Daily Inspiration #346 by Peter | Prosophos

B&W FILM

Dear Steve,

I’ve noticed an increased interest in black and white photography on your site. I’m not sure if it’s because of the arrival of the new Leica M Monochrom, or because of the multiple Daily Inspiration posts involving film recently. (I’ve contributed to some of those film posts — see: The M3 for Sports? by Prosophos http://www.stevehuffphoto.com/2012/06/08/the-leica-m3-for-kids-sports-by-prosophos/).

Either way, I wanted to share some more B&W film images with the photographic community you’ve built. Although you can arrive at a monochrome image in various ways (I use both digital and film media) there is something special about B&W film and the way that it conveys the essence of those quiet moments in life. I find it very appealing.

The images below were shot on Kodak Tri-X 400, with various Leica film camera bodies using the Leica 50mm Summilux ASPH, Leica 35mm Summicron, or Voigtlander Nokton 40 lenses. I hope you enjoy them.

With kind regards,

Peter | Prosophos.

www.prosophos.com

(see my articles on processing B&W film here.

 Man and his Shadow

Life’s Film Strip 

 –

Laughter

 –

Baby Face

 Black & White Honey

 iPhone3Guys

Grains of Sand 

 Untitled

73 Comments

  1. Wonderful photographs. I’m one of those M3 and Hasselblad 503 users. Nothing compares to them and to the whole process of getting images from them.

    • Really? Why, becaus of the m3s function or form? Or is it all form bu tno function, or maybe it’s function without fnction or form without form.

  2. very touching photos, Peter..
    as ussual I always enjoy your perspective

    Thanks a lot for making all those photos.

  3. Hi Peter, just back from a short trip so a little late seeing this post!!!

    So many beautiful examples of why we shouldn’t neglect film.

    I’d reiterate your point that it doesn’t need to be a choice between film and digital, don’t waste time debating the individual merits of these mediums, embrace them both.

    All the best

    Jason

  4. I’ve got you bookmarked (http://prosophos.com) because I check out your site often. I love Untitled and I love Man in his Shadow.

    Now I feel like I need to catch old people with a shallow depth of field!

    Honestly – thank you for posting.

    Cheers!

    jasse

  5. Hello Peter,
    Love many of your pics. The last one, of the older lady, is simply fabulous. I won’t even try to explain with words. Isn’t that what pictures are all about?
    Dirk

  6. Thanks to Peter my bank account is much less these days. However, I have a nice Leica MP and just purchased some kit to develop my own B&W that I learned off his site!

    • Ahhh Jonny, I too have many people to thank for depleting my bank account, so I’m glad to spread the goodwill, so to speak! :).

  7. There are two sites I visit daily, this one and Prosophos.

    We all know why Steve’s site is so valuable and the photos here speak volumes as to why I visit Prosophos daily as well.

    When I purchased my M9 earlier this year, I was fortunate enough to take an informal walk about class with Peter (Prosophos) in Toronto and he helped open my eyes to many things I hadn’t considered.

    I have since been shooting medium format film on a Holga and recently added a new full format DSLR to my list of options. I have to admit to enjoying tinkering with different rigs.

    In my mind, photography doesn’t get any better than what Peter has given us in these images.Thanks to Peter and Steve for giving me ideas, inspiration and just something great to view.

    All the best,

    Matt

      • Steve,

        You are very kind. What people may not know is that you have always been so very kind to me, right back to the forum days, before your website. The difference now is that you’re in a position of influence, thanks to your very hard work, but you are STILL being generous. What can I say? It speaks to your character, my friend. Thank you.

    • +1, I fully agree with your comment Matt:-). Steve & Peter are both truly inspirational for me as well!

    • Hi Matt!

      Nice to “see” you again. It was my pleasure to take you on that walk-about – you’re a true gentleman. And I can’t thank you enough for writing what you wrote.

  8. The last photograph in this series absolutely stopped me “dead in my tracks”. Just outstanding in every manner. Kudos to you sir for your time, labor, love for photography and in posting your work.

    • Jeff, I must say your comment is quite humbling. I thank *you*, sir, for taking the time to look over the images and to see something good in them.

  9. What a beautiful collection of pictures! I love to shoot film as a complement to shooting digital. I have only done so for roughly two years, but have seen a few films disappear in that time. May we always have this opportunity of variation from the ease and quantity of digital photography!

  10. Spectacular work! Thank you so much for sharing these. They’re all wonderful; the first one is amazing, as is ‘untitled’. As you say, both digital and film are valid capture methods (I too use both regularly); I love film’s simplicity and tones, however.

  11. Sir, like others I’m especially drawn to the first and last photos…then went to your site and was really impressed there as well. Thank you for sharing these and for sharing those on your blog–glad to have “found” you.

  12. Awesome….
    If anyone wishes to have one photo that speaks of oneself in life, this is the type of photo….
    Inspiring work!

    Thanks for sharing.

  13. Peter-

    These images are “THERE” they cannot be any better.
    Wonderful in every way, superb exposure, depth of field, beautifully processed film, and printed to perfection.
    You have such a keen eye and massive talent.

    Thank you for the INSPIRATION.

    Richard U.K.

  14. What can I add? Only to the chorus of congratulations for yet more beautiful pictures, and further support for the idea that, even as digital makes amazing strides in quality (and the cameras get smaller and faster) more and more people are reaching back to pick up their film cameras. It’s neither better nor worse, just different. I love to use both, both there’s no doubt film has more soul for me.

  15. Peter, again, a great submission of your beautiful images! The first and last photo are amazing! And I also love it that there where shot on Tri-X 400:-).

    Cheers, Jeroen

  16. Hi Peter,

    I really enjoy your beautiful, soulful photographs and I encourage everyone here at Steve’s to check out your own site. The won’t be dissapointed!

  17. Peter, beautiful work as per usual! Especially love the last shot, I can almost hear the lady thinking and looking back over her long life.

    I usually shoot Neopan 400 but have a few rolls of Tri-X waiting to be dunked and looking forward to it after viewing these. Btw, do you use an “SC” version of the 40mm? Just wondering how you find it, how close it is to the framelines etc. Been thinking of getting one for a while to use on my M2/M6.

    • I have the Leica 40mm and the Voigtlander 40mm SC. I have used it on my M3 and just assume the frameline for the 40mm is the viewfinder border just outside the outer border of the M3’s thick and bright 50mm frameline. I have an M2R but have not used a 40mm on it because I have good 35mm lenses that I don’t have to guesstimate the framelines for.

  18. thanks for this information, I love shooting in B & W, and the first image very good, and the latest. I have not a Leica but love my nex5n and nex7, use the preset T-max-100, Tri-X 400/T-Max-P3200 in LR4, but nothing is like, I agree there is not substitute for the original W&B films.

    Thank you for this blog, really good.

  19. Simply excellent! The pictures show a real feeling for people and their emotions. Really enjoyed them.

    • It’s the natural feeling of the pix, it’s cool, it’s owesome,, nice keep on shooting!,

  20. Lovely work, with “Man and His Shadow” standing out to me for it’s lifelike composition. I had never really considered that shadows are an area where people and objects meet on equal ground, but your clever use has inspired me to play with this theme. Bravo.

  21. Always enjoy your work Peter and my favourite today is Back & White Honey and the last one Untitled.
    I have a love affair with film as well and just can’t let the M3 go despite the hard work compared to my M9.

    • Thanks Ross. Film is hard work indeed… I sometimes hesitate before shooting with it, because I know the process to a final image will be a long one. It’s seldom disappointing however.

    • “…tell a story with 1 shutter click.” That’s very nice, Bygeorge – I like that. Thank you.

  22. Congrats on a really nice series of shots! B&W film is irreplaceable, if inconvenient. I especially like “Man and his Shadow”, “B&W Honey” (great chiaroscuro), and the last, “Untitled”.

  23. Nice blog post, thanks for sharing.

    All of the images are nice, but some are just beautiful. And I absolutely agree that there is no replacement for real black & white films (not even the C41 based “imitations”). Even Leica’s Monochrome Leica cannot emulate the true results of various black & white films.

    I find myself drawn towards film more and more. What fascinates me is that film liberates me from the marketing BS of camera vendors, trying to sell a new digital model year after year. I was very prone to this before I intensified my usage of film again. Digital should be the liberation, but it hasn’t been for me. When I take my CLE, XD7 or Hexar AF with a roll of film, I feel liberated, as I need to focus on the picture, not on the abilities of the camera.

  24. Amazing you are one of the people with your earlier posts that made me appreciate film and actually start shooting in film as medium instead of digital. Thank you.

    • Thank you Leonard. I mainly shoot digital, so for me it’s not an either/or proposition, but I can see why some individuals would be happy to choose one over the other.

  25. I rarely comment here (not because I don’t read the blog, but because comments are somehow superfluous). I believe the photograph should speak for itself. That being said, the first image in this Daily Inspiration is absolutely stunning. Once in a while we make a photograph that simply and eloquently speaks volumes and this is absolutely one of those.
    Well Done!

  26. Last one is amazing.
    I myself have just started to dive deeper into black and white film for my Leicas. The other day I developed my first roll of film in my kitchen. All because of these inspiration pages on Steves site 🙂

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