I have a roll of Kodak Portra 400 that I had developed at home myself a while back for a shoot I did with my girlfriend, but I never got the negatives scanned. I will do that soon. However, I recently picked up a few more rolls of Portra 400, and shot one of them around my new Colorado neighborhood; I had it developed and scanned at my local Mike's Camera, where I am now also happily employed! ;)
So, a while back, I just loaded up a roll of Kodak Portra 400 into my "trusty" Canon AE-1, and went out into the neighborhood with my Canon FD 35mm ƒ/2 S.S.C. lens attached. I put trusty into quotes, because when I got out there, my light meter started to act up again. I've been having this problem with my AE-1 recently, and it's not the battery, as it's fully-charged. Sometimes, the needle will move, and other times, I have to fool around with the dials before it will do anything. And on this particular day, I had just decided to shoot using the truly-trusty "Sunny 16" technique.
For those of you that don't know: on bright, sunny days, you set the lens' aperture to ƒ/16, and the shutter speed to approximate the film speed equivalent (in this case, I shot the Portra at the box speed of 400, and set the shutter speed to the closest 1/500th/sec). Eventually, the meter started working again, and I was able to confirm that it indeed wanted ƒ/16. If it's a more cloudy day or you're photographing in a shaded area, you can adjust to taste by shooting at ƒ/11 or ƒ/8, depending upon the light available.
I shot half the roll this way, and called it a day. Below are some photos from the first half of my roll using the Canon FD 35mm ƒ/2 S.S.C. lens. ;)
Kodak Portra 400 -- Shot at box speed
I had been meaning to get a selfie on film with my film camera, and here we are. Finally one that I sort of like. I'm still new to the Denver area, and was exploring the area this day. :)
This was the first actual photo that I took on this roll of Portra 400. I was really happy to see how the colors turned out. I also love the grain, though maybe next time I'll try Portra 160. Anyhow, this is a little train crossing area close to my apartment, and I really like all of the colorful murals in the neighborhood. ;)
Ever since I moved here, I had been wanting to take a photo of this giant puzzle piece in the middle of a nearby traffic circle. It just called to me, and I noticed an extremely loud fire truck in the background. I liked this one. :)
Along my trek, I noticed this Jason Voorhees figure that sat between two skulls in the window of a local business. How could I resist taking a photo of this?! I'm a huge Friday the 13th fan, in case you didn't know. ;) I really love how the shades of blue came out.
There are so many colorful buildings and apartment complexes in my neighborhood: from bright oranges to bright purples. It's a really beautiful place, and I have so much more to capture on film.
I think this image above is a really great representation of the colors that Kodak Portra is capable of delivering, and I absolutely love it!
Here, I'm standing beneath the orange tree from the photograph above. I was waiting to cross to the other side of the other street, and saw this man pull up on a bike, so I snapped a picture. Again, I love the colors here so much. :)
A nice piece of architecture that was under construction on a busy street corner.
I actually snapped this shot right outside of Mike's Camera the very day that I went in to sign the employee contracts. Yes, I carried my Canon AE-1 with me to do that. Haha. =P
This picture was taken at golden hour just out front of my apartment. I was still using the 35mm lens, and wanted to check out the bokeh, as well as the colors. It really turned out beautifully.
If you're curious what the bokeh is like on the Canon FD 35mm ƒ/2 S.S.C., well... here you are! I love the way this lens renders, personally. ;)
Another photo taken in the front of my apartment.
Alright, so here's where things change up a bit. The photo above was taken on a completely different day (one of my days off from work), and with a completely different lens -- the Canon nFD 50mm ƒ/1.4 -- which I used for the rest of this roll of Kodak Portra 400. ;) These following photos are from some places I found while exploring my new neighborhood.
I always found these power grids to be really interesting, and I wanted to photograph the area from the moment I saw it.
There are lots of old railroads and train/tramway tracks around here. A bit off-topic, but there is lots of rich history here in Colorado if you're into old school locomotives and steam engines, and the like; I have already planned a photo series that I want to do very much on the topic, and I'd like to make a zine or some kind of photo book, also. If you're interested in seeing/reading something like that, please let me know in the comments!! <3
This is honestly one of my favorite photos from the rolls, and it actually turned out even better than I could have hoped for. Not sure why I like it, but it just seems rather mysterious to me.
This just might be my favorite photo on this roll. It just sort of came together in a way that I had envisioned. Nothing too special, but I really like the depth of everything in the photos, and I also like that the mountains are subtly hiding at the horizon.
A full shot of the same power grid from before on my way back home.
By the time I got back to the bottom of my street, it was golden hour, and I snapped the photo above. It looks exceptionally beautiful in person, and I am so happy that I was able to capture it on 35mm film.
What can I say? Overall, I was super-impressed with the way this roll of Kodak Portra 400 turned out, and the lab guy at Mike's Camera did a great job on the scans, so thanks, man! Anyways, I have another unexposed roll of this that I will try to shoot and get developed/scanned soon for a possible project. Now that I'm working at the camera store, I won't have nearly as much free time to shoot, but I will try to do some photo projects on my off days. So, what's next? I think I'm gonna grab a roll of Kodak Ektar 100 to try out. I've been dying to shoot some of that stuff, and I might as well do it soon, while I'm on my color negative kick. I still have a strong preference for black and white photography, and I will definitely shoot more b&w stuff when I can. But for now, I am enjoying color. Thanks so much for reading! ;) <3