What kind of B&W film do you like best... Film?

Discussion in 'Wedding and Event' started by scottanderson, May 7, 2007.

  1. I am wanting to have some fun and do a little playing around at an upcoming
    wedding. I do need some relatively fast film. 1600? dont want extreme grain of
    3200. I have been shooting digital for a lot of weddings here lately but have a
    big one with an assistant coming up soon and am hoping I will be able to break
    out the old film cameras and play a bit with the extra help. I want to get some
    fun gritty shots at the reception. I haven't used anything since college quite
    a few years back and was hoping to get some of your favourites. I remember
    liking Ilford Delta for street documentary a long time ago and of course tri-x
    but I dont even know if its out there anymore. Do you guys remember that stuff?
    What are your favorites? Do you guys still shoot it or do you miss it?
  2. Medium format is good if you don't like grain. Delta 3200 is good pulled to 1600, in HC110 for example, but I really like HP5 that you can push very well @ iso 1000 (I'm talking about MF). If you shoot 35 mm, you should considr Fuji 1600, it's the best BW film for the fine grain IMO, also consider a developer like microphen.
  3. I agree with Neopan 1600. It is almost grain-free with fine grain developer. But Fuji does not make it in 120 format, that's a real pity!
  4. I love Delta 3200 and TMZ both. Joe Buissink still shoots a good portion of his weddings with
    TMZ. If it's good enough for him.....
  5. Do you guys remember that stuff?
    Urm. Yes - I use it almost daily. It's not exactly ancient technology, you know. Well, at least it's not in Europe. :)
    Tri-X pushed to 1600 will have more grain than you probably want. If you're using 35mm then I'd suggest P3200TMZ rated at 1600-2400, and developed in TMAX. This will give fine tonal control without expanding the highlights, and very acceptable grain. If you're using 120 then Delta 3200 is pretty much your best best, but rate it around 1600 to minimise grain.
  6. I push slower films and use high speed film all over the place. I've had a couple of specific requests to shoot some B&W, specifically grainy and "atmospheric" weddings due to the images I put in my "early" portfolio.

    The choice of film depends on situation and desired look. The developer is almost secondary at that point - you lock yourself into a fairly small set of choices once you pick to push TXT to 1600 vs Delta 3200 @ 1600, for instance.

    I prefer to shoot 35mm at those speeds - usually, I'm pushing because I want to be able to move quickly, so having to change after "just" 16 shots in 645 and 12 in 6x6 wouldn't cut it for me.

    If the setting is contrasty _or_ you want to have some bite to the image, I would actually push TXT. I might even use stand development. I go up to 6400 without hesitation, but usually stop myself at 1600 and move onto Delta 3200 if I want to go beyond that. I find Neopan 1600 and HP5 to collect contrast too quickly for my own tastes, and just don't feel I have the level of control I'd prefer for such challenging situations.

    If you're dealing with a contrasty situation to begin with, you probably want to go with Delta 3200 or TMZ and either shoot at box speed or pull to 1600. The grain will be more noticeable, but these films will really help you control contrast.

    Lately, I've been doing stand development of TXT in Rodinal. I've shot it up to 6400 and possibly faster (not even metering at that point), with 1+100, 60s of initial followed by 2-3 hours of stand. Shadows are really impressive and sharpness is as expected. So is grain. But that's the feel I'm going for, after all.

  7. I still shoot weddings on film exclusively. Unfortunately finding a decent quality B&W lab in the digital world, is almost impossible. The solution for me has been the chromogenic (C41) B&W films, XP-2 in particular is a good choice. It doesn't mimic silver based B&W films, but it does an acceptable job.
  8. When I shot film.... I did not like the C-41 films (like the kodak) unless they were scanned and printed digitally. If they were printed traditionally, I thougth they were too muddy and brown toned. They didn't have enought contrast. On the other hand, I thought the Neopan 1600 by fuji was too contrasty. (just my opinion). I did like the TMax 3200 shot and processed at 1600.
  9. When I did weddings I had my own well equipped dark room. I did a lot of Black and white for newspapers as well. I never did find a good b&w printer so I did my own developing and printing. It was hard work and I had a difficult time satisfying myself. I never had a customer complaint. I used TMax 400 for most of it. I always used flash fill in weddings for insurance. I did one b&w less expensive wedding in a dark banquet room where I had a hell of a time focusing so I set the aperature on my Bronica on f16 and correspondingly set the Vivitar 283. I used Kodak chromogenic film.
    The C-41 latitude and depth of field saved the evening. The pictures were really quite good. The b&g were delighted.
  10. My choice for chooting at 1600 is

    Fuji neopan 1600/D-76 Developper - some grain a bit contrasty

    t-max 3200 @ 1600/T-max Developper - Some more grain good contrast

    Fuji neopan 400 @ 1600/D-76 Developper - low grain hi contrast

    It depends on what I do, if the scene have low contrast I go for the neopan 400 at 1600 (sharp and detail) or neopan 1600 (dramatic look), but to be shure to do it well in a wedding I'll go for the t-max 3200 @ 1600, I think is the one that accepts more latitude (just an opinion without tests!)

    If I remember well, the neopan 1600 is realy a 800 iso film and the t-max 3200 is in fact a 1000 or 1200 iso.

    The less grain you want the more contrast you will have, there is no magic film in that iso sensibility. However If you can offer the digital pics too then I don't see where is the problem in having some good old dramatic graini pics to complement. If they will be in a book and don't need big prints then even t-max will do the job. I have some 7 x 9 1/2in with t-max 3200 @ 1600 and the grain stil very very fine.

    I do NOT advice C-41 BW films as they look BAD when shooted at low speeds! (1/30 or 1/15 or slower... the speeds we use all the time in weddings) the pictures I toke at those speeds without flash where ugly.

    If you dont process your films then consider just using color film and ask the minilab to get BW copies, It can be a disaster if you give your T-Max 3200 exposed @ 1600 to a lab... trust me.
  11. I liked the t-max 400, back in the 50's & 60's tri-x was the choice. These are 400 or 320 speeds, but good choices,
  12. Hey guys, Thanks for all the responses on this. Sorry it took so long I almost forgot this was on here. I am gonna grab the HP5 and the delta. I will post some after the wedding the end of this month.

    Thanks Again,

  13. Sorry for the late reply, Tri-X 320 in MF for a slightly gritty image, Pan-F 50 for crystal-clear B&W. Some people say that, since there is no real grain in a chromogenic film, that the Kodak 400-speed chromogenic film, forget the name, is the finest-grained film on the market, less grainy than T-Max 100 despite the two stops of extra speed.


  14. Scott, my favorite film is Kodak Verichrome Pan in 120 format. I truly love the sharpness, details, and it exposure holds up quite well in different assignments, Rufus.

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