I’ve been asked countless times to create a Kodak Gold film simulation recipe. I’ve tried several times to make one, but I couldn’t get it quite right. Last week I was scrolling through Instagram and I saw a picture that I thought at first glance was captured using my Portra 160 recipe. It’s not unusual to see pictures that were captured using my different recipes, as some of them have become quite popular. It was an interesting picture, so I took my time looking at it, and as I did I thought that there was just too much saturation, contrast and grain for it to be my Portra recipe, yet it was still very similar. When I read the description I realized that the picture was captured with actual Kodak Gold 200 film! At that moment I knew that I could create a Gold recipe simply by modifying the Portra recipe.
Kodak Gold, which was introduced in the late-1980’s and is still around today, is a general purpose color negative film. It was originally called Kodacolor VR-G, then Kodacolor Gold, and finally Gold. It replaced Kodacolor VR. While the film has been improved a few times over the years, it still looks pretty much the same today as it did in the 1980’s. The film is prone to color shifts, and results can vary significantly depending on how the picture was shot, developed and printed or scanned.
Even though this Kodak Gold film simulation recipe is very similar to my Portra recipe, it took many experiments to get it right. I tried different combinations of Highlight, Shadow and Color before settling on these settings. I adjusted the white balance shift several times before returning to the same shift as Portra 160. I feel that this recipe is a good facsimile to actual Gold film, although, like all recipes, it will never be exact, as it cannot account for all the variables. It’s pretty close, though, in my opinion. I want to give a special thank-you to Fuji X Weekly reader Piotr Skrzypek for creating the original Portra 160 recipe for X-Trans II, which allowed me to make one for X-Trans III & IV cameras, which in turn made this Kodak Gold 200 recipe possible. This recipe is compatible with X-Trans III & IV cameras.
Dynamic Range: DR-Auto
Noise Reduction: -4
Grain Effect: Strong
Color Chrome Effect: Off
White Balance: Daylight, +4 Red & -5 Blue
ISO: Auto, up to ISO 6400
Exposure Compensation: +2/3 to +1 1/3 (typically)
Example photographs, all camera-made JPEGs using this Kodak Gold 200 film simulation recipe on my Fujifilm X-T30:
See also: Film Simulation Recipe
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