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  #1  
Old 28th April 2010, 07:56 AM
Kev M Kev M is offline
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Default Mono film for portraits

I've recently shot some portraits on Neopan400 and the skin tones have come out a bit more grey than I was expecting (not having shot many portraits before). I don't think it's under exposure but perhaps a local contrast thing or perhaps a film type thing. I was reading something about how different B&W films react to different colours and wondered if perhaps there is a better B&W film for portrait work (the proviso is 120 and ISO400).

Alternatively does anyone use coloured filters when shooting portraits and if so what colour filter is best?

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Kev
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Old 28th April 2010, 08:02 AM
Dave miller Dave miller is offline
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Why the stipulation for ISO400?

I think the use of a green filter can suppress skin blemishes.
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Old 28th April 2010, 12:56 PM
Richard Gould Richard Gould is offline
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Personally I like hp5+ for portraits on 400,but I tend to use a green filter, but I find the best film for portraits is fp4+, with a yellow filter, but again it is a matter of personal taste, and you will find others have their own preferances, the only way is to try different films untill you get the results you olike, and stick to it,Richard
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Old 28th April 2010, 02:25 PM
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Orthocromatic films used to be the standard for portraiture, being mainly blind to red light it helped to suppress skin blemishes, as Dave has said a green filter with panchromatic film will help.
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Old 28th April 2010, 03:03 PM
Kev M Kev M is offline
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Thanks for the responses, I'm not normally a fan of HP5 but I think I'll pick up a roll or two and give it another chance.

The reason for ISO400 is that I shoot a lot with hotshoe type flashguns. Not exactly big on power when combined with modifiers such as umbrellas or softboxes, especially when I need to stop down the Bronica to maintain a sensible DoF.

Below is an example of one of my early attempts at split grade printing, although probably not the best due to the interpretation of the scanner, the monitor and my eyes.

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Old 28th April 2010, 03:43 PM
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Martin Aislabie Martin Aislabie is offline
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Hmmm, not 100% sure but I think Green enhances skin blemishes & Yellow ~ Orange suppresses them.

If you are doing Males portraits, the Green filter enhances the skin tones and gives him that sun tanned/weathered "he-man" look

Yellow ~ Orange suppresses spots/pimples/... - which is good for female portraits.

If you use Yellow or Orange filters of what ever density, you need to watch out for disappearing lips - the lip colour needs to be enhanced to maintain a normal look.

I prefer FP4 for Portraits for the more natural skin tones it gives (IMO)

FP4 has more red sensitivity than Delta or HP5

I have never tried Acros or T-Max on portraits

The Robert White B+W Filter section gives you some hints as to what sort of filter you require depending on the effect you wish to obtain - http://www.robertwhite.co.uk/products.asp?PT_ID=191
Just open the section on each filter and the effect on skin tone is described in the text at the top

Martin
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Old 28th April 2010, 03:47 PM
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Barry Barry is offline
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Martin I think RW have their red and green images reversed?
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Old 28th April 2010, 04:02 PM
Dave miller Dave miller is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Barry View Post
Martin I think RW have their red and green images reversed?
You beat me to it Barry.
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Old 28th April 2010, 04:14 PM
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Martin Aislabie Martin Aislabie is offline
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Yes they have had those two pictures reversed for ages

However, if you open the section on Green Filters it says :-

"Green Filter 061 (13)
This filter differs from the above yellow-green filter primarily because of its increased red attenuation. A red roof or red flowers will become even darker, as will red lips and a dark tan and, unfortunately, so will skin blemishes. This filter is ideal for nature photography. In object photography, it is good for darker reds and lighter greens. Its filter factor is appr. 3."



Then if you open the section on dark yellow it says :-

"Dark Yellow Filter 023 (15)
The even greater blue suppression and the attenuation into the blue-green range leads to a further increase in the effects described above. Interesting for snow scenes under a blue sky, because the darkened blue shadows in the snow make the shapes of the landscape look more dimensional. Freckles and skin blemishes are diminished strongly, but lips are rendered more pale (to compensate for you may use a dark lipstick!). Its filter factor is approximately 3."



Martin
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Old 29th April 2010, 10:29 AM
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Neopan is fine for portraits. To me, greyness is usually a sign of underexposure, or taking your meter reading for the skin as a verbatim Zone V.
Am I stating the obvious in saying, downrate the film and expose the skin on Zone VI or even VII and use a compensating developer?
Phil
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