Tag Archives: photography

52 Cameras: Yashica Dental Eye III


Things I forgot in the video:
Flash guide number at ISO 100 = 7.5m
Motorized film load, advance, & rewind.
Mid-roll rewind.



Looks like we'll have pears this year. No idea what that circle is.

Looks like we’ll have pears this year. No idea what that circle is.


Flower at the co-op.

Flower at the co-op.


This was just chilling on the living room wall.

This was just chilling on the living room wall.


Dusty feather.

Dusty feather.


The cats' wheat grass.

The cats’ wheat grass.

52 Cameras: Meopta Milona Revisited – a Sort-Of How-To

Depth of Field calculators:
https://www.cambridgeincolour.com/tutorials/dof-calculator.htm
https://dofmaster.com/dofjs.html

Make a table for your camera:
http://dofmaster.com/doftable.html

Make your own Exposure-Mat exposure calculator:
https://expomat.tripod.com/



The previous entry about the Milona is here.

Wow! I finally found a manual for this thing. It’s in Czech but still very useful.

Here's a JPEG of the PDF page with a depth of field table (in meters).

Here’s a JPEG of the PDF page with a depth of field table (in meters).


At small apertures, the lens nails it from near to far.

At small apertures, the lens nails it from near to far.


Beautiful backlit leaves.

Beautiful backlit leaves.


Dramatic sky.

Dramatic sky.

52 Cameras: Fujifilm X-E3




Lonely yucca.

Lonely yucca.


Climbing buddies on the summit of Cooke's Peak, NM. I brought up the shadows on this image.

Climbing buddies on the summit of Cooke’s Peak, NM. I brought up the shadows on this image.


Moonset over Cooke's Peak.

Moonset over Cooke’s Peak.


Blossoms in the yard. It's been so windy we may or may not get fruit.

Blossoms in the yard. It’s been so windy we may or may not get fruit.


Jem snoozing like a little bear.

Jem snoozing like a little bear.


Auger at the somewhat controversial remodel of the old Halpin building in Santa Fe. Acros film simulation.

Auger at the somewhat controversial remodel of the old Halpin building in Santa Fe. Acros film simulation.

You work with the tools you have.

I developed a couple of rolls of found film. The image below is from a Canon EOS Rebel II I reviewed recently. I’ve only used the chemicals for 2 rolls, the Kodak B&W split between the Kalimar KX5000 and the Rebel II and the Phound Photos roll from the Nikon EM so I don’t think the developer has gone bad. I’ll have to develop another roll before I know for sure. My thermometer and temperature controller agreed and I stop-watched the same as usual so I don’t think it was user error. The reason for this preamble is that both rolls are super thin – holding them up to a bright light, you can barely tell there are images at all. Both rolls were in thrift shop cameras and of unknown vintage but the similarities have me second guessing myself.

On to the point of this post. Canon’s Scangear software can be a little wobbly so I frequently do multiple scans with different options selected. It’s especially important when, like this roll, scans are at the ragged edge of being able to get anything. I just upgraded Vuescan and read an article about using its RAW capabilities so i tried that too for kicks. All versions were scanned at 2400DPI with color negative as the input type. That corrects for the orange base of color negative film so “no corrections” isn’t completely true. The file numbers don’t match because of a known-for-years-but-never-fixed bug in Canon’s software.

The film is Walmart-branded Fujicolor Super HQ 200.

Scangear scan with no corrections (scan 1).

Scangear scan with no corrections (scan 1).


The no corrections base scan (scan 1) with Photoshop Elements' (PSE) Auto Smart Fix (ASF) applied. Much better contrast & sharpness but the colors are still pretty orange and sharpening definitely boosted the grain.

The no corrections base scan (scan 1) with Photoshop Elements’ (PSE) Auto Smart Fix (ASF) applied. Much better contrast & sharpness but the colors are still pretty orange and sharpening definitely boosted the grain.


Scan 1 with GIMP's auto input levels applied. GIMP is much more manual and doesn't have a let-us-fix-it-for-you tool like PSE's ASF. The colors are MUCH better but removing the orange "fog" reveals more grain too. Maybe PSE didn't sharpen that much.

Scan 1 with GIMP’s auto input levels applied. GIMP is much more manual and doesn’t have a let-us-fix-it-for-you tool like PSE’s ASF. The colors are MUCH better but removing the orange “fog” reveals more grain too. Maybe PSE didn’t sharpen that much.


I messed with a lot of settings – back light, fading, grain, and manual histogram adjustments – before settling on Fading Correction set to low.

The same image with Scangear's Fading Correction set to low (scan 2). Definitely starting from a better place.

The same image with Scangear’s Fading Correction set to low (scan 2). Definitely starting from a better place.


Scan 2 and PSE's ASF applied. Slightly better than before but still pretty orange.

Scan 2 and PSE’s ASF applied. Slightly better than before but still pretty orange.


Scan 2 + GIMP auto input levels.

Scan 2 + GIMP auto input levels.


Vuescan, or my ability to use Vuescan, did not cover itself in glory. The RAW file wouldn’t open in any software I have. Adobe Camera RAW, PSE, GIMP, & Preview all showed a giant black rectangle. For the could-actually-see-something scan, I didn’t maintain the same settings. I still used 2400DPI but scanned as TIFF and 48-bit color instead of JPEG 24-bit like I used with Scangear. I need to go back and do apples-to-apples. PSE would not open a 48-bit (16 bits per channel) TIFF. Preview and GIMP opened it fine so, thanks Adobe, for deliberately crippling the less expensive, not a subscription, version of your software.

Vuescan scan to 48-bit color TIFF and converted to 24-bit JPEG with Preview (scan 3). Better color but lots of scanner artifacts. I'll re-calibrate before I re-scan since I installed the new version.

Vuescan scan to 48-bit color TIFF and converted to 24-bit JPEG with Preview (scan 3). Better color but lots of scanner artifacts. I’ll re-calibrate before I re-scan since I installed the new version.


Scan 3 + PSE ASF. Lost contrast but removed some magenta.

Scan 3 + PSE ASF. Lost contrast but removed some magenta.


Scan 3 + GIMP auto input levels. Better contrast but a bit yellow.

Scan 3 + GIMP auto input levels. Better contrast but a bit yellow.

Off the scanner, the colors are better with Vuescan. To me, the best of these images using only quick auto-corrections is Scan 1 + Gimp. GIMP didn’t do as well with the darker, higher contrast version (scan 2). That may change with some added labor. GIMP does a lot of things better than PSE but not everything and it’s definitely more of a manual tool. That also may change after re-calibrating the scanner with Vuescan. The automation with Vuescan is not great. I use it a lot for prints, Polaroids, and large format (one-off images) but it expects even spacing to do a section of a roll and that just doesn’t happen with the vintage/broken/not its native format kind of images I throw at the scanner.

What I really need to do is take the time to work out a new workflow using the full-frame DSLR and macro. I couldn’t get past how much slower I was trying to touch-type than I was as a fast hunt-and-pecker so i never learned to type. I need to suck it up and push past going slower and learn to do this right.

52 Cameras: Canon EOS Rebel II

A good description of the timeline and various names.
Film Photography Podcast asks: “Best Value 35mm SLR Film Camera?!”



This is from 1/2 roll of Kodak BW400CN, expired 01/2006. I overrode the DX speed and set it to ISO 320 to compensate for the age.The other 1/2 was in the Kalimar KX5000.
Bad framing but kind of fun. I added rotational blur to the wheel. The flash froze everything.

Bad framing but kind of fun. I added rotational blur to the wheel. The flash froze everything.


Jem wondering why I'm playing with the camera and not giving him snacks.

Jem wondering why I’m playing with the camera and not giving him snacks.


Rustic angel. Part of a descanso near Arroyo Seco.

Rustic angel. Part of a descanso near Arroyo Seco.


Still life with cat lamp.

Still life with cat lamp.

Phound Photos Volume 19

This roll was in a Nikon EM from a local thrift store. It’s Kodak Gold 200 color print film. I might have ruined some images – I dropped the developing canister after the film was loaded. It didn’t crack so I figured I was good to go. The top of one of the reels had come off so a few inches of the film stuck together and no developer could get in there. Still, I got 21 images with something from a 36 exposure roll. Of those, maybe 12 are decent with a little cropping and color correction. All needed spot, dust, and cat hair cleanup. Developed in Cinestill C-41.

The construction images are interesting. They have a lot of motion blur and came out looking almost like watercolors. I just cropped and cleaned up - no effects.

The construction images are interesting. They have a lot of motion blur and came out looking almost like watercolors.
I just cropped and cleaned up – no effects.


The rest are from a Ju Jitsu dojo – maybe in Albuquerque.
The guy on the bottom is not enjoying life.

The guy on the bottom is not enjoying life.


Belt award?

Belt award?


Picture with the sensei. Go Lobos!

Picture with the sensei. Go Lobos!

Worldwide Pinhole Photography Day – 25 April 2021

This post is going to dive into some fairly technical stuff so if you just want to scroll and look at the pictures I totally understand.



Here is my entry for WPPD: http://pinholeday.org/gallery/2021/index.php?id=500

This is a slightly higher resolution version.

Santa Rosa de Lima Church Ruins near Abiquiu, NM. Built ca. 1744.

Santa Rosa de Lima Church Ruins near Abiquiu, NM. Built ca. 1744.


I used Harman Direct Positive paper (DPP). I used the FB, not RC paper. The image is left-right reversed. Images are captured by film (or sensors) with the top of the subject at the bottom of the film/sensor and the left hitting the right side & vice-versa. I decided on the scanner which way is up but that doesn’t correct mirror-imaging. This isn’t an issue with negatives but since this is Direct Positive paper, both axes aren’t corrected.


WTF is direct positive? With negative film, light makes the silver halides in the film change state and the developer converts light-struck blobs into metallic silver, which looks black. That’s why it’s negative – the more light, as in brighter parts of the picture, the more black (silver) you get on the negative. This paper develops in an opposite manner. On a negative, an overexposed image is more black. On DPP, an overexposed image is more white. I don’t pretend to know what voodoo they do to make this happen but that’s how it works in use.


About the paper (I used 8×10″):

First, holy carp, this stuff is curly. It has a curl out of the package along the 8″ axis. I used double sided tape to load it into the camera but it was barely enough. After it’s developed, it curls every which way. The above image was taped down to dry after developing and it curled enough to peel the tape off of the backing surface. Flattening it is complex enough to warrant its own post so I’ll just say I re-humidified the paper, pressed it flat, and then scanned before it could re-curl.

Most of what I could find online from people who’ve used it suggested a starting point of ISO 3. The problem is that the paper is orthochromatic, not panchromatic. In english, it doesn’t respond much to the red end of the spectrum.



My ISO test sheet.

My ISO test sheet.

My ISO test:

I loaded paper with a 2-layer black construction paper dark slide.
I was going to meter for ISO 1, 2, 4, & 8 and move the dark slide so each strip got the metered exposure. The f-stop remained constant at 254. The meter app has 256 – close enough. I figured I could interpolate if neighboring strips were too light & too dark.

I almost made a big mistake. I mostly use the “Luxi” app on my phone. The app works by entering 2 of the 3 exposure variables, ISO, f-stop, or shutter. It then gives you the 3rd variable. I metered for ISO 1 and got 32 seconds. I metered for ISO 2 and also got 32 seconds. I didn’t know the app tops out at 32 seconds. If the value for ISO 1 had been more than 32 seconds but ISO 2 was less, I would have been off by however much ISO 1 was really over.

I unlocked the f-stop so it would be the calculated variable and scrolled the shutter value and sure enough, it wouldn’t go past 32 seconds.

I had deleted the “Light Meter” app because I hated the UI changes. I re-downloaded it because I had used it in the past for pinhole metering. Nope. It also now tops out at 32 seconds. Why? At least turn the speed red or something to let the user know it’s out of range.

D’oh! Now I have to meter for ISO 6 (takes 1/2 as much light to respond the same as ISO 3) and then double the shutter time.

I did make a mistake. After the 2nd strip, I forgot to move the slide so I had to do corrections as I went.

I ended up with:

ISO 8 @ 26 seconds.
ISO 4 @ 52 seconds.
ISO ~2.5 @ 130 seconds.
ISO ~1.5 @ 156 seconds.

Harman gives ISO 1-3 with lots of caveats about testing for yourself so I was in the ballpark and didn’t have to bail and start over. I decided to use ISO 3 as my baseline. It’s just a baseline because Harman DPP barely responds to the red end of the spectrum at all so it really depends on the color of the light and most meters respond fairly evenly to the entire visible spectrum.



First try:

First attempt - great exposure, bad framing.

First attempt – great exposure, bad framing.

Drove to the church and got some nice images on my phone & a digital I’ll review soon.

I used calculations from the Mr. Pinhole Pinhole Camera Design Calculator.
I’m not bashing the site at all – it’s been incredibly helpful to me over the years but…

The angle of view (AoV), which is mathematically correct, is based on the coverage of the longest axis of the film, the diagonal. A lens doesn’t care that we want rectangles or squares, it outputs a cone of light which resolves at the focal plane (film or sensor) as a circle (a conic section). So, the angle of view of the lens is the top of the triangle from the pinhole to the focal plane. The problem is that the actual film dimensions determine where the angle is cut off. The angle of view of my camera was more than enough to cover the diagonal of an 8X10″ piece of paper (12.8″). For my camera, the diagonal AoV is 65.3 degrees.
I framed the image based on 65.3 degrees. I also bumped the camera as I took off the tape/shutter but I thought I had enough field of view to cover it. Along the 8″ side of the film, I really only had an AoV of 43.6 degrees (53.2 on the 10″ side). Metering was good in the early afternoon sun with lots of blue from the reflected sky (36 seconds at ISO 3 & f/254).



I got home and processed the image. It’s something but I had a couple of hours before sunset so I decided to try again. I re-loaded the camera (lots of double-sided tape to mount the paper and more black tape to make it light-tight and more blue tape for structural integrity and to hold the black tape in place (black console tape is expensive and blue painters tape is cheap).

By the time I got back to the church the light was beautiful. Beatiful for something that can register reds. I metered 80 seconds but added 10 more since the pre-sunset light was much more red. It was enough to get the image but it’s pretty underexposed.



The camera:
Served me well for 2 years and it's foamboard & tape.

Served me well for 2 years and it’s foamboard & tape.


It was my backup since I didn’t finish my more ambitious project in time for WPPD. I used it last year as my backup-backup so I won’t go into details here. It’s a square cone with a focal length of 10 inches and a 1mm pinhole.

52 Cameras: Polaroid Swinger Model 20




Oops – Forgot to add the images. A bit grainy but it is ISO 3200.
Looking west from Ladron Peak. Hazy day & I didn't use any filters..

Looking west from Ladron Peak. Hazy day & I didn’t use any filters..


John & Bob on the summit.

John & Bob on the summit.


I'm not sure if this is a light leak or flare.

I’m not sure if this is a light leak or flare.


Light leak, flare, frame overlap, & I think the film moved in my pack - I didn't put a ratchet on the winder.

Light leak, flare, frame overlap, & I think the film moved in my pack – I didn’t put a ratchet on the winder.

52 Cameras: Fujifilm Instax 210




No more images for now. I only had 7 in the pack and 4 are in the video.

I did cover the exposure sensor and not the flash sensor when I tested the flash. In the video I put my finger over the wrong one. The exposure sensor tells it whether to fire (and what f-stop/shutter combination to use) and the flash sensor tells it when to stop the flash if it fired.

Something I forgot in the video: The guide number (GN) of the flash isn’t given but the manual does give a range, 0.9-3m (~3-10 feet).

The light calculator: https://toolstud.io/photo/light.php

About Light Value (LV) vs. Exposure Value (EV): As I understand it (and I’m mostly self-taught so chime in on the YouTube comments if I’m way off), at ISO 100 LV and EV are the same. Light value is how much light is present in the scene. Exposure value is how much light you’re letting into the camera. At ISO 100, it doesn’t matter which you use because that’s how the units are set up. ISO 800 film is 3 stops (100 to 200 is 1, 200 to 400 is another 1, and 400 to 800 makes 3) faster than 100 so the EV is 3 stops lower than the LV – it takes 3 stops less light to give the same exposure to ISO 800 than it does for ISO 100.