5 frames with...

5 Frames with Kodak Ektachrome E100 in Morocco – by Simon King

March 24, 2019

There were so many things I was worried about when I shot these slides on a recent trip to Morocco. I was using my Leica M6, which I had recently had serviced, but there were a few things still playing up with the camera so I couldn’t be sure that the things I had wanted it serviced for in the first place had actually been dealt with. I had to just hope that my light seals were all tight and my meter accurate, especially considering the low tolerances of working with slide film.

After receiving my slides back however and reviewing them on my light table I was incredibly happy. The images were much better than images I shot on C41 films on the same trip, possibly because I took more care over creating them at each stage – composition, exposure, second thought, and so on.

Reversal film has been it’s own unique learning curve, which reflects the same process I’ve had to go through for my other film photography journeys – first with C41 film, learning how different emulsions look, how to expose for different effects, and then again with black and white films, learning how to get the look I want, making compromises with light availability, pushing and pulling, and so on. With slide film the challenge in London is having enough light, and in Morocco it was dealing with a surplus of light, but also exposing within that narrow margin of correct exposure for he right area of my frame.

You can see in the above image that I have exposed for some of the shadows where the Train Guard is standing in the door, making the upper half blown out in the highlights. This is a compromise I had to make in the moment, deciding that I would rather blow out the highlights than loose the detail in the forground.

All of these frames were incredibly sharp – Ektachrome is able to resolve the fullest detail from the sharp lenses I paired it with. I shot all of these images on either the Zeiss 50mm Planar or Leica 90mm APO, some of the sharpest lenses available on the M system.

The colour is equally impressive, but I was actually surprised with how happy I was by some of the black and white conversions I made for some of the frames – the detail I’m able to resolve from my scans and absolute clarity of the original colour make it really easy to tweak different shades into useable BW images.

The light in Morocco can’t be discredited – it was really special working in those conditions, especially at sunrise and sunset. Ektachrome particularly however gave me results I simply couldn’t get with my C41 films in those same conditions. I’m really looking forward to shooting more with this film moving forward, and will be really excited to share my work!

Thanks for taking the time to have a look at my work. If you’ve enjoyed these slides you might enjoy more of my photography, which can be seen over on my Instagram.

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14 Comments

  • Reply
    Peter
    March 24, 2019 at 11:01 am

    The nomad (?) picture is my favorite. Good job.

    • Reply
      Simon
      March 24, 2019 at 11:22 am

      Thank you!

  • Reply
    Danny
    March 24, 2019 at 12:30 pm

    Great images and write-up. The nomad and the conductor are my favorites – both are National Geographic worthy! Nice work.

    • Reply
      Simon
      March 24, 2019 at 12:33 pm

      Really kind of you to say! Thank you πŸ™‚

  • Reply
    M
    March 24, 2019 at 4:00 pm

    The nomad at dawn (?dusk) is extraordinary. Reminds me of an old Kodachorome magazine cover.

    • Reply
      Simon
      March 24, 2019 at 4:05 pm

      Thank you! It was taken at dusk!
      It did surprise me just how many qualities are shared between Kodachrome and Ektachrome. I’m glad I’m able to experience at least one of the legendary pair!

  • Reply
    Ed
    March 24, 2019 at 4:20 pm

    Simon–

    Was the metering on the Berber nomad’s face? My earlier experience with slide film was indeed a steep learning curve. My head is trapped in negative film.

    • Reply
      Simon
      March 24, 2019 at 6:31 pm

      Metering for that image was more of a hopeful effort than anything specific. It wasn’t a high contrast scene so I wasn’t too worried, just trusted my meter!

  • Reply
    Rasmus
    March 25, 2019 at 9:23 am

    Also interests in the metering! Did you expose straight on or a little under for the subdued look on the image of the man?

    • Reply
      Simon
      March 25, 2019 at 5:44 pm

      The exposure for that shot was dead on according to the meter. I wasn’t going anywhere under or over at all – wouldn’t want to risk it with E6!

  • Reply
    Kate Johnson
    March 25, 2019 at 10:11 pm

    I’m testing E100 now. My first roll results were a bit cold for me, so Now I’m trying a warming filter (I’ve used this with the old E100G). I know that the red rocks in my images should not be blue!

    • Reply
      John Squillace
      March 26, 2019 at 11:34 am

      Hi, Kate – which warming filter do you like best with it – an 81A? Thanks!

  • Reply
    George Appletree
    March 25, 2019 at 11:33 pm

    Is not that shot too greenish, πŸͺ included, or were the sands that color

    • Reply
      Simon
      March 26, 2019 at 4:23 am

      It’s accurate to how I remember the light and scene to look!

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