
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2017
    • Agree Agree x 1
  13. José

    José FF Regular Subscribing Member

    179
    Mar 25, 2015
    I believe we are close, but start posting in March the February photos will not work. My current lab options, and I believe this currently applies to almost all, requires at least two weeks turnaround and in reality this equals three weeks. I think the basics are ok and of course a llt of new ideas will arise during the actual challenge itself and we can then fine tune it.

    This will not be a problem :hide: A second, a third,.... Just need to select something compact to have it always handy. A Minolta 7S ii maybe.
     
  14. stillshunter

    stillshunter New to FF

    9
    Jan 6, 2017
    Mark
    Thanks for the reality-check mate :thumbup: I'll wait for @MoonMind@MoonMind to pop back in and we'll fine tune the dates. I'm keen to get something solid - including a timeline - soon in case we wish to spread the word more widely. I dropped the hint over at Serious Compacts today and we have at least three members who were keen to be kept in the loop. So we might get some legs on this thing yet :cool-14:

    Ha Ha Ha I had the 7sII. Not a bad little RF. I wish I'd kept a couple more of my old RFs. Specifically I would have held onto Canon QL17, Olympus SP & RC as well as the Konica Auto S3. Oh that was a great little cam the S3. Still have a few XAs and mju-ii for compact fun.
     
  15. MoonMind

    MoonMind FF Veteran Subscribing Member

    320
    Mar 24, 2015
    Switzerland
    Matt
    I fully agree to procedures as outlined by @stillshunter@stillshunter - as for dates, no worries, we'll start posting when we're ready. I'm with Mark when it comes to a set starting date, but whoever wants to join in later should be allowed to do so; the waiting and anticipation is, after all, very much part of shooting film, so we needn't be unreasonably strict on that point.

    If we can agree on the 32 or 36 exposure thing plus the "one shot, one image" idea (love that one), we should be able to get rolling come March - some of us from the get go, some a little later. That'd mean four times eight 6x9 frames - my game at some point, probably, but also for the Fuji GW690 mentioned on SeriousCompacts just recently - or a roll of 135 or three rolls of 120 6x6, respectively. That way, the challenge would keep us entertained for considerably longer than one month - not a bad thing at all.

    Actually, we don't need to style it as a monthly challenge at all, more of a "post one image a day of a roll/set taken within a month" project. If things run smoothly, there's no reason to stop after a month, really - which would make starting later and joining in more attractive. This'd mean that we could keep it going as long as new posters join in - with monthly (or weekly, depending on numbers) threads to keep things moderatly organised.

    Regarding themes, I really don't need any to get me motivated - as I'm sort of an opportunist when it comes to images, I might not even appreciate a theme. But there's nothing to stop anyone from choosing and following a theme ... If we went with a theme, the "one shot, one image" approach would be somewhat jeopardised, however. I for one explore a theme by experimenting with one subject for quite a while by taking multiple images.

    As for cameras, well ... let's put it like this: If I changed every week, I could keep going till probably May :p I'd keep that optional, though - so we'd have something to come back to, too. I like the groove of a Si(J), but we'll simulate that by posting once a day instead of posting the day's shot - good enough for me, especially since I'll keep shooting anyway after the month's over.

    Maybe we could even restrict ourselves to one single standard rule for participation: Show the whole roll|set|project in true order - don't do lots of processing (if any), just shoot (develop, scan) and show ... But maybe that's going a bit too far ...

    M.
     
  16. José

    José FF Regular Subscribing Member

    179
    Mar 25, 2015
    Well, I don't think I have conditions to go ahead with this.

    Now you are making me buy a new medium format camera. This is your fault. Both of you! I might start with a 35mm camera, but to have good resolution scans I really need to go at least to a 4.5x6 and something with changeable backs would also be helpful. Let's see.

    As far as specifics of the challenge, "post one image a day of a roll/set taken within a month" is fine by me, it fits 135 rolls perfectly. I still need that MF though. :)
     
  17. MoonMind

    MoonMind FF Veteran Subscribing Member

    320
    Mar 24, 2015
    Switzerland
    Matt
    @José@José What can I say? The MF bug bites *everyone* who's serious about film :whistling: Actually, if you don't go for maximum quality and like to experiment, decent old folders can be had for a song (well, mostly). But I'll not go there if you don't want me to ;)

    M.
     
  18. stillshunter

    stillshunter New to FF

    9
    Jan 6, 2017
    Mark
    Beware. If we follow this logic then here we are in a year or so time....
    (ironic if we started from Serious Compacts)
    HeadingupIdahoPeak.
     
    • Funny Funny x 2
  19. stillshunter

    stillshunter New to FF

    9
    Jan 6, 2017
    Mark
    ....don't laugh @MoonMind@MoonMind I know you've thought about it.

    ;)
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  20. José

    José FF Regular Subscribing Member

    179
    Mar 25, 2015
    I think I'll give up on the folders. At least for now. I need something a bit easier both to purchase and maintain/use. Thinking about something in the likes of Bronica ETRSi or Mamyia Super, since interchangeable backs is really a plus for me at this point. Well, even a Pentax 645 additional body to use as back for the lenses I already have, but the hunt for that has not been easy.
     
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