Tuesday, March 18, 2014

CineStill iso 800 Tungsten Balanced Color Film - Something Else to Try

Image Source: http://aphotocontributor.typepad.com/aphotocontributor/2014/03/pretty-palate.html

I read a very interesting post on the blog "APhotoContributor," about a type of film I've never used before, known as "CineStill." It's an iso 800 film, color balanced for tungsten light sources. Not something I'd want to use every day. In fact, I think I've only used tungsten-balanced film once or twice, and it was film that a friend gave to me. The author used a conversion filter (85B) when shooting the film in daylight.

(Click Here) to see the post on APhotoContributor. There are lots of examples shot on this film, in many different lighting situations.

So why would I be interested in trying this film? I think it could be a very interesting way to shoot low light concerts in color. Granted, many modern music venues use the dreaded LED light sources, which are impossible to balance for. The issue is that they only emit a very narrow wavelength range, so you get full saturation in one color channel, nothing in the others. But, for those beloved stages still lit with filtered tungsten lights, this could be very interesting.

The CineStill film is available from Freestyle, but for quite a high price ($9 per roll). I'm going to assume these are 36 exposure rolls, but don't know that for sure. CineStill can be processed in normal C41 chemistry (what your few remaining drugstores who develop film use). I would send mine to The Darkroom (thedarkroom.com).

What makes the film even more interesting is that you can push it to iso 3200. That would definitely come in handy for some low light music clubs.

(Click Here) to see CineStill on Freestyle's site.

What I may do is try a roll or two, then see if I can replicate the look using my Leica M9 and adjustments in Lightroom, similar to what I've already done with Ilford Delta 3200.

I'm discovering new things to try, working between film and digital. What I've come to realize is that I should not try to make the same image style with my Leica M9 at iso 1600 as I would at iso 200. Once I understand that, it opens some doors. If I'm emulating Delta 3200, with its high grain and contrast, shooting the M9 at iso 1600 is no problem whatsoever. The grain added in Lightroom works just fine with the CCD noise generated in the M9 at such a high iso setting.
I feel like I'm leaving a plateau in learning over the past couple of months, and things are getting more interesting again.