Impossible Project Color 3.0 Film Test | Rochester NY Instant Photography

Being a frequent shooter of instant "polaroid" film (yes, they still make it!), I had an opportunity to try out Impossible Project's new version 3 color film. I bought a pack and received it in the mail this week, and finally had a chance to test it out today. In this post, I am offering my review and impressions of this new formulation. I shot the pack on a Mamiya Universal Press camera, with a 100/2.8 Sekor lens, and the film loaded in a modded CB-70 back.

In all cases, an image started to appear within 5 minutes, which is an improvement over the Color 2.0 film. The development was "90%" complete in my estimation by about 20 minutes. Only after a good hour or so were the colors and contrast fully set. These scans are all after 1 hour of shooting. Exposure to light during development did not seem to matter. Temperature did, however, with respect to color tone.

All photos were scanned on my Epson v700 flatbed scanner, with the Epson Scan software, and the automatic white balance. The colors and contrast represented are accurate to the prints. All photos except the outside ones were shot at f/2.8.

The first image I shot in natural daylight conditions and held the photo in my armpit immediately after ejecting, for about 10 minutes. This image rendered very warm.

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I had a little camera shake on this one (1/30 sec), and underexposed by maybe 1/2 stop. Same room as the first photo. I let this one develop next to a space heater (not as aggressive as my armpit though)

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This one was also natural daylight, but I left it in the ambient room temperature (about 68-70F / ~20C). The room also happens to be blue, but the colors are rendered a little on the cool, green side.

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Outside on a moderately cloudy January day in Rochester, NY. It was about 35F / 2C outside, and I brought this immediately inside to the room temp (68-70F / ~20C). The unexposed film never cooled to the outside temp, as I went outside, shot and came back in within 2-3 minutes. Highlights are yellowed a bit and the shadows have that greenish tint still. Shot at f/11.

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Same conditions as #4 above.

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This photo of my lovely wife trying out her new hoodie, with our almost-2-year-old baby toddler Elliott in her Tula carrier was overexposed about 1 stop, and warmed in my armpit. Same really warm, yellow tones all around.

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My son Jacob here was posed in the same spot as above, but for this photo (now properly exposed), I set it next to a cool window to develop (maybe about 60F / 15-16C). Notice the green tint in the shadows. The spots on the photo are dust from the scanner, not defects in the print itself.

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For this last shot, I used a Nikon SB-28 flash bounced on the ceiling, triggered with the PC cord. All of the light was provided by the flash, which is daylight balanced. I warmed this one in my armpit as well, yielding that same warm tonality. For reference, the couch is a basic tan color, and my son's shirt is neutral grey.

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Overall, I feel as though this new film did improve on what it was set out to do-- the development time. Specifically the improvements when compared to Color 2.0 are:

  • Development time (I'd ballpark it at a 40% reduction)
  • The physical durability of the emulsion; 2.0 film would show fingerprints or cracks if it was pressed or bent in the first few minutes of development.

The drawbacks compared to color 2.0 are:

  • Color tonality is a step backward from the color 2.0 formulation. The older film had a nicer, neutral balance (when developed in a sufficiently warm spot) and more vibrant reds. Color 3.0 moved further away from what the original Polaroid film looked like
  • This film is still temperature sensitive, and also unlike 2.0 film, shifted color when it was warmer. The 2.0 film had color shifts when developed in cool weather, but was consistent once it was above 70F/20C (my pants pocket or table in my home was sufficient).

I hope IP tweaks the color tonality to be more like the 2.0 film-- then I'll be happy to buy a large batch of it :)

-- Andrew

Favorite Wedding and Senior Portrait Photos of 2015 | Rochester NY Wedding Photographer

As the year draws to a close, it's a good time to share my favorite images (and some brief words why) from 2015. I am definitely looking forward to 2016 as another year of growth and improvement, to bring the best wedding photography and high school senior portraits to my clients in Rochester, NY, western New York and beyond! These photos are presented in no particular order.

Starting off with Alyssa and Sam, I love their playfulness and ease with each other, it's what makes the shot. I also get all gear-nerded out about this shot, having been done on 4x5 film with a camera from the 1950's, using modern strobes and radio triggers.

In the high school where they met. I love incorporating elements of personal stories into the photos, so they have meaning and value to them years from now.

More simple fun with these two.. definitely looking forward to their wedding in 2016!

They love their fur baby, and they love each other more... along with camping and exploring outdoors.. what better way to capture that on a lovely fall day at Letchworth park?

Couldn't pass up the gorgeous fall colors, awesome scenery and a chance to dote on each other a little bit, too.

I also had the chance to document newborn baby Grace's first few days with us, and this tender moment between baby and momma, in her nursery.

I also did some rockin' senior portraits with Brennon, who played hockey for many years at Bill Grey's Iceplex. We got some time on the ice to do some cool stuff (pun intended).

I told him to put some heat on it.. and he did. I enjoy sports shooting and one of the favorites among hockey shooters is the stick bend, which is exactly what I hoped for and got here.

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Shooting instant film (polaroids) for clients is always fun. Brennon and his dad enjoyed this photo, and I'm always happy to give one to them. This is a scan of the negative leftover (they got the print).

This simple moment captured the vibe of the prep phase for Colby at her wedding... her and her makeup artist, and her beautiful dress hanging, waiting for her. The slightly messy room perfectly captures the experience many brides have hurrying to be ready for their marriage to begin.

Colby's good friend holds the dress while her sister helps to tie the back shut. In addition to the lighting, I also like the classic black & white look that the Kodak Tri-X film provided.

Colby's bridesmaids could barely keep it together, it was so sweet. They were just as joyously excited as the bride and groom.

I love this classic, clean, simple portrait of Colby and Kevin.

When I handed her the print (of her and her husband), she cried in joy at having such a great photo of them. The joy on people's faces when they get the print is priceless.. and reinforces for me the value of the tangible, physical print, polaroid or not.

Love this close up portrait of Gina.

These are always big moments for fathers; walking their daughter down the aisle to get married. One of the life moments many will never forget. I love how it captures the grandeur of the Memorial Art Gallery's exterior simultaneously with the grandeur of this moment in their lives.

We snuck around the gallery taking photos.. it was just fitting to take a sneaky photo through one of the sculptures of them sneaking a kiss.

Knowing I think and see differently than many people, I actually appreciate and value moments like these, with all the chaos and busyness going on. With larger bridal parties all getting ready simultaneously, this is a normal scene, and I was glad to have captured all of them in one completely candid photo.

Gorgeous day for a wedding at Bristol Harbour.

Perfect lighting for a strobed portrait like this one.

Hayley and Phil just had to spend some time alone on that berm.. I saw the light on our way out to the spot where I thought we'd do portraits. Always keep an eye out for a great opportunity :)

Christian is killing off his single life... sign ;)

The moment the aunt of the bride sees her walking down the aisle

Her dress was very poofy... and the kids couldn't resist, having to wait for their parents' portraits in the bridal party to finish.

A moment between the bridesmaid mother and daughter as she prepares for her friend's wedding.

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Kate's brother and "man of honor" Steve arrived. With alcohol.

Kate and Dave's reactions to seeing each other as the ceremony starts..

Such a gorgeous nighttime ending to Kate and Dave's wedding. Venus is shining brightly over them on this day

Bright sun and hot weather at a very crowded Chimney Bluffs didn't deter us from making an interesting portrait. This park is one of the favorites of Mitchell and Laura, who both grew up nearby.

I think I got hooked on this Polaroid thing, when upon handing this to Mitchell and Laura, they gushed in excitement.. then the next day both made a phone snapshot of the print their facebook profile pictures. The negative came out beautifully as well, rendering a nice high resolution scan. And, it's a sweet portrait of these two...

I love it when I capture these 'found moments'. Laura and Mitchell love each other very much.. but are also rather private people. To catch these little tender gestures just highlights how they really do feel about each other. Such is the love of childhood sweethearts.

Brandon and Lisa and I had a blast out in the icy snow at Letchworth. This photo just captures how much they really do love each other, and how much fun they are together.

I didn't even have to ask them to kiss...

This boat ride was the first real moment alone on this day that Maggie and James had to enjoy with each other.. the gorgeous light was just the icing on the cake.

James grew up on Keuka lake, and Maggie grew to love him and the lake.. only fitting they got married at the Keuka Yacht Club right on the shores.

I love shooting volleyball, I used to play volleyball, and Melissa here is showing off her middle hitting skills, and I was able to highlight that in a cool way. This is the kind of high school senior portrait I wish I had.

Melissa enjoys this little gelato shop, and was so excited to have seen the photo during the presentation. I was glad to have caught that for her.

All the bridesmaids are attending to Sarah's needs ;)

Sarah and Max enjoying their first dance together. I love their expressions and the lighting.

I encouraged Sarah and Max to out for some "cool portraits" by the beach as the sun set. As soon as they saw the preview on the camera, all of their friends wanted their own awesome photos here.. which I was happy to provide.

Love the timing of this final moment of Tiffany's preparation, with her mom's hand reaching out to make an adjustment.

Every wedding should have the hora dance, even if they're not Jewish or Greek.

So.
Much.
Fun.

If anyone knows Jacob, as I have the fortune of knowing him long before this day... is that Jacob is a pretty reserved guy. And seeing him letting lose like this was a total joy. I hope every groom can enjoy their wedding as much.

Alex and Natalia seeing each other for the first time.. they were both smitten.

And the coolest bridal party photo award goes to...


I also wanted to share the "best of" my personal photos. I enjoy photographing my children having epic fun, and doing routine things too. 2015 started off with some epic snow with an unusually cold and snowy winter in the northeast. We made the best of it with many sledding adventures. Here's my son Jacob getting some sweet air off of a jump on the hill, with my oldest son Evan watching from above.

My youngest son Elliott turned one.

Fresh off their bikes (hence the helmets), the boys play in the yard.

Carrot-eating face, taken on FP-3000b Fuji instant peel-apart polaroid film. Too bad Fuji announced they were ceasing production of this film in 2014.

My son Joshua and I "train hunting" on a nice summer day.

Elliott an my beautiful wife Valarie, who makes many wonderful things happen at our home.

Elliott loves having his brothers launch him high on the trampoline, or "champoleen" as he would say.

We also homeschooled our 3 boys this year, here's Evan working in his workbook.

Although it wasn't until December, I did manage to get a portrait of all 4 of my awesome boys at the same time. They were laughing at the fart jokes their mom was making next to me ;)

And concluding this years' post, this is my youngest Elliott helping Joshua with his chore. I love finding beauty and interestingness in the mundane.

Thank you all for the wonderful year you all showed me and trusted me to document. Here's to an exciting and awesome 2016!

 

-- Andrew

Nicole's Underwater Maternity Portraits | Rochester NY Underwater Portrait Photographer

Nicole and I were both excited to do an underwater maternity portrait session, for a truly unique take on maternity portraits. As the only underwater portrait photographer in Rochester (and probably Western New York), I always enjoy the chance to do creative sessions like these. May you and your little one be blessed, Nicole!

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Thank you for a great session and working together to create these images!

-- Andrew