Friday, May 14, 2010

CNY 2010

At Chinese New Year this year I sought to immortalise my family on film, the good old way it was done in the good old days.

All pictures shot on Kodak Gold 200 with a warming filter, except for pictures of Shannon and Aunty Siew Khim.

Ang pow.


Surprise for Dad.

The family.

The family again.

Girls (and the uncle).

Big boys.

Ice cream.

Conversations in full swing.

After family dinner, day two of CNY.

Lunch with Li-Shia and Tim, 16 Feb.

Shannon and family came over for dinner on the 17th.

We visited Aunty Siew Khim and family on the 21st.

* * *

On another note, Eric has started making colour contact prints. So I sent him this roll to try it out.

He said he sensed in the pictures a certain warmth; I took it as a compliment!

What I'm excited about is that this provides a way to see what was actually shot. Black-and-white contact prints have been around for ages, and at any rate the negatives are easy enough to interpret. Colour slide film is even easier to interpret; what you see is literally what you get.

But colour negatives have always been a problem. Now with Eric's hand-printed colour contact prints, we don't need to have every frame printed at 4R or larger using a semi-digital process at conventional shops, in order to see what we shot.

* * *

Slides are still the ultimate, but their slow ISOs (Velvia is rated at 50, Provia at 100) make them quite impractical for anything other than landscapes or flash-assisted work. Also, with slide films becoming rarer and rarer, they easily cost nearly RM30 per roll, and developing usually starts at RM25 in most places (such as E-Six in Pudu and Photo Media in SS2).

Incidentally, Ken Rockwell, on day one of CNY (14 Feb 2010) shot this:

Jesus is The Way, The Truth and The Life, but digital is dull. Digital, like the Devil, is mostly variations on the same color.

Film, like Jesus, is The Way, The Light, The Power and The Glory Forever. (Matthew 6:13, loosely.)

On Film, I get the warm colors of sunset's last light, and I get vivid blues, right on the film and on my scans.

And he's right; only film retains both deep oranges AND deep blues.

Picture of Soo Tian, Pangkor, shot on Velvia 50.

(The bookshelf was actually slanted!)

* * *

But perhaps it is not quite fair to compare digital SLRs and colour slide film, because that's not what most people shoot.

Now I shall pit colour print film against a compact digital camera.

Digital, original.

Too dull, but that's not a problem; we can boost the warmth in-computer.

Digital, warmer.

Somewhat better.


What may not be immediately apparent is the colour of the wall. It has a slightly greenish cast in the film picture, and this is because fluorescent light appears greenish on film.

This, of course, is not desirable as a source of direct light, but when relegated it makes the background appear cooler, thus causing the warmer, window-lit subjects to stand out better.

When you look at the digital pictures, there is little difference in the colour temperature (i.e. warmth) of the light bouncing off the wall and coming in through the window.

Print film (which is what most of us grew up with) is readily available at supermarkets, 7-Elevens, sundry shops and the neighbourhood photo shops. They cost between RM7 and RM14, and developing is a mere RM5 at most places.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

soo tian, some guy might come and grab your ass from behind, seeing your long hair.haha