Analog Friday #2 - High Sensitivity (Portra 800)

by Piotr Matura June. 09, 2019 260 views

It is Sunday today, I know - but even though I really wanted to publish this earlier, I didn't have time to do it. So please, let's pretend its still Friday ;)

I really like trying new stocks of film. Unfortunately it is a fact that year after year manufacturers discontinue another stocks and "shrink" their offer. Despite that, there are still many kinds of film out there to be bought new and many discontinued ones offered by people that "stocked up" before one or another film became unavailable.

Not long ago I found myself in need for a film that I will be able to work with limited light available. Let's say that I want to photograph an event indoors and I want something reliable and also allowing to work without tripod.

After some reading I came to conclusion that Kodak Portra 800 is my best bet. At ISO 800 it is 4 times faster than your "regular" 200 film, which is exactly what I wanted. It is also supposed to have really fine grain, natural colours (especially skin tones) and cope really well even if underexposed.

I wanted to test it out and see how it works before the event I want to photograph, so I bought one roll, loaded it into my Minolta XD7 with 50mm f1.7 lens and took in on a weekend trip to Wrocław (which I mentioned and shared some photos before), because I suspected I will have plenty opportunities to do photos in low light. I am happy with the results and will use this film more. Below I share some photos (all shot from hand), this time a little bigger set than before :)

I started with some late afternoon shots. Colours came out rather nice.

Next, some interior photos of Casa de la Musica. It is a Cuban bar/dance club in Wrocław Main Square. Great vibe, drinks and music ;) Focus is a bit off, I tried my best, but there was very little light.

Later we had a nice nighttime walk around Main Square

Violinis playing on a electric violin with illuminated bow. It was very nice performance.

Violinis playing on a electric violin with illuminated bow. It was very nice performance.

Old Town Hall in the Main Square. In front there is a small windmill, which was a food stand - there was St Johns Fair (Jarmark Świętojański) taking place at the time we were here. It is a month-long fair ending at the beginning of Summer. There were multiple stands with regional food and souvenirs.

Old Town Hall in the Main Square. In front there is a small windmill, which was a food stand - there was St Johns Fair (Jarmark Świętojański) taking place at the time we were here. It is a month-long fair ending at the beginning of Summer. There were multiple stands with regional food and souvenirs.

Next day, I took some photos on Ostrów Tumski, which is the of oldest part of the whole city. In old times it was an island on the river Odra, which goes trough the city. Now it is no longer an island, but name remains (ostrów means "island" in old Polish). It has many old buildings and structures, but the most magnificient is Cathedral of St. John the Baptist, a monumental church with two towers and beautiful interior.

Two towers of St John the Baptist's Cathedral. It is enormous, looking over the entire part of the city

Two towers of St John the Baptist's Cathedral. It is enormous, looking over the entire part of the city

Cobbled street with numerous town houses, leading to the Cathedral (which is behind the camera)

Cobbled street with numerous town houses, leading to the Cathedral (which is behind the camera)

Little street circling the cathedral on the left side and small chapel of the Cathedral itself

Little street circling the cathedral on the left side and small chapel of the Cathedral itself

Main nave of the cathedral, with altar and big stained glass window at the end.

Main nave of the cathedral, with altar and big stained glass window at the end.

Stained glass window in the cathedral transept. Almost all of the windows in cathedral are stained glass, and each of them is beautiful.

Stained glass window in the cathedral transept. Almost all of the windows in cathedral are stained glass, and each of them is beautiful.

Small altar at the side of cathedral's sanctuary

Small altar at the side of cathedral's sanctuary

The following evening, we took another walk to and around Main Square. It is very beautiful, with lot of nice places to sit and eat or drink - you really can't get enough of it.

Nicely illuminated fountain on Oławska Street, on the way to the Main Square

Nicely illuminated fountain on Oławska Street, on the way to the Main Square

I really like the looks of this building in the evening, with the reflections and street lights making it look like this

I really like the looks of this building in the evening, with the reflections and street lights making it look like this

Restaurant "gardens" on the Main Square

Restaurant "gardens" on the Main Square

Old, 5-story department store "Phoenix" in the Main Square

Old, 5-story department store "Phoenix" in the Main Square

Last photo is of an decorative wall in the underpass near our hotel. It commemorates year 2016, when Wrocław was European Capital of Culture, and it there the word "hello" on it in multiple languages. The city is indeed very welcoming, with great athmosphere, rich history, multiple landmarks and places to go and see. I was there multiple times and still want to go another time. I would recommend coming here to anyone, I'm sure you would enjoy it ;)

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