M8 28mm processed in lightroom & elements, comments welcome as usual
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Some moments are so special that they must by no means be disturbed. Instead, the camera is there to capture as inconspicuously as possible what is happening, without influencing the moment. In such situations, cinematographers like to use DSLR cameras and lenses of the Compact Prime CP.2 and Compact Zoom CZ.2 series from Carl Zeiss. They are light and easy to handle, and they impress with their excellent image performance.
The Compact Prime CP.2 series, with its 15 fixed focal lengths from 15 to 135 mm, and the zoom lenses Compact Zoom CZ.2 70-200/T2.9 and Compact Zoom CZ.2 28-80/T2.9, both launched in 2012, are extremely popular with professionals and ambitious amateurs alike. Thanks to the five different interchangeable mounts for PL, EF, F, MFT and E, the lenses can be used on a wide range of current and future camera models. The interchangeable mount and full-frame coverage (36 x 24mm) make the Compact family of lenses future-proof and versatile, on both HDSLR and HD video cameras and professional cine cameras. All lenses are characterized by their robustness, flexibility, an almost uniform rotation angle of 300 degrees and optimal handling. This combination of features makes them ideally suited for every demand on the film set.
German cinematographer Tom Fährmann, who shot the motion pictures “The Miracle of Bern” and “Pope Joan,” had to film his latest project without being seen or heard. To meet these demands, he chose as his equipment a full-format DSLR camera, the Compact Prime CP.2 lenses and the new Compact Zoom CZ.2 lenses from Carl Zeiss.
The Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra is one of the best orchestras in the world. When it rehearses with star conductors such as Simon Rattle or Mariss Jansons, the atmosphere in the room is one of intense concentration. Capturing that special energy and sizzling atmosphere in the air is what Fährmann’s latest film project is all about. The image film reveals extremely intense moments of musical virtuosity.
Fährmann was given complete freedom to develop the idea and concept. “I was surprised and happy that the orchestra management did not give me any guidelines to follow. This trust motivated me. However, the challenge was all the greater to show the best of my abilities,” he says. Fährmann summoned the courage to propose that part of the film be made without sound. The silence should make the viewer curious to hear the actual sounds of the music. As for the second part of the film, Fährmann did not want to underlay it with music but rather with the sounds of building machinery in order to serve as a contrast to the fragility and sensibility of classical music. The third part portrays the members of the orchestra who in their totality — also visually — represent the body of sounds — that make up this orchestra. The orchestra could be convinced of all three ideas. The films will be available in the future on the orchestra’s website.
In order to capture that special atmosphere of concentration during the rehearsals, it was imperative that Fährmann not stand out or attract attention in any way. If he had, it would have influenced the mood. “No one gave me any rules, but I realized immediately that the magic of the moment must under no circumstances be jeopardized,” he says. Every movement and every shifting of technical equipment were absolutely taboo as they would have disturbed the tightly organized rehearsal phases. In addition, Fährmann could not use additional light and extra personnel, nor could he change lenses and his position during a rehearsal.
“I needed equipment that could guarantee the highest degree of flexibility in such a tight space. At the same time, the results had to be brilliant. For these scenes, only the brand-new high-speed Compact Zoom CZ.2 lenses from Carl Zeiss came into consideration,” says Fährmann, who can look back on a 25-year career. It was impossible to use a large camera, an additional person, spotlights and other equipment on the crowded stage. And even if all of these things had fit, they would have created too much distraction. Therefore, Fährmann was not only dependent on the existing light during the rehearsals; he was also completely on his own in making the film. It was a new situation for Fährmann, who had previously almost always worked in larger teams. His strategy this time was to rely on his feeling, observe a lot, experiment, stay alert, and film an “endless” amount of material.
With the Compact Zoom CZ.2 28-80/T2.9 and CZ.2 70-200/T2.9 lenses, he was able to tell the story in great detail and to choreograph a wide range of scenes by consciously deploying focus and out of focus. “I really like the close focusing of the Compact Zoom, especially of the 28-80mm. The depth of field is 4-5 millimeters, almost just like macro. This opens up many creative possibilities to set accents and to let the harmonious bokeh play the accompaniment role,” explains Fährmann. As he was almost always ‘embedded’ among the musicians while at the same time wanting to remain ‘invisible’, the light and compact design of the Compact Zoom turned out to be a real advantage.
For scenes that took place outside the normal rehearsals, Fährmann used a set of Compact Prime CP.2 lenses that he had with him. With the 135mm he took portraits of the musicians, while the shorter focal lengths up to 15 millimeters were used for full-view images.
Since the beginning of his career as a cameraman, Fährmann has worked exclusively with ZEISS lenses, for example the ARRI/ZEISS Master Prime lenses. “When you’re looking for the best, you automatically end up with these lenses,” he explains. The distortion-free images and harmonious bokeh are not the only reasons for his decision to use lenses from Carl Zeiss. They also provide the best-possible sharpness in the end result and he is impressed with their extreme mechanical resilience. These features have proved themselves again and again during every film project Fährmann has worked on. “After experiencing some extreme situations, I know that whatever happens, ZEISS lenses will never abandon me.”
About Tom Fährmann
Tom Fährmann is a cameraman, photographer and screenwriter. He has won numerous awards for his work as cameraman and has filmed motion pictures with such well-known directors as Sönke Wortmann (“Pope Joan” and “The Miracle of Bern”) and Volker Schlöndorff (“Ulzhan – the forgotten light “). Fährmann also photographs advertising and image films for well-known brands, including Mercedes Benz, BMW and Jil Sander. As a guest professor at the Salzburg University of Applied Sciences, Fährmann teaches students about the art of making films.
- no edge markings (at all)
- ISO 1.6
- blue emulsion on one side only (unlike x-ray films I read about online)
- no anti-halation layer (I snipped a short unexposed section off and it's translucent)
- wrapped on a lab core
- standard 35mm film perforations (not the shape used for motion picture stock)
- slightly thinner than standard Kodak bases, but not as thin as polyester
- easy to cut with scissors (as opposed to polyester, which is not)
- film base is a slightly gray-brown color and the image is somewhat low contrast
- extremely fine detail
- no funky smell like old or nitrate films can get
I've developed this in D-76 and Microdol-X and both delivery fine results.
Here are a couple of sample pictures (Microdol-X):
I've thought variously that it may be x-ray film, microfilm, 2383 (because it was in the box and has no remjet backing), or Eastman 5234 that has lost a couple of stops with age, or something I've never heard of. I'm hoping someone here knows enough about obscure film stock to point me in the right direction. I have XTOL and Dektol (XTOL made up) and can run a test of this exposed at ISO 6 and developed in XTOL, as Digital Truth suggests for 5234 this weekend, if that would be of use.
If it is 2383, would the magenta edge markings be lost during development as black and white negative film? Is it worth asking my local photo lab to run this as either E-6 or C-41? There's no remjet to muck up their machines.
Thank you, everyone, for help and suggestions. I'm hoping I can identify this film so I can use it better than I have been.
David Attached Images
Thing is, the only 4x5 film I have in hand is TXP, a film with which I'm not especially familiar. The room isn't especially bright; I'll drop by and meter tomorrow, but I'm guessing I might have to go to EI 1250 or so to be able to handhold. PC-TEA seems likely to be my best developing option (the MDC has an appropriate time for Xtol 1+2, which normally is interchangeable with PC-TEA). I have Diafine, but two baths in trays sounds like a pain. Or I could mix up a batch of Donald Qualls's "Super Soup" if I need a really extreme push; if I remember aright he got something like EI 5000 with TXP, but I don't know what the results looked like.
Well, this isn't a mission-critical event, just something I'm shooting for fun. (I'm old enough to be one of those "Who ever heard of a preschool graduation?" people.) So I don't mind doing some experimenting, but I'm curious if anyone has done this push or something similar with TXP before and can share any results or advice.
1) Rollei Brochure 1932 (K2 and BabyRollei) Aus$ 25
2) Art Deco Rolleicord Advertising Brochure -- Aus$ 40
published in December 1933 (print code no 3312)
3) Rollei brochure 3611 (November 1936) Aus$ 25
4) Rollei Advertising Brochure E1054 (Oct 1954) -- Aus$ 20
5) Rollei Advertising Brochure E0755 (July 1955) -- Aus$ 20
6) Rollei Advertising Brochure E1255 (July 1955) -- Aus$ 20
Payment via PAYPAL.
Discount if you take multiples.
Free postage within Australia, add Aus$5 for overseas postage.
having fallen out of love (again) with my Koni-Omega*, I have been on the lookout for something a bit different to add to my arsenal, without spending a mint. This time, I think I might look at a TLR for a change and being a Minolta Fanboi from way back, I have been thinking something along the lines of an Autocord.
I have had a bit of a look around and have found a bit of info (especially about breaking the focus lever and mechanism), but am after some general opinions on what to look out for with them and what Models to leave behind or seriously look at.
Any opinions out there?
*Ahh the KO - it is such a temperamental thing. When you nail that focus, it is the best damn camera in the world...but when it goes all awry, its a piece of crap. Yes, I know it could probably benefit with a CLA, but TBH, I don't really want to over capitalize on it!
Potentially a weird question, but are some 120 films (well, films + backing paper I guess) thicker than others?
I've just started shooting through a box of Foma 100 in my GF670, and I have noticed that towards the end of the roll, it gets harder and harder to wind - by the last two or three frames, I have to apply about as much force as I can muster just to wind it on... to the point that I am worried about breaking something. I've shot about seven or eight different types of film through it, and never had a problem.
Am I just being paranoid and overprotective of my baby (she is so pretty and sleek, but with retro charm!), or is there actually an issue at play here?
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