Saturday 30 September 2023

Digital photography means your mistakes are never seen.

nikon f80 and nikkor sigma lenses

I've been without an SLR camera since I sold the Nikon D700. The Nikon 1 I had as a walk around camera failed. This is the second one. They don't seem very reliable so I didn't buy a third. Instead I returned to the Kodak when I went to Cornwall.  I was happy with the results but still hankered after something a bit better. I could have bought another digital Nikon, but for what I payed it would have been very low spec. The F80 was well reviewed and it was good to compare it with the rangefinder FED 4 of my youth.

I wrote about the film cameras I have; two belonged to my dad, and the third I hadn't used since I was a teenager. Here is a link to the FED 4 photowalk. It does have a low spec lens, so that may have been why the results were less than impressive.

I can use it with my remaining four lenses: Nikkor 50mm F1.8, 35-70mm F2.8, 80-200mm F2.8 and Sigma 300mm F4. It's not much heavier than the Kodak, and lighter than D series cameras.

I didn't see the results until the film was developed.

I had what I think you'd call developer anxiety. Knowing that someone would see every picture I took before I did, and maybe judge it. Many people say using film slows you down and makes you consider each shot. It did; but not in the way they mean. Everytime I pressed the shutter button I thought; what if it was out of focus, badly exposed, or shaky. When I left the film to be processed and then collected it I made a point of saying I was testing an old camera. Why!? When film was the only option I never gave it a thought. 

The first picture used the 35-70mm, the rest were shot through the 50mm.

I need to experiment more with the zoom lens. I'm not sure how much processing is done to produce the files I received. Some were noisier than I expected. 

A walk about didn't give me much inspiration.


small flowers

tangled undergrowth

So I had a coffee. And am very pleased with this shot.


I rode to a cafe with great views, and used the last few exposures. It wasn't comfortable carrying the camera; I once thought nothing of doing so. Having anything on my back now feels very odd, and sweaty.

bike and sky

coffee and cake

coffee and cake

tree sign

renault van

bike autumn leaves

The results were much better than from the FED. But I do wonder that if I could develop the film the results would be vastly different. Again, it's not something I would have considered before digital. I received the prints and remember being relieved there was no sticker on them saying they had been over or under exposed.

The next film is black and white. Two reasons for this: it was all the shop had, I've not used it before. It got me thinking about the possible subjects. I don't think it suits landscapes. Instead I'll look for grittyscapes. It's a different thought process than converting colour into monochrome. I'll try not to create clich├ęs. 

I have also got the two long lenses to try.