DFC Roll #3

Another fun outing, this time shooting the countryside and abandonment. My intent was to shoot a roll of Tri-X by changing my jpeg Creative Filter to one of the monochrome options, but I forgot that when my camera goes to sleep it snaps back to the Custom Mode settings without any additional changes I made. To make them ‘stick’ I needed to overwrite the Custom Mode with the current settings and I forgot. One thing I don’t like about choosing a monochrome filter is that the EVF also changes to monochrome. All of the Creative Filters and the Photo Styles show on the EVF so you can see the effect. Nice, but it doesn’t serve the DFC purpose. I guess I’ll have to live with it though.

Deciding to leave the filter setting where I had it, I thought that I could simply apply a different Camera Matching Profile to the shots when I imported them into Lightroom. Nope. They are not available when it’s a jpeg file, only RAW files have these as options. Darn. Instead I applied the standard Adobe Monochrome profile to the jpegs. Unfortunately the filter style I had active was Expressive which boosts color saturation and luminosity and basically makes things bright and cheerful, definitely not what I had in mind. So those values provided the foundation for the monochrome conversion and changed things up a bit. Some of it works nicely in a High Key sort of way, but others look normal enough.

So with a roll of Tri-X in mind, I had the ISO set to 400. Manual exposure mode. I used two system lenses – the Vario G 12-35mm f/2.8 and the Vario G 35-100mm f/2.8, both with the lens stabilization turned off, but with focus peaking enabled. I sort of liked manually focusing and shooting in manual, having to evaluate light and tonal values in my head and imagine that I was getting it right. I think I had more fun with this roll than the first two. Some of that was when I got home – I didn’t have hundreds of photos to sort through and process. Of course I can process the RAW files if I want, but I feel free of the obligation to do so. Definitely and upside. Sometimes I just get overwhelmed by the complexity of post processing and it’s nice to ditch it when it starts to feel like a burden. Keeps me from burnout.

Ok, so here it is –

#1 – 1/160 @ f/9 35mm

  • Focus is good, exposure, too

#2 – 1/200 @ f/9 21mm

  • Good angle & focus
  • A little underexposed

#3 1/200 @ f/9 16mm

  • Good focus
  • Horizon a little tilted
  • Unbalanced composition

#4 1/160 @ f/9 19mm

  • Doesn’t work well in B&W
  • Little over exposed
  • Focus is good

#5 1/160 @ f/10 35mm

  • Exposure & focus good
  • Composition feels static


#6 1/125 @ f/10 35mm

  • Little overexposed
  • Better composition than above

#7 1/125 @ f/10 35mm

  • Decent exposure, good focus
  • Distracting lower border w/plants
  • Should have zoomed in


#8 1/160 @ f/10 31mm

  • Not a great subject for B&W
  • Focus & exposure ok
  • Tried hard to get things level – the silo tilts

#9 1/160 @ f/10 31mm

  • Accidentally hit the shutter twice

#10 1/320 @ f/7.1 48mm

  • Silos get lost in the sky
  • Silos too close to the top of the frame
  • Slightly overexposed
  • Good focus

#11 1/320 @ f/7.1 48mm

  • Silos have room, but still get lost in sky
  • Should have reduced exposure

#12 1/100 @ f/9 27mm

  • Tire intersects with tree
  • A touch overexposed
  • But I like the high-key result

#13 1/100 @ f/10 26mm

  • Awkward composition
  • Tilted horizon

#14 1/160 @ f/11 16mm

  • Awkward composition
  • Subject gets lost in B&W
  • Exposure & focus good

#15 1/160 @ f/11 16mm

  • Not sure if losing the log in the fg was good
  • Subject even more lost

#16 1/160 @ f/11 17mm

  • With the log is better, but still feels off
  • Good focus & exposure

#17 1/160 @ f/8 27mm

  • Decent exposure & focus
  • Wish for more leading line in the road

#18 1/160 @ f/8 27mm

  • Bit better framing
  • Good details in the darks

#19 1/160 @ f/5.6 35mm

  • Boring composition due to stuff in the next yard on the left
  • Tilted?
  • Exposure & focus good

#20 1/160 @ f/6.3 25mm

  • Better composition, but still meh
  • Seems underexposed, should have stayed open a stop

#21 1/160 @ f/6.3 21mm

  • Should have walked closer
  • Focus seems soft
  • Decent exposure, but could stand to be a bit lighter

#22 1/160 @ f/4 21mm

  • Overexposed, but better details
  • Awkward composition because of that big tree

#23 1/400 @ f/7.1 21mm

  • Backlit and underexposed even though I was trying to overexpose
  • Cut off top of tree

#24 1/400 @ f/7.1 21mm

  • Same problems with a different position

#25 1/160 @ f/9 39mm

  • Not bad – still can see detail in the sky
  • Focus good and composition decent (had to avoid house just out of frame on the left)

#26 1/200 @ f/9 35mm

  • Underexposed

#27 1/125 @ f/9 64mm

  • Lens too short
  • Telephone poles are distracting

#28 1/100 @ f/9 85mm

  • Better without poles
  • Birds disappear in B&W

#29 1/100 @ f/9 85mm

  • Blurry

#30 1/100 @ f/9 85mm

  • Birds too small
  • Horizon tilted

#31 1/100 @ f/8 80mm

  • Why did I bother? Oh because cranes!
  • Focus is ok
  • Should have brought the long lens

#32 1/100 @ f/4.5 27mm

  • Bright red bus still works in B&W
  • Composition good
  • Focus & exposure good

#33 1/100 @ f/4.5 21mm

  • New foreground weeds distracting

#34 1/100 @ f/4.5 13mm

  • Decent composition this way, but should have cut out that tree on the right
  • Should have worked reflection in windshield better

#35 1/100 @ f/4.5 12mm

  • Hit the shutter before I was ready so the framing is way off

Since that was my last exposure, I had to stop there unfortunately. It’s labeled 35 because although it’s the 36th exposure, one picture is of the inside of my lens cap and no one wants to see that. Luckily, the bus isn’t far from the house and I pass it often so I can try again. Actually have been meaning to for a long time. It should be a good one in snow since it’s bright red. Will load up some “color film” next time.

And some notes for next time. I may try to use various filters with another roll of Tri-X. Not physical ones, but digital ones that mimic red, orange, yellow and green filters that were often used in black and white photography to increase contrast and darken blue skies. I may even dial in some digital grain since Tri-X had a particularly noticeable grain structure. Photographers knew how to use that grain to enhance the emotional effect of their images. I can probably save this as a Custom Photo Style and quickly add it to the Custom Mode that I use for DFC sessions. If I remember, lol.

I can do something similar with the color Photo Styles in the G9 as well. There are 4 slots for custom style settings and I can try to mimic film looks with these. Like Velvia v. Kodachrome. Each Photo Style can be changed from the standard – sharpness, noise reduction, saturation, color tone and contrast can all be increased or decreased and so I might be able to mimic certain film types. Could be interesting to try. Photo Styles can be applied to RAW files, but Creative Filters only to Jpegs. Like Photo Styles, these can be tweaked once engaged – mostly this just strengthens or weakens the effect, but it’s a nice idea and one I’ll definitely explore for my next “roll”.

If this is your first time reading about the Digital Film Challenge and want to know what the heck loony thing this is, head on over to the DFC Headquarters for the low down.

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