Written by Nasir Hamid on March 23rd, 2015
Some photography from the final day of Torpids 2015 in Oxford. This year I only managed to make it to the final day but the weather was fantastic and there was a great turn out of spectators who came to enjoy some racing on the river. I used the sunny weather as a perfect opportunity to test out some special motion picture film I bought recently. This batch of film is surplus stock left over from the new Star Wars (Episode VII) movie that I purchased. It’s daylight balanced and has a film speed of ISO 50 so the sunny weather was perfect. I’m impressed with the lack of contrast in what was at times extremely contrasty light and the control of highlights is very nice too. With spring in the air and blossom starting to make an appearance I hope to be able to use more of this film through the spring and into summer.
[Tech info:] Minolta Hi-Matic 7, Kodak Vision 3 50D motion picture film, ISO 50, developed with a Rollei Digibase C41 kit. Pakon scans.
Written by Nasir Hamid on March 17th, 2015
This set of images were made with what I think is the oldest camera I currently own – a Voigtlander Bessa I 6×9 folder from 1936. It works incredibly well for its age but it is a little quirky (it has separate viewfinder windows for focussing and composing) and it’s not particularly fast to use in a hurry but I do enjoy the size of the frames on the film and it folds down to a very compact size which makes it perfect for carrying around. I’ve only put three rolls through it so far and I think I’ll try a roll with this camera mounted on a tripod to see how much sharper the images become.
[Tech info]: Voigtlander Bessa I 6×9 folder, 105mm Skopar lens, Fuji Acros 100 film, developed in Kodak HC110 1+31 for 5:30.
Written by Nasir Hamid on February 28th, 2015
Here are some images from a recent lunchtime photography session with Ella. I wanted to practice a little with this camera and lens combination because while I really like the results I get from them, I’m not happy with the shutter release on the camera and how far you need to press before it will activate the shutter. I have a power-winder for it that came as part of the kit but I haven’t tried it yet. Maybe it’s about time I did. Ella was very easy to work with and hopefully there will be more opportunities to do some photography together.
[Tech info:] Mamiya 645 Pro TL, 80/1.9 lens, Fuji Acros 100 (expired) film, processed in Kodak HC110 1+31 for 5:30.
Written by Nasir Hamid on February 25th, 2015
Some of the results from my large format lunchtime session with Alice using a 1940’s press camera. For this session I wanted to test out some Fomapan 100 film that I’ve had laying around for over a year and recently discovered. So far so good. I like these results. I’m hoping to do more large format photography in my lunch break because I really enjoy composing my shots on a large ground glass screen – often times upside down – and also having a limited amount of shots as well as the slower pace compared to other kinds of photography.
[Tech info:] Graflex Super D 5×4, Pentac 8inch f2.9 (bottom left), Kodak Ektar 190/5.6 lens, Fomapan 100 (expired), processed in Kodak HC110 1+31.
Film hanging up to dry
Written by Nasir Hamid on February 19th, 2015
Here are two Fujiroids that I made at the end of my lunch break photography session with Xinlan yesterday. The sunlight was bouncing off the side of a white building which is one of my favourite kinds of light to photograph portraits in. Prior to these I finished a roll of Fuji Acros 100 in my Mamiya RZ67 and some of those shots will follow soon.
[Tech info:] Polaroid Land Camera 180, Fuji FP-100C instant pack film (expired).
Written by Nasir Hamid on February 17th, 2015
These two shots were made during my lunch break today on Fuji FP-100C instant pack film (just like Polaroid) and are as they came out of the camera. The shot on the right was accidentally over-exposed but I decided to post it here as a comparison because I quite like it. To me it looks like expired Polaroid. Usually I under-expose Fuji pack film because I like to bleach the neg which gives 2 extra stops of detail in the shadows but as there wasn’t much detail in the shadows on this shot I decided not to under-expose. I also used some b&w film on this shoot and those shots will follow at a later time after I’ve developed them.
[Tech info:] Graflex Super D 5×4 camera, Pentac f2.9 lens (from WWII), Fuji FP-100C (expired) instant pack film
Written by Nasir Hamid on February 9th, 2015
Yesterday I taught a landscape photography workshop at New College with Anthony (the current Oxford University Photographic Society President) and after a classroom session we all went out into the New College grounds to do some photography. The sky was very clear which made for quite contrasty light with nice shadows. I decided to take my Polaroid 110B to do some large format photography on Kodak Plus-X Aerographic film to test out how it handled contrast. Overall I think the film handled the contrast very well, especially in this first image below. I only took six sheets of film with me and to save time I bracketed the first two shots and then used my last two on Anthony (we couldn’t decide on jacket on or off so we shot both).
[Tech info:] Polaroid 110B, Kodak Plus-X Aerographic film, processed in Kodak HC110 (1+31) for 5 mins.
Behind-the-scenes – film drying in the darkroom
Written by Nasir Hamid on February 8th, 2015
It was nice to see some familiar faces at this years’ Town vs Gown Boxing competition at the Oxford Union, especially some of the team from last year who had come to cheer on Oxford. Last year was my first time photographing this event and I had no idea what to expect when I arrived there. This year was very different because this time I had access all areas and I also had last years’ pictures to live up to (which can be seen here and here).
After much deliberation on which cameras and film to take with me I eventually decided that I wanted to make some portraits on medium format but the difficult part was choosing which medium format camera to take. In the end I went for my Mamiya 645 Pro TL because it’s the one that I own with the fastest lens and not only did I want a shallow depth of field but I also knew that the light levels inside the Oxford Union are fairly low. The 80/1.9 lens that I took with me is quite unforgiving when it comes to focussing it at anywhere near to wide open and the focussing screen that came in my camera (I’m not sure if it’s the standard stock screen) is very bright and clear which actually makes it more difficult to tell whether something is in focus or not so the sharpness in some of the shots below is lacking. The Mamiya 645 Pro TL is a nice camera to use but the thing I hate most about it is the shutter release travel feels like it goes on forever which can cause movement of the camera (in my experience) just before the shutter fires. I have a motor-drive for mine which came with the camera but I haven’t used it yet because once you’ve loaded the grip with AA batteries it adds quite a bit of weight to it as well as increasing the overall size.
[Tech info:] Mamiya 645 Pro TL, 80/1.9, Kodak Tri-X 400 @ ISO 1600, processed in Kodak HC110 (1+31) for 16mins.
Written by Nasir Hamid on February 7th, 2015
Last weekend I photographed lots of beautiful vintage kimono’s for ITO to use in their online store. Each kimono is a one of a kind and it was hard to believe from the amazing condition that most of them are from the 1920’s. For the final images I used a digital camera but as is usually my way I took along some film as well. The shoot went really smoothly but we had a lot of kimono’s to photograph so there wasn’t much time to do a lot of film photography but I did manage to make these two shots with a Polaroid camera. The shot on the left was made with just the window light, the shot on the right was a mix of window light and a Nikon speedlight through a white umbrella which I balanced to look natural. Many thanks to Catriona for organising everything and for keeping the shoot running smoothly.
[Tech info:] Polaroid 190 Land Camera, Fuji FP-100C instant pack film (bleached neg).
Written by Nasir Hamid on February 6th, 2015
This is the first set of my images from the Oxford University Amateur Boxing Club (OUABC) Town vs Gown 2015 competition which was held at the Oxford Union two nights ago. Last year was my first time photographing this event and it’s hard to believe that twelve months have already gone by. I was very pleased with my images last year but I decided to change things up a bit this year in terms of cameras and film choice instead of just repeating the same thing. First up we have some shots made with my Leica M2 but I also took a medium format camera with me and a 35mm point and shoot so those will follow soon. The film I used for the images below (Fuji Neopan 1600) is sadly no longer made by Fuji and the roll I used came in a mixed bag of film I bought from a press photographer a couple of years ago. The film is expired but I have no idea by how much so it was a bit risky using it but that’s also what makes things exciting when you have no idea how or if the shots are going to turn out. When it came to developing this film I had to seek some advice from a friend of mine who’s more experienced than I when it comes to using this film (thanks Jean Pierre) and I’m pleased to say I really like the results. All of these were made using available light, in fact I didn’t take a flash with me and the only camera I had that did have a flash was the point and shoot compact.
Many thanks to Isra Hale for the invite and to the boxers for their patience both before and after their bouts in the ring. I look forward to next year when not only will we have another Town vs Gown but also the Oxford vs Cambridge Varsity will be back in Oxford.
[Tech info:] Leica M2, Voigtlander 35/1.2, Fuji Neopan 1600 (rated ISO 1600), developed in Kodak HC110 (1+31) for 8mins. Pakon scans.
Written by Nasir Hamid on January 29th, 2015
Whenever I want to test out any tungsten balanced film I tend to either head for the Ashmolean Museum or to Clements & Church – the tailor’s on Little Clarendon Street and sometimes I will visit both places during the same lunch break as I did last week when I wanted to test out some Kodak Vision 3 500T motion picture film. This is the exact same film that is used by movie studios in Hollywood and around the world. I really like the colours you get with this film and although it takes longer to develop than regular colour film (because you have to remove the black remjet coating from the non-emulsion side of the film), with extra time and care it can be done with just hot water and a sponge which is what I used on this roll.
[Tech info:] Leica M2, Voigtlander 50/1.5 Nokton, Kodak Vision 3 500T, Rollei Digibase C41 kit, Pakon scan.
Written by Nasir Hamid on January 28th, 2015
Here are some medium format shots I made during my recent lunch time session with Tori. I previously posted a couple of Fujiroid bleached neg shots here. The format for these shots was 6×9 which is one of my favourite medium format aspect ratios but I only have one camera that was designed to use that format and these shots reminded me that I don’t use it enough. You get 8 shots of 6×9 on a 120 size roll so it’s not a format for the trigger happy. For this shoot I decided to use fresh film stock for a change and while I can’t see a huge difference compared to some of my expired film shots I do think that the contrast was handled better on the contrasty back lit shots. We were a bit rushed in this session because I wanted to use medium format, 35mm and Fuji pack film all within 25mins which is not easy when you’ve got lots of people moving around during lunch time and you have to keep stopping to wait for a clear background but Tori was very patient despite the cold weather and we got everything done in time.
[Tech info:] Mamiya Universal, 100/2.8, Kodak Tri-X 400, processed in Kodak Xtol 1+1.