Route 66: Sun n Sand Motel⁠ — Trying Recipes (That Are Not Mine…)

Sun n Sand Motel – Santa Rosa, NM – Fujifilm X-E4 – “Kodak Portra 66”

The possible number of potential Film Simulation Recipes is almost unlimited. For example, on my Fujifilm X-E4, there are 750 different Kelvin White Balance options that could be selected, and 361 unique White Balance Shifts that could be assigned to each of those different Kelvin options, which means that, if all other settings were identical, you could create over 270,000 different recipes just by changing the White Balance and Shift. Granted, many would look extremely similar to others, but they’d be at least a little different. My point is that there can be millions and millions of potential recipes for Fujifilm cameras, particularly the newer cameras which have more JPEG options. I’ve “only” created just under 250 recipes for Fujifilm cameras⁠—I’ve barely scratched the surface!

Some of you have created your own Film Simulation Recipes. A handful of you have even had your recipes included on this website and in the Fuji X Weekly App. I love that you are diving into your camera settings, getting creative, and sharing the results with the community⁠—it’s all so wonderful! I’m very honored to be a part of all this, and to have a front-row seat.

I’ve shared before where you can find many of these Film Simulation Recipes that were created by others (recipes that are not by me), but today I want to point you to some specific ones: “C1 Classic Neg” by Luis Costa (Life, Unintended), “Aged Negative” by Justin Gould (Fuji X Weekly Community Recipes), and “Kodak Portra 66” by Justin Gould (Film.Recipes). Why these ones? They looked particularly interesting to me for the subject that I wanted to use them for.

The photographs in this article were not captured with these recipes, but instead were RAW files reprocessed in-camera to apply the recipes to exposures already captured. I used my Fujifilm X-E4 and Fujinon 27mm lens (originally with my Fujicolor Natura 1600 recipe) to photograph the burnt Sun n Sand motel in Santa Rosa, New Mexico. This hotel first opened along Route 66 in the 1950’s, had major renovations in the late-1990’s, and closed for good in 2013 after a severe storm caused major damaged. Apparently homeless moved in after it closed, and sometime later (although I couldn’t find exactly when) fire damaged much of the property. It seems to be in the process of being demolished, albeit slowly. The Sun n Sand motel has been left in a sad state, and the opportunities to photograph this somewhat-iconic site along The Mother Road are fleeting. I’m glad that I had the opportunity.

C1 Classic Neg by Luis Costa

“Ironically, I think it resembles Slide film much more than Negative film!” ⁠—Luis Costa

Motel Window Reflection – Santa Rosa, NM – Fujifilm X-E4 – “C1 Classic Neg”
Family Units – Santa Rosa, NM – Fujifilm X-E4 – “C1 Classic Neg”
Red Arrow – Santa Rosa, NM – Fujifilm X-E4 – “C1 Classic Neg”

Aged Negative by Justin Gould

“It reminds me of prints I made from 35mm film in the 1980s.”—Justin Gould

Historic Route 66 Motel – Santa Rosa, NM – Fujifilm X-E4 – “Aged Negative”
Burnt Junk in a Bathtub – Santa Rosa, NM – Fujifilm X-E4 – “Aged Negative”
Burnt Door – Santa Rosa, NM – Fujifilm X-E4 – “Aged Negative”

Kodak Portra 66 by Justin Gould

“Some things seem to be made to go together, and in our world of film simulations and recipes, it’s Kodak Portra and fading Americana.” ⁠—Justin Gould

Cheap Desk – Santa Rosa, NM – Fujifilm X-E4 – “Kodak Portra 66”
TV & Chair – Santa Rosa, NM – Fujifilm X-E4 – “Kodak Portra 66”
Oh, Deere! A flat tire – Santa Rosa, NM – Fujifilm X-E4 – “Kodak Portra 66”

If any (or all) of these Film Simulation Recipes look interesting to you, please visit Luis’ and Justin’s websites⁠—they have many more! I haven’t personally used most of them, but there are plenty that look pretty good to me, based off of the sample pictures. I’m sure many of you will appreciate them. If you have the Fuji X Weekly App, tap the circle-with-dots icon at the top-right, and you can manually add these (or any other recipes) into the App, if you want to take them with you on the go. Don’t have the Fuji X Weekly App? Download it for free today!

Taos Pueblo, New Mexico – Part 2: Monochrome


Storm Over Pueblo – Taos, NM – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & 60mm

Part 1 – Color

One thing I found particularly fascinating about the Taos Pueblo is that this historic site is still inhabited. This is a real home to many people. The doors and windows belong to someone. Inside there are living spaces, bedrooms and kitchens. Surrounding the two large pueblos are even more houses. There’s a church. This is a community.

Visiting Taos is like being invited into a stranger’s home. You have the opportunity to see a more intimate side of things, and perhaps come away with a different perspective. What I found in Taos was not what I had pictured in my mind prior to visiting, but something much more interesting. There’s a certain profoundness to this place that’s difficult to put into words.

I appreciate those in Taos for allowing me in, answering my questions and showing hospitality and kindness. Unfortunately, my stay was much too short. I had only a couple of hours to spend at the pueblo, and then it was time to continue down the highway to Santa Fe. I truly hope that the opportunity to return comes sooner than later.


Taos Tourist – Taos, NM – Fujifilm X100F


Jacob’s Ladder – Taos, NM – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & 60mm


Dream Ladder – Taos, NM – Fujifilm X100F


Tree & Shed – Taos, NM – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & 60mm


Bells & Crosses – Taos, NM – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & 60mm


Pueblo Sky – Taos, NM – Fujifilm X100F


Taos & Sky – Taos, NM – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & 60mm


Second Floor Pueblo – Taos, NM – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & 60mm


Pueblo Roof – Taos, NM – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & 60mm


Boxy – Taos, NM – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & 60mm


Taos Pueblo Apartments – Taos, NM – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & 60mm


Storm Approaching Taos – Taos, NM – Fujifilm X100F

Taos Pueblo, New Mexico – Part 1: Color


San Geronimo Cross – Taos, NM – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & 60mm

Ansel Adams’ very first book, Taos Pueblo, was published in 1930. It featured photographs that Adams had captured in the spring of 1929 at Taos Pueblo in New Mexico. He would return to Taos several times on his journeys across the American west. It was while flipping through one of Adams’ books that I first learned of Taos, and for the next twenty years I would dream of one day experiencing the place firsthand.

The Taos Pueblo is the oldest continuously inhabited community in North America, dating back to about 1000 AD. There are actually two pueblos, the north house and south house, that look much the same and are of similar age. It’s amazing how little has changed over the centuries, and it is said that the pueblo appears similar to visitors today as it did to Spanish explorers in 1540.

People still inhabit the Taos Pueblo. It’s like a giant apartment complex. Many of the lower-level units are used as restaurants and shops. You can buy handmade art and trinkets. It’s a neat experience. It does cost money to visit ($16 per person), but I didn’t mind as I’m sure it helps those who live there. Sadly, it appears as though poverty is a common issue at the pueblo.

My family and I only got to spend a couple of hours at the Taos Pueblo. We were just passing through on our way to Santa Fe. It would have been great to spend more time capturing this historic site. There are so many photographic opportunities! Interestingly, and perhaps unfortunately (depending on how you look at it), photographs are for personal use only, and one must obtain prior approval and pay a fee for commercial photography. If I wanted to sell a picture that I captured at the pueblo, well, I can’t, unless I jumped through the appropriate hoops ahead of time. This is something to consider if you are planning a visit, and if I were to spend more time than just a couple of hours at the site I definitely would have done this just in case I captured something special.

I used a Fujifilm X-Pro2 with a Fujinon 60mm lens attached to capture these images. They are all straight-out-of-camera JPEGs using my Kodachrome II film simulation recipe. I hope you enjoy viewing them!


San Geronimo de Taos – Taos, NM – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & 60mm


Taos Cowboy – Taos, NM – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & 60mm


Pueblo Door – Taos, NM – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & 60mm


Red Door – Taos, NM – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & 60mm


Flower Pot – Taos, NM – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & 60mm


Pueblo Peak – Taos, NM – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & 60mm


Pueblo – Taos, NM – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & 60mm


Pueblo de Taos – Taos, NM – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & 60mm


Fallen Fence – Taos, NM – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & 60mm

Part 2 – Monochrome