This photograph almost perfectly illustrates my current feelings about shooting film (you know, that floppy plastic tape-like stuff). When I saw these heart-shaped leaves while we were in Africa I visualized what a great image they would make: the lighter new leaves against the background of the older leaves, a gentle arc, and as always, three is a powerful number in a photograph. So I took the picture and I waited to see the result.
And when I did, I'll admit I was a little underwhelmed. For me, part of the problem (maybe the whole problem) is certainly the black and white - in real life these leaves were such a vibrant green, and of course that doesn't translate at all in this image. But what's also missing for me is the detail that was present in the original. All the veins and texture that were present in the leaves themselves are nowhere in this photo. And I think that's the other part of the problem, the fact that I'm not familiar enough with the film I'm using to know what it's going to photograph well and what it's not.
So far, I'm not a big fan of Tri-X, even though I know that many other photographers swear by it. Fuji Acros, on the other hand, I absolutely loved almost all the shots from the one roll I've used of it so far.
So black and white continues to kind of elude me. And so whenever I stick a roll of it in my camera, my film shooting speed crawls to a standstill. I feel like it's very subject specific - great for people, patterns of light and shadow, cityscapes, and unpredictable for other uses, such as landscapes or, for example, photos of leaves.
So I guess I'm kind of asking a question here. Does anyone else out there shoot film? Black and white film? And if you do, do you have any insights?
I'm all ears here.