Last few days of 2023, and our Discord group of photographers managed to one last photo walk in. Sometimes it is so hard to find a few people to come shoot, but once in a while, everyone happened to be available and down to shoot. I shot three rolls of Ilford black and white (BW) film, namely XP2 Super, Delta 100 and HP5. It wasn’t really my plan to shoot only Ilford, but we might be able to see if there are any difference in these film stocks. I’m on the cynic camp when it comes to BW film – they are almost the same especially post editing.
Camera settings: Internal light meter determined rough exposure. All were shot at 1/125s at f/5.6 and f/8. Ilford XP2 Super is a 400 ISO C-41 film but it is slightly expired. Rule of thumb for expired color negative film is to overexpose by 1 stop every decade, but BW film tend to withstand the test of time without much adjustment. I shoot C-41 BW film as if it is just regular BW film, and for did not compensate for these.
The walk started near the Poet’s beach on the west bank of the Willamette. It was always under construction, and I guessed it is now open. There are some poems etched onto rocks along the beach. It was quiet.
Do I like XP2? Meh, XP2 feels like any default BW film. It was a boring, flat day, so maybe it didn’t pop. But I doubt it, I’m sure a higher contrast film will be more interesting. Then again, there is one thing XP2 shines in – development. XP2 is one of the few BW film that use the standard C-41 chemistry that still can be found everywhere in the world, and usually much cheaper, faster, and less prone to technical failure by the technician. Also… XP2 was used as a base for Harman to create brand new color film in 2023. So, I’m glad something like this exist.
Date: Dec 28th, 2023.
Issue 87. Volume 14. Chapter 6. MA205_P67