Greek Summer 2020 with a Leica M6 and different film stocks

When we left the plane in Thessaloniki a couple of weeks ago we had to make a  COVID 19 test. Luckily the result was negative, so we left for the Greek island of Samothraki 10 days later after staying at my sisters house. In my baggage: a Leica M6 with a 50mm Summarit 2.4 lens, which I had purchased maybe two days before the flight. I’d decided to bring just the film camera with me, because I wanted to try different color film stocks for a project in the future. These film stocks were:  Fuji Vevia 100, Fuji 400H Pro, Kodak Portra 160 and Fuji Superia 400. Which one would give me the most pleasant results ?  Well, when I downloaded the medium-sized scans, the fabulous team of the Spanish film lab Carmencita had sent me, I really was surprised in many ways.

First of all: Obviously I had used a long expired Fuji Velvia Film and I could not imagine in advance, what interesting explosion of colors would be the consequence of my mistake 😉

Second: I really liked the results of the rather cheap consumer film Fuji Superia X-tra 400 the most. The brownish, earthy, yet punchy colors –  the strong reds and greens, the cool and deep blue of the sea – for me this is the ideal film stock for a sun-bathed Greek island.

Third:  the Fuji 400 H Pro -although an expensive film often used be professional Landscape- and Portrait-photographers did not impress me very much. Yes, I know, it wad been cloudy on the day I had used that film. But still: In my eyes the Fuji 400 Pro is a very subtle, very ‚true-to-life‘ film stock, but also  rather boring in a lot of circumstances.

Fourth: Well, truth to be told, this is not a surprise. The warm, yellowish color cast of Kodak’s flagship film stock Portra 160 and it’s fine grain are gorgeous. What’s interesting for me: I especially like the warmth it gives to the  greens, the branches and trees. As if life is an  ongoing summer afternoon. Almost too beautiful to be true…

Please write, if you have similar or different opinions towards the film stocks I mentioned.

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