In my last entry, I wrote about my journey with two distinct film stocks, Kodak Portra 400 and Fujifilm Pro 400h. I have such mixed feelings about which film I love using. They are both great films but very different. One is very warm and slightly punchy, while one is cool toned and muted. In the right setting, Fujifilm, the cool toned film just shines. It soaks up light which I love. On the other hand, Portra is warm, contrasty and filled with color! I find that my style is often a combo of both. Warm, medium to low contrast, with pops of color. In the past, I’ve shot on Fuji and warmed it up to look like Portra. So, naturally, I’m thinking Why not just shoot Portra?
We first need to go back and remember why I started shooting Fuji in the first place. The results are just plain gorgeous. When shot in the right light, with the right subject, Fuji just shows off. Creamy skin tones, even colors, retained highlights in an outrageous setting with overexposure, ect, ect. And not just on the technical side, but on the aesthetic side, people are just attracted to Fujifilm images. They are almost ethereal and what so many “light and airy” photographers want these days. So much that many make the transition to film to get that look. On another more truthful side, the whole film revolution started because one photographer gained some fame from shooting this kind of film and everyone else followed because he probably became a millionaire and coveted photography authority from that specific style. And so, the trend became shooting with Fuji rated at 200 and metered for the shadows at 45 degrees downward. I love this look but it might be time for me to step into my own with film. And I’m debating that “my own” may be with the Portra line.
To supplement this post, I’ll re-post some images of one of my first rolls of Portra. I loved these images, and still do because they are of my friend Staci and here sweet baby Ansley! (Side note, Ansley just turned TWO!!! HOW CAN THAT BE?) Here is some Portra in all it’s glory. <3