I've been curious for a while ...
It's amazing to see EZ400 be used to capture a huge variety of scenes. For this selection, we head into the mountains with Ben Adams, a photographer who captures the serenity and strength of the French and Swiss Alps.
I always considered EZ400 best suited for street photography, adding a nice charm and texture to the scenes that city folk encounter on a daily basis. Despite this thought, I always wondered what beautiful landscapes would look like on the strong classic grain of EZ400. Well now I have an answer.
Better than I could've imagined ...
I am so glad that I sent Ben a few rolls to try out -- his output is stunning. He managed to use the best qualities of EZ400 to their utmost potential. The grain, the glow, the contrast - it's all here. See Ben's flickr upload for full resolution viewing.
The grain, especially in the highlights, looks beautiful. It's present but tame, and really makes you feel like you've been transported back in time. It lends a tad of sharpness to the sharp corners of the mountains, but is subtle enough to live within the soft fog and puffy clouds.
And the glow! I was curious how this landscape would manage with the tendency of EZ400 to glow due to strong highlights. Ben's images invite this glow and allow it to become part of the various shades of gray. If anything, the glow helped give life to the fog as it hovers gently over the luscious valley landscape.
A little bit about Ben
I've been a fan of Ben's work for a while. He's lucky enough to live in such a beautiful part of the world, and smart enough to take full advantage of it. He told me "I got into film photography back in 2013 when I picked up my first camera, a Minolta x700. I actually wanted to get into digital photography but at the time was totally skint, so I decided to go down the film route. Film and film cameras were cheap back then." Lucky for us he decided to jump into film - digital is obviously great, but you already know where we stand. Ben works locally, managing and operating rental properties. This gives him great flexibility and opportunity to engage with the surrounding landscape as much as possible. Like most of us, he considers himself a hobbyist despite his clear talent. Ben says "Photography is still just hobby for me, and a way to express myself artistically. I simply shoot because I enjoy it. I also enjoy the technical side of the dark room and now being able to combine that with hybrid digital workflows definitely adds another layer of creative enjoyment to the process." I resonate so much with Ben's statement - above all we do photography because we enjoy it. That's the only reason anyone needs.
Here's his take on his excursion using EZ400:
"The images were shot in Lauterbrunnen, Switzerland (Swiss alps). Some on the roll also shot in my local town (Chamonix), long exposure shot of the waterfall, this is just near my house, about 5 min walk."
"A few photos from my first roll of New Classic EZ400. A good film with a classic grain structure and wide exposure latitude. The photos were made with my Nikon FM2, 40mm Voigtlander Ultron and 28mm Nikkor 2.8 AIS. The film was rated at 200 ASA and mostly metered by under exposing the deepest shadows at -1 ev. I'd say that with such pronounced grain it wouldn't be your typical choice for landscapes, but the images had a character that was hard to dislike. A great walk around film for general purpose photography." All images were lab developed.
Images in the gallery below are cropped - click to see full image.
Ben's results have inspired me to use some EZ400 on my upcoming trip. I will be hiking and enjoy Wales' best routes along the coast, traversing through hills and beaches. I hope my results are half as good as Ben's. At least I know if my photos are terrible, its because of me and not the EZ400. Wish me luck! 🤟🏽