Film Photography


It’s been quiet around here, but I’ve been busy.

Last weekend I processed a roll of HP5+ that I’ve been carrying around with me since March in an Olympus Trip 35. The camera was a gift from my pbase friend DM, who’d found it on ebay and cleaned it up nicely. I’ve been slowly shooting the roll ever since the camera arrived and finally finished it off here a couple weeks ago. Last saturday evening I spent some time scanning the negs but I was unhappy with the results (I don’t like the software’s automatic crop feature) I was getting with the Epson software that came with the scanner. So I downloaded a trial version of Vuescan ,which then gave me WAY too many options, but I liked the control it offered. Ah, there’s always two sides to a coin, no? So I purchased said software and proceeded to re-scan these same negatives multiple times during the past week, working late into the evening. Each time I was unhappy with the results but each time I learned something about the process. I let all that ferment in my head for a couple days and last night I scanned the negs yet another time.

A couple things I learned. First, I was rather excited about Vuescan’s ability to output a raw file straight from the CCD on the scanner. Very cool! I could put this right into Lightroom and tweak it there. But I was unhappy with the fact that the Mac OS wouldn’t give me a preview of the file in the finder. If you wanted to see what a photo was you had to open it… And, as my usual work flow on film scans is to open it in Photoshop and do a cleanup/despot, the raw didn’t really afford me much as I then would end up with a psd or tiff file, thus doubling my file storage for each picture. So after all this, and teaching myself the Vuescan software and interface well enough to get a passable scan, I opted to go with a tiff file, like I was doing before Vuescan, and then stay with my original workflow: scan, tiff, Photoshop for cleanup, then import to Lightroom for any levels adjustment.

At least, that’s where I am this weekend…