What do you do when you see the world in colour?
Old 08-08-2019   #1
Huss
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What do you do when you see the world in colour?

The realization has hit me that I am a colour film photographer. I see the world in colour. I love colour. I seek it out. Almost all my work has been in colour, so much so that it took me forever to finish my last roll of B&W film because the entire time I wished I had colour in that camera. And when I got the results back, I again wished I took them with colour film.
Now my colour film stash is dwindling, but my freezer is full of 35mm and mainly 120 B&W emulsions. What to do with them? Sell them off? Trade them for colour film?
I'm not even fussy with colour, I love Fuji C200! I love Kodak ProImage 100! Superia 400? Definitely! Portra? Ok but not a big deal to me. I prefer multiple rolls of the cheap excellent stuff than one of the expensive excellent stuff!
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Old 08-08-2019   #2
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Ha, I'm pretty much the same way. I almost always will choose color film over B&W film. I love the look of B&W, I just almost never want to shoot it.
I probably have 100 rolls of B &W film in my freezer.
My advice, don't fight it and just shoot color, but keep the B&W film.
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Old 08-08-2019   #3
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Can't help you. I guess I'm just the opposite. I recently photographed our local summer street fair with Portra 160. The place was just bursting with color, so color film seemed to be a must. But once processed, i ended up converting most shots to B&W in PS because they looked better.

That being said, I recently photographed a model underwater wearing a brightly colored, flowered dress. I saw the scene in color, and it worked very well. It wouldn't have worked in B&W.

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Old 08-08-2019   #4
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I tend to see in B&W. Shapes, tones. textures etc. That's why I own an MM.

But I just started a new project that is color. We'll see were it leads me. It has started as a bit of a struggle but is getting better the more I work through it.
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Old 08-08-2019   #5
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I don't think that you see mainly colour determines that you must make colour photographs. You could also consciously take a step away from that and might arrive at more thoughtful use of the gray scale than people to whom that comes more naturally.
But if you don't want to use it, it's a simple economic consideration... the film is aging and may better be used by someone else, sooner. I'm sure you'll get rid of it on this forum.
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Old 08-08-2019   #6
dourbalistar
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Huss View Post
The realization has hit me that I am a colour film photographer. I see the world in colour. I love colour. I seek it out. Almost all my work has been in colour, so much so that it took me forever to finish my last roll of B&W film because the entire time I wished I had colour in that camera. And when I got the results back, I again wished I took them with colour film.
Now my colour film stash is dwindling, but my freezer is full of 35mm and mainly 120 B&W emulsions. What to do with them? Sell them off? Trade them for colour film?
I'm not even fussy with colour, I love Fuji C200! I love Kodak ProImage 100! Superia 400? Definitely! Portra? Ok but not a big deal to me. I prefer multiple rolls of the cheap excellent stuff than one of the expensive excellent stuff!
I'm nearly the opposite. I prefer B&W for its look, but also partly because I can do the end to end processing (from bulk rolls to digitizing) "in-house". I haven't gotten around to doing my own color processing and digitizing yet, and I hate sending off color film to outside labs.

Depending on what you have, we could do a trade if you're interested. I have 500ft of Superia 400 in my freezer that I'll probably never get through.
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Old 08-08-2019   #7
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A great advice: "just shoot color, but keep the B&W film"!
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Old 08-08-2019   #8
joe bosak
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Play to your strengths and tastes. Some of your recent posts especially [probably with the lca 120] made me realise how much I love colour too .
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Old 08-08-2019   #9
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"To photograph in B&W is like drawing, you pay attention to the lines, shapes, contrast.
To photograph in color is like painting, you make volumes with colors, you mix them
"

This is a concept expressed by Alejandro Cegarra, Oskar Barnak Newcomer Award Winner 2014 in an interview. As an absolute beginner in the painting and drawing I fully agree to this.

If interested you can find the video with the interview here, anyway interesting.

Personally I'm now more in a B&W mood but this is just now! Maybe one day...

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Old 08-08-2019   #10
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What was the motivation in filling your freezer up with black and white film in the first place? I'm curious about that because from what I've seen of your work you are far more of a natural colour photographer!
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Old 08-08-2019   #11
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I admire black and white work but don't even try. I just don't see that way either

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Old 08-08-2019   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Keith View Post
What was the motivation in filling your freezer up with black and white film in the first place? I'm curious about that because from what I've seen of your work you are far more of a natural colour photographer!
I got a really good deal on it from a friend that owns a studio and switched to digital.
I also got a lot of colour film from him too, which is what I am using most of the time!
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Old 08-08-2019   #13
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Originally Posted by airfrogusmc View Post
I tend to see in B&W. Shapes, tones. textures etc. That's why I own an MM.

But I just started a new project that is color. We'll see were it leads me. It has started as a bit of a struggle but is getting better the more I work through it.
Yeah your B&W work rocks, it just is so good. I much prefer it to your colour work.
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Old 08-08-2019   #14
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One thing that has really made me appreciate colour more is using negativelabpro.com
I scan my own film, and this product finally allows me to realize what I envisaged.

I just love controlling the exposure to effect the saturation of colour.
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Old 08-08-2019   #15
Larry Cloetta
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B&W is for photographing people. Color is for photographing clothes.
That may be somewhat oversimplified, but only just.
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Old 08-09-2019   #16
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Originally Posted by airfrogusmc View Post
I tend to see in B&W. Shapes, tones. textures etc. That's why I own an MM.
In my case, that’s why I reach for digitals whose EVFs permit monochrome display, to start the tonal conversion as soon as I start to compose. A variation of previsualization that also eases the later stage of computer development (which may entail further choices/challenges/compromises, of course, in converting RAW color via luminance tweaks in the color channels).

It’s also why I tend to use a buddy system when shooting 35mm BW film—having a digital EVF handy to make tonal sense of the as-yet-unconverted world of color in the film VF. Leica T as BW seeing eye for M3 loaded with TMax, for instance.

If I lived in Huss World, which seems like a delightful prospect even before we account for the SoCal/Santa Monica hues and luminances surrounding him, it might be different. It would be a happy vacation, at least, eating and drinking Ektar and Portra, Superia and Inferia, before I came home and gradially converted everything to charcoal and ash, soot and whitewash!
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Old 08-09-2019   #17
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I made the switch (from B&W to color) in the mid sixties. And I never had the courage to go back to B&W.
I am afraid of not been able to compose in B&W anymore, and that, if I ever try, I would loose my skill of catching nice images in color
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Old 08-09-2019   #18
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Sometimes the story I’m telling with a photo, color gets distracting, in the way. Bright colors can detract from other features in a photo. Roy G. BIV, with green almost being a neutral color that doesn’t shout out, “hey look at me!” I would always suggest to a client and help with clothing ideas as the main feature I considered, I wanted people to view first when viewing a photograph is/are the face(s).

Just my thought.
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Old 08-09-2019   #19
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I think you probably need to buy one of these Huss

https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/buy/D...4/N/4028759376

That way you can view the wold as God/Kodak/mythical deity of your choosing intended it. Remember, in the beginning there was Tri-X
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Old 08-09-2019   #20
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I find myself to be the opposite. if its been a while, I force myself to shoot color just to change things up. when i look at the shots, i sometimes wish i had shot it in B&W.



I feel more natural shooting in B&W. maybe because sometimes I feel that life, human nature and the likes is more shades of grey than color. that being said, I shoot 80% landscapes and B&W seems, in the prints, to just be right. i save color work for family snapshots and vacations. that being said, when I make day trips to lake tahoe or yosemite, I always have 2 cameras, 1 with color and 1 with B&W. I seem to always prefer the B&W shots, except for sunsets/sunrises which of course have to be in color
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Old 08-09-2019   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Huss View Post
The realization has hit me that I am a colour film photographer. I see the world in colour. I love colour. I seek it out. Almost all my work has been in colour, so much so that it took me forever to finish my last roll of B&W film because the entire time I wished I had colour in that camera. And when I got the results back, I again wished I took them with colour film.
Now my colour film stash is dwindling, but my freezer is full of 35mm and mainly 120 B&W emulsions. What to do with them? Sell them off? Trade them for colour film?
I'm not even fussy with colour, I love Fuji C200! I love Kodak ProImage 100! Superia 400? Definitely! Portra? Ok but not a big deal to me. I prefer multiple rolls of the cheap excellent stuff than one of the expensive excellent stuff!
I absolutely get what you’re saying. Sometimes I think it’s because I grew up in the era when everything that was new and exciting was in color; movies, TV, newspapers, books, etc. that were coming out in color were considered way “better” than the old black and white ones. Maybe I’m just brainwashed.

It’s not that I haven’t tried to like black and white. After all, the first photos I took were on 620 black and white film in my father’s old brownie. A friend gave me the contents of his uncle’s darkroom, this was pretty much all top of the line equipment circa 1990 or so, that was left to him in his uncle’s will. I spent several weeks setting it up but have only used it about a half dozen times in the last 7 or 8 years. I try to shoot, develop and print in B & W and while the photos come out fine, they just do nothing for me.

I have been considering trying to develop C41 over the past couple days. My only options now for color developing are either 15 miles away or by mail.

Fortunately I only have a few rolls of B & W in my fridg. I’d sell or trade the ones you have left. If you’re anything like me, they’ll just sit there.
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Old 08-09-2019   #22
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Huss, come to Finland in the second part of November - for several months you won’t see any colour, it’s just plain gray, gray, gray - sky, land, buildings... Ok Santa wears some colour stuff, but that’s about it. A lot of opportunities to shoot B&W
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Old 08-09-2019   #23
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Huss, agreed, I think we're on the same page... or at least in the same book! Early-on I always shot color as well as B&W but back in the 60's color in the home darkroom was 'impossible' and I enjoyed the creativity in the B&W darkroom.
When I got an M8 I intended to make use of its enhanced IR sensitivity for B&W results. But I got curious to see the color DNGs and soon I made the sea-change realization that I am a color photographer.
I still have some B&W film in the 'fridge, and will pack a few rolls as a little bonus along with a camera sent to a buyer.
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Old 08-09-2019   #24
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They are two separate disciplines, two different esthetic worlds which overlap only at the edges.
Natively, obviously, everyone sees in color, but as photographers we can “see” in both if we choose to. You don’t need any training to visualize a photo in color, but B&W is harder, because it isn’t the way we see, as organisms. Nobody does. That’s why setting the LCD to B&W is such a useful training aid.
If you just shoot one or the other exclusively, or almost exclusively, you miss out on half of what photography has to offer. Seems to me, anyway.
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Old 08-09-2019   #25
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B&W is for photographing people. Color is for photographing clothes.
That may be somewhat oversimplified, but only just.
You should tell Annie Leibovitz that.

And I guess Kodak for their Portra line of films.
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Old 08-09-2019   #26
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If I lived in Huss World, which seems like a delightful prospect even before we account for the SoCal/Santa Monica hues and luminances surrounding him, it might be different. It would be a happy vacation, at least, eating and drinking Ektar and Portra, Superia and Inferia, before I came home and gradially converted everything to charcoal and ash, soot and whitewash!
Lol

But even on a grey rainy day at the beach I seek out colour



(This was either Fuji 200 or 400, I forget)
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Old 08-09-2019   #27
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I think you probably need to buy one of these Huss

https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/buy/D...4/N/4028759376

That way you can view the wold as God/Kodak/mythical deity of your choosing intended it. Remember, in the beginning there was Tri-X
Hey, I just hold up my hands and form the thumb/forefinger on each one to make that pano film format! It's a lot cheaper.
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Old 08-09-2019   #28
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Huss ^^^^Love the above shot. ^^^^
Ernst Haas always prefered overcast for color.
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Old 08-09-2019   #29
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You should tell Annie Leibovitz that.

And I guess Kodak for their Portra line of films.
Huss,

Think about it some more, you’ll get it. Maybe Annie Leibovitz would even get it, though I doubt it.

The quotation wasn’t original with me. What it refers to....well, never mind, just think about it in broader terms, while smiling, instead of taking it absolutely, and categorically, literally. Color can sometimes be a distraction, and esthetic mistake, when dealing with forms. Like faces. That’s part of it, that’s all I’m saying.
Not every subject is best rendered with color, nor is every subject best rendered with B&W. Let’s put it that way, even though the original way I phrased it was more interesting, if looser, more open to misinterpretation, and more in need of thoughtful pondering.

People should do what they like doing, though, when all is said and done.
Keep up the good work.
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Old 08-09-2019   #30
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Huss,

Think about it some more, you’ll get it. Maybe Annie Leibovitz would even get it, though I doubt it.

The quotation wasn’t original with me. What it refers to....well, never mind, just think about it in broader terms, while smiling, instead of taking it absolutely, and categorically, literally. Color can sometimes be a distraction, and esthetic mistake, when dealing with forms. Like faces. That’s part of it, that’s all I’m saying.
Not every subject is best rendered with color, nor is every subject best rendered with B&W. Let’s put it that way, even though the original way I phrased it was more interesting, if looser, more open to misinterpretation, and more in need of thoughtful pondering.

People should do what they like doing, though, when all is said and done.
Keep up the good work.
Indeed Larry, indeed.

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Old 08-09-2019   #31
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“The privilege of a lifetime is to be who you are.” Joseph Campbell

Colour photography is wonderful. I think it is harder. It is also different. But it needn’t be. Fred Herzog’s output is interesting. Apparently the ease of shooting Kodachrome and mailing it off was what led to his early colour.

Sometimes I feel the difference of what I’m doing depending on whether I have black and white or colour in the camera. I pursued for a time a project which I called colour black and white: something with serious intent, compositional rigour and a muted colour range and intensity that had a monochrome aesthetic without the Stewie Griffin nag that I was being pretentious with my cast iron lawn chair and it’s shadow.

All this is why I love my M9. I can have it all.
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Do you see in color?
Old 08-09-2019   #32
Tim Murphy
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Do you see in color?

Dear Huss,

If so, then color it is.

Many people think their absolute should be your absolute.

I can respect and admire all the time and effort it takes to accurately portray all 18 shades of grey in one picture.

But it's still just grey to his kid.

Regards,

Tim Murphy :-)
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Old 08-09-2019   #33
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..
Many people think their absolute should be your absolute.

..
Dear Tim

Unfortunately I am guilty of that too! Often I need to step back and re-assess.

Kind regards
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