36 Exposures of Portra 160

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Last month I loaded a 36 exposure roll of Portra 160 film into my Asahi Pentax S1 SLR, and attached a Super-Takumar 28mm f/3.5 lens to it. I walked along a trail that borders a ranch and leads to Farmington Bay, which is a wetland near the shore of the Great Salt Lake in Utah, and I snapped a bunch of pictures. I hadn’t shot Portra for a number of years, so I was excited to get the film back from the lab.

Portra is a line of films that Kodak introduced in 1998. As the name implies, it was designed for portrait photography, although it has been used for many different genres, as it’s good for more than just portraits. Kodak made Portra in three different ISOs: 160, 400 and 800. The ISO 160 and 400 versions originally had two options: Neutral Color (NC) and Vivid Color (VC). In 2011 Kodak redesigned Portra, and they did away with the Neutral and Vivid versions, making instead only one option in each ISO. Portra has been a popular film since its introduction.

My 36 exposures of Portra came back from the lab yesterday. I was excited to see the results! As I viewed the scans on my computer, I couldn’t help but recall my great appreciation for this film and film photography. Portra 160 is wonderful! It makes me want to ditch digital and go back to my analog roots, as there’s something special about film that you just can’t replicate with modern cameras. Below are some of those 36 exposures of Portra 160 that I shot last month. Enjoy!

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You might notice that the date of this article is April 1st, which is April Fools Day. I did not, in fact, shoot these pictures on Portra film. They were captured on my iPhone. Just kidding! Yesterday I shot 36 exposures of a new film simulation recipe that will be called “Portra 160” on my Fujifilm X-T30. I did, in fact, use the 28mm Super-Takumar lens. This new film simulation recipe, which is what I used for these pictures, is compatible with all X-Trans III & IV cameras. I hope to publish the recipe later this week, so stay tuned!

17 comments

  1. tim matson · April 1

    what do you use for a battery for the Pentax?

    or separate light meter?

    look forward to digital portas…!

    Tim Matson

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ritchie Roesch · April 1

      Honestly, I mostly just take an educated guess based on experience what the exposure should be. If I’m not sure, I have a light meter app on my phone.

      Like

  2. I really like the look of the simulation you have here. Excited to see what you have come up with.

    With all this extra time on my hands, I might start digging into creating more film sims myself. I like the monochrome ones I’ve built out so far, but might dip my hands into some color simulations.

    As always, great articles and thanks for sharing!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ritchie Roesch · April 1

      You are welcome! It’s great to see others diving into the settings and experimenting, and creating different looks. It’s awesome! Be sure to share what you come up with.

      Like

  3. Ricardo Richon Guzman · April 1

    Awesome!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Mark Santostefano · April 1

    you got some nice tones in those photos. I love portra… are used it all the time when I shot weddings during the film days. And my Pentax Spotmatic F Is still a great camera

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ritchie Roesch · April 2

      Thank you! There are so many great film cameras that, while old, still work good. Pentax made some great cameras back in the day.

      Like

      • Mark Santostefano · April 2

        Yes I have a collection of film cameras that I grew up with over the years And I still shoot with each one on a regular basis. My favorites Are the Leica M2, Miranda Sensorex And my Nikon FE2 and Rollei 35s… Along with a Pentax! I like Fuji X Cameras so much because they remind me of these cameras.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Ritchie Roesch · April 2

        Yes! For me, Fujifilm X cameras are the closest to film out of digital. Digital convenience with an analog soul, perhaps?

        Like

  5. Francis.R. · April 2

    haha very funny xP

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Mark Crable · April 2

    Very nice recipe. April fool’s aside, I agree with you 100% that there is something about film that digital just can’t replicate. One of the reasons I switched to Fuji is they come close to getting that film look and feel. I shot mostly Tri-X, because I had access to a darkroom at school and could develop and print all the photos I took. There’s just something magical about seeing that photo come to life in the darkroom. I also shot color reversal film, Velvia, Kodachrome, and Ektachrome, loved those slides. Anyway, sorry for going off topic, love your film simulations, they take my back to another time, thank you and keep them coming.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ritchie Roesch · April 2

      I really wish that I had the patience and budget for film. Thankfully Fujifilm cameras gives me something “film-like” (or at least close enough to it) that I can reap the conveniences of digital while retaining an analog spirit. I will probably someday shoot more film, just because I love it. Thank you for the comment!

      Like

      • Mark Crable · April 3

        I keep thinking would like to have a darkroom, but I begin to think how much more convenient digital is to shoot and process. Then I look at all the film cameras and rolls of film I have just begging to be shot and think what a waste, back and forth, back and forth. Who knows, maybe someday.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Ritchie Roesch · April 3

        I have an enlarger and chemicals and such, but no space or budget to set it up. I keep telling myself “someday” as well.

        Like

  7. walker · April 3

    yay! well done, sir!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. eclectachrome · 14 Days Ago

    ha! happy april fools!!

    Like

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