Film Dark Room, Pentax ME Super 35mm film SLR, Portrait, Rants and discussions

On the Fiddle

On the Fiddle. Pentax ME Super. SMC Pentax-M 50mm f/1.7 lens. Ilford HP5 Plus film developed in ID11.

I bought another eighteen 36 exposure AgfaPhoto Vista Plus 35mm films from Poundland in Peterborough yesterday.  That’s on top of the twenty that I recently bought from the Poundland in Kings Lynn.  I can’t resist those 36 exposure films for a quid each.  It’s ridiculously cheap.  Thing is though, I’m not totally happy with cross processing them all in b/w Ilford chemistry.  It’s sometimes cheap and convenient, but it’s not HP5.  All of these colour 35 mm films begging to be used.  I’m increasingly tempted to have a go at C41 colour film developing.  Just the film mind.  I’m looking at the Rollei Digibase C-41 LT20 Midi Kit 1L to start with.  A C41 chemistry kit sold online at FirstCall Photographic Ltd.

It claims to be sufficient to develop 20-24 films (presumably 35 mm), and depending on post & package costs, will cost me somewhere around £3 a film to develop.  I can actually get my film commercially developed locally for only £2.50, but I hate having to wait, and accepting his quality.  So, I’m thinking it over.


Olympus XA-2 - 50p camera project II, Rants and discussions, Uncategorized

Cross Processing 35mm Poundland Film

Looking Down. Olympus XA2 35mm compact camera. AgfaPhoto Vista Plus 200 film from Poundland. Cross processed in Ilford b&w chemicals / process.

Looking Down. As above image.

Looking Down. As top image.

Looking Down. As top photo.

Looking Down. As top image.

Looking Down. As top image.

Looking Down. As top image

Well the one use camera project failed – but while Nita was snapping away with a light leaking dog toy, I was using Poundland film in my trusty little Olympus XA2.  This film costs me a quid a roll of 35mm.  Labelled as AgfaPhoto (to distinguish it from the defunct Agfa) Vista Plus 200, it’s rumoured to be a repackaged variant of Fujifilm C200.  Incredible value colour film.  However, I’m not yet inspired enough to try and develop C41 film.  But I do have plenty of Ilford B&W chemicals and a Paterson tank.  I can get it commercially C41 process developed at a local photo lab or two, but that’s more expense, and I’m trying to be the tight fisted photographer.  To be honest, I could get it developed only (no prints) at one local photo lab for only three quid a film.  Tempting, but it’s nice to DIY isn’t it?

So cross process it was.  In the same tank as the Kodak GT800 that I posted on yesterday.  A dilution of 3:1 water/ ID11 stock at 20C for 22 minutes.  Inversions 10s in each minute.

The negatives are ugly, and you need to tweak the scanner to produce results on digitalisation.  I scan using my Epson Perfection V500 set for color negatives, but saving as 16 bit greyscale images.  A bit more tweaking post scan on Gimp, particularly on Levels.  I think that’s passable b&w film photography.  A quid a roll and cheap b&w home developing.  Cheapskate tight fisted film photography, and with the 50p compact camera!

Other News.

Poundland Film.

Talking about Poundland film, I have recently heard rumours that some stores are temporarily retailing 36 exposure AgfaPhoto Vista Plus 200, rather than the 24 exposure films.

A few years ago, Poundland stores were selling a mixture of colour 135 film types, but shifting to the AgfaPhoto brand.  At first, this was not a problem, as they were 36 exposure films, incredible value for GBP £1.00.  A local photo lab would C41 develop them for me (no prints) for £2.50 a film – regardless of 24 or 36 frame.  That worked out to an incredibly cheap rate of 8p per exposure – cost of film and developing!  I did buy quite a few, but when new supplies reached the stores a year ago, they were replaced by 24 exposure films.  Still great value, but less exposures for your pound.

I recently ran out of 36’s, and started to resort to 24’s, when I heard the rumour.  My local Poundland is still retailing the 24’s.  However, on a visit to Kings Lynn today, I popped in the Lynn branch …. and there sat a box with twenty beautiful AgfaPhoto Vista Plus 200 36 exposure 135 films!!!  Of course I bought the bloody lot.  The box underneath were 24’s.  Sorry Kings Lynn cheapskate photographers, I raided your supply.  Twenty quid for 720 x 35 mm exposure frames.  Now that’s tight fisted.

Dogs and animals, Sony DSLR A200 and Sony DT 50mm F/1.8mm SAM prime lens

Parrot Fashion

Baloo – a parrot’s perspective. Sony DSLR A200 camera. Sony AF DT 50mm f/1.8 SAM lens.

Photo of the Day I guess.  Our pet Senegal Parrot tends to get left out of the picture so to speak, while his Nemesis – the dreaded dog, gets into the lime light.  It’s really not fair, as Baloo is clearly the dominant and intellectually superior pet in the tight fisted household.  Indeed, if unleashed onto the dog, it’s like death from above.  A little Parrot with a BIG EGO.

Other news – it’s dying down now that Flickr Explore has moved onto a fresh Day, but the Poundland photo “Run like a Dog” 42 hours after posting onto my Flickr photostream, has clocked over 4,300 views, 300 faves, and nearly 60 comments.  I have said that your own opinion should count more than Internet popularism, but it is nice to have a photo with that ‘success’ occasionally.

BAD NEWS: This is a shocker, it’s going to hurt my pocket.  Poundland (the UK Discount store chain) have replaced their AgfaPhoto Vista Plus 200 rolls of 36 exposure film (35mm) for…. the same in 24 exposure lengths!  On being told, I rushed around my two nearest Poundland stores and found a total of seven remaining 36 exposure films, but then that’s it.  It’ll cost me 12.5p per exposure (including development), instead of the 8p value that I recieved from the 36 exposure films!  Ouch!

Pentax ME Super 35mm film SLR, Street and Protest

The Ten Quid Pentax ME Super SLR Camera

Recent photographs from the Pentax ME Super

On the way to the Bus Station, Norwich. Pentax ME Super SLR camera. SMC Pentax-M 50mm f/1.7 lens. AgfaPhoto Vista Plus 200 35mm film from Poundland. Scanned negative, a little post scan enhancement using free open source Gimp 2.8 software.

Quite pleased with some developed negatives from the Pentax ME Super.  Shows promise.  I bought this camera on Ebay for a tenner (GBP £10.00), as a sold as seen, untested.  I noticed that it had at sometime been dropped, and the film loading spool was on the huh (Norfolk for unlevel or bent).  The light seals were perished, but I the shutter mechanism still looked good, so I changed the light seals, and here are the early results.

Head in the Clouds, the oldest head shop in the UK. Pentax ME Super – as in above photo.

It is a nice camera to carry, very typical of Japanese semi auto (the Pentax ME Super auto exposure mode is in modern terms ‘aperture priority’, although unlike the Olympus OM10 of the same era, it did come fitted with full manual controls as standard), of its period some thirty years ago or so.  However, smaller than most other 35mm film SLRs of its period, small, light, and looks good.  Sporting the ‘kit lens’ of it’s day – the brilliant Pentax-M 50mm F1.7.  These photos were taken using Poundland colour 35mm film, but I have plans to use it with Ilford soon.

Both photos taken in Norwich – the city of my birth.  The Head in the Clouds is claimed as the oldest head shop in the UK, spreading love and peace since 1971.  Hasn’t changed a lot since I was a boy.

Film, 35mm, and scans, Olympus Trip 35, The East English Fens of East Anglia

Suits you Sir!

Evisons, Wisbech. Olympus Trip 35 camera. AgfaPhoto Vista Plus 200 35mm negative film from Poundland. Gimp 2.8 enhancement post scan with free open source software.

Evison is a traditional drapery and outfitters store, located in the North Cambridgeshire town of Wisbech.  It’s two floors are stuffed with goods – work boots for the brickie, compasses for the explorer, deer stalker hats for the gentleman, aprons for the butcher.  You’ll find a smartly dressed salesperson or two on each of it’s floors … “can I help you Sir?” .  Should you find what you are looking for (and there is a very good chance that you will), the smartly dressed sales assistant will hand write a little invoice from his book, for you to take down to the lady on the till.  It’s like stepping back fifty or more years.  I hope it continues to open.

Taken with one of my 32 year old Olympus Trip 35 cameras, on el cheapo Poundland 35mm film of course.  Suits you Sir!

Film, 35mm, and scans, Internet, Yashica AW Mini - 50p camera project

50p camera meets Staffy

Dudget camera meets Staffy. Yashica AW Mini compact camera. AgfaPhoto Vista Plus 200 35mm film from Poundland. Post neg scan enhancement using Gimp 2.8 free open source software.

Woof!  From the first roll from that Yashica AW Mini that I recently bought at a car boot sale in Wisbech, for 50p.  Now, this is not one of those fancy Yashica T compacts with Carl Zeiss lenses.  This is the budget AW (All Weather) Mini, circa 1991 production, featuring a plain Yashica lens.  It was immaculate when I bought it, but around the time that I took the above photo, the exposure button fell apart, and I lost the soft plastic cover.  It’s now held in with sellotape!

One issue with the camera, I wish that I could turn off that damned auto flash.  Never mind, I’ll regard it as part of it’s charm.  I love the dog owner’s leg, and his tucked in jogging bottoms.  For that reason, I’m submitting it as the first photo for my 50p camera gallery project.

Other news:  I’ve found this brilliant funny community website, called “You Are Not A Photographer“, where people submit awful photographs by Faux Photographers – people with no skill or training that with very little experience of photography, set themselves up as professionals, often with FaceBook professional photography pages, and advertising for business.  It sort of ties in with my own observations in earlier blogs, of beginners that give themselves FB pages and ‘photography studio’ names.

Film, 35mm, and scans, Internet, Olympus Trip 35

Poundland film – Poundland film group on Flickr

Village Tour through the Olympus Trip 35 -the grave headstone. Olympus Trip 35 camera. AgfaPhoto Vista Plus 200 film from Poundland

I’ve launched a Flickr Group called: Poundland Film and AgfaPhoto.  Discount 35mm film photos only

Poundland is a UK based discount store that offers goods for GBP £1.00 or less. At time of edit – USD $1.5 or 1.2 EUR.
In the past this has included Kodak ColorPlus 200 24 exposure, Kodak Ultramax 400, Ferrania Solaris 200, and now AgfaPhoto Vista Plus 200 – rumoured to be produced by Fujifilm as a variant of C200.

Cheap film bought in the UK at discount stores for a quid a roll. What can you do with it?
Cheap film from dollar stores outside of the UK also welcome
AgfaPhoto Vista Plus film photography welcome

Visit the Poundland Film Group on Flickr here