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Fuji Provia 400x


MPerson

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Qualifying statement: the last roll of colour film I shot was in 1969!

 

I am starting a year long project in October which involves our local allotment society. Naturally this has to involve colour. The plan is:

 

1. during the non-growing season- Oct to Mar - all B&W (TriX & Neopan 1600) and the D2.

 

2. during the growing season all colour - I have plumped for Provia 400x along with the D2

 

I have been struck by the colours of the 400x and like the idea that it is easy to scan and can have just a touch of grain. For the film I will use the MP with 35 Cron ASPH exclusively.

 

As this is a whole new world for me I would appreciate any advice/experience on using this film - rating and exposure etc.

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Hi Andy, the last time I worked with provia 400 was in 1997-1998. It was used to photograph a live stage performance of a celebrity entertainer to promote his show. It was shot with a Hasselblad, and I was able to push it about a stop and the grain/contrast held up pretty well. Unfortunately, the skintones were really awful...reddish and crabby. Provia was always well known back then for having crabby skintones. I processed Provia 100 on a daily basis for many years so it was easy for me to see that the 400 pushed had far worse skintones in comparison. The studio I worked for would never have used the film if not for the specific needs of the client for transparency film. I have no idea if the newer version is better than the older version, but my instinct would prefer color negative simply for the skintones.

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I shot a 6 month long project on 135 - 400x about 6 months ago. I processed it all myself, which I suppose would have given slightly inferior results than a lab, but I wanted the 'home-made' look. The grain is very good for the speed and still pleasing but noticeable pushed to 800. I don't know exactly how images from the D2 look but will these and the provia compliment each other?

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Andy -- In 2006/2007 I shot Provia 400 almost exclusively for around six months. I don't think I ever got to be quiteas good at using the particular properties of slide film as I wanted to be, but I certainly ennjoyed the look of Provia, especially its more accentuated grain when pushed. I certainly didn't see 'crabby skin tones' as one poster has observed.

 

Just out of curiousity, can I ask why B&W during the non-growing season and colour the rest of the time. I can see the need for extra speed during the darker months but pushed Provia could give you this. I can also see that B&W will emphasise the 'dead' times and offer a particular aesthetic. But wil the two together make up a coherent whole, do you think?

 

Provia scanned brilliantly, in my experience.

 

cheers

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Matt - thanks. I will be shooting RAW with the D2 at 400 and I have LR set up to give a very close match. I need to do some tests - whilst we have the light and the colour down there - and see how I get on with the 400x.

 

Alun - Winter and the dead season, the allotment holders and their winter work, cold and wet emphasised by the B&W. What little green is down there will look murky anyway.

 

Followed by the growing season in colour. I will do some shots through the winter in colour just to see but I am not convinced it would have the impact of the seasonal changes.

 

One of the reasons I chose the 400x is quite a few have said it is a gem to scan.

 

Thanks chaps.

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