I had a lot of trouble deciding what to pack for this trip. I knew I wanted to shoot some film. In fact, I was more excited to shoot film than digital. This would be our fourth trip to Anguilla in seven years, and in my mind, I kept thinking, “done that.” I wanted a new challenge, to see Anguilla differently, so I decided to take my film on the road.
With that decided, I still had a tough time deciding what cameras to bring. I knew that the Canon 1v used the same lenses as my digital SLR, so I wasn’t really adding much in terms of weight/space requirements. However, after shooting medium format, I fell in love with the big negatives that my Mamiya Pro TL turned out. So I decided to take them both. The Mamiya is a modular system, so it breaks down really nicely to fit the available space. The Canon 1v was really no bigger than my Canon 5D Mark II. I removed the power grip from both cameras and it was not difficult. I will do a complete “What’s in my Bag” post after the holiday obligations slow down.
What was more difficult was deciding what film and how much film to bring. I love the idea of 220 film, twice the exposures from the same space, but only Portra 400 comes in 220, so if I wanted to shoot Fuji 400H or Ektar 100, I had to bring a 120 insert as well as the 220 insert. I opted to bring both the 120 and 220 inserts (times two in case of failure) plus two backs so that I could change between the films. As for the film, here’s what I ultimately packed:
5 rolls of Portra 400 -220 (shot all 5)
1 roll of Portra 400 -120 (shot 1)
4 rolls of Fuji 400H (shot all 4)
1 roll of Ektar 100-120 (shot 1)
2 rolls of Portra 160-120 (shot 1 of 2)
1 roll of Portra 400-35 (did not shoot)
2 rolls of Portra 160-35 (shot 1 of 2)
5 rolls of Fuji 400H-35 (shot 4 of 5)
2 rolls of Ektar 100-35 (shot 1 of 2).
I ended up shooting about 1 roll of 35mm a day and about 40 shots on the Mamiya a day, and had plenty of fun both shooting and soaking up the sun & beach. I experimented again and again, and hopefully some of those experiments will be successful.
My film is now in the very capable hands of the team at Richard Photo Lab. Hopefully, I didn’t pooch my shots too badly and we’ll have something to share. Stay tuned!
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