5 frames with...

5 Frames with Kodak Ektar, My Dream Film, on the Nikon F3 – by Tiffany Perez

June 27, 2019

I am not one plagued by Gear Aquisition Syndrome (aka G.A.S.) per se since I have some solid cameras in my arsenal that I am happy with. What I have been in search of is the ideal film stock that I would feel nothing but joy while shooting it. While in search for this film stock, I have gone from the commercial grade to the professional grade, jumped from brand to brand, and tested different film speeds as well. Being an amateur photographer and relatively new to the game helped since I had no prejudice or “loyalty” so to speak to any film in particular. It was just a matter of trial and error.

The Gear

After several months of going through so many rolls of film, I think I have found my ideal dream film stock in…..drumroll, please…KODAK EKTAR 100! To seriously test most of the film stocks I use my most reliable camera, the Nikon F3. This camera is the “extension of my eye” stereotype. I know what will come out of this camera in terms of the framing and the scene. The film stock is all that is changing my photos with different color renditions and grain. With all this in my bag, I took off to shoot!

The Scene

For the location, I wanted to pick a place with a wide variety of lighting and color. I had heard that Ektar had a good amount of saturation and retained colors really well. I also wanted to photograph a place that was familiar to me as well as unfamiliar. By this, I mean a location that I had never fully explored.

With all this in mind, I decided to venture around California State University, Fullerton (CSUF), the university I spent 4 *cough 5 cough* years of my life. CSUF has several buildings on campus with most being built at different times in the college’s history. No two buildings really look alike. On the contrary, each building truly has its own unique features and character.

Like most college students, I liked to stay in mostly one area on campus and hadn’t gone around campus too much. It has been about 4 years since I was on campus for an extended amount of time. Going around campus with my camera felt almost like being there for the first time all over again.

Shots Fired

Skylight View

Berry Bush

Mihaylo Hall

Softer Side of Ektar

Mr. Mihaylo

Conclusion

I can’t say enough about this film stock. It had the right amount of saturation to bring out the sky and plants. But it also rendered neutral colors of statues and walls well in all my photos. I love the grain in my black and white photos but not so much in color. This film stock has such a fine grain that it looks almost 3D to me. It honestly reminds me of slide film with how the color renders.

Being in California where the sun shines more often than not, a 100-speed film is ideal for most situations. Flowers, art and so many colors are all around me. Ektar 100 is my ideal film stock for my future special moments. Maybe not my everyday film due to the price but I will definitely be keeping at least one roll in my bag from now on.

I will still be testing out plenty of other film stocks to see the effects they have on my photos. If you want to see more of those, please check out any of my previous posts or visit my Instagram.

Thanks for reading this article. Please leave any comments, questions or random bursts of excitement in the comment section and I will talk to you all again soon!

Tiffany Perez
The Drive-By Film Shooter

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18 Comments

  • Reply
    CLARE HENNESSEY
    June 27, 2019 at 10:36 am

    Lovely images Tiffany, thank you for sharing them.

    • Reply
      Tiffany Perez
      June 27, 2019 at 4:53 pm

      Thank you for taking the time to read this article =)

  • Reply
    Krishna Kumar
    June 27, 2019 at 1:47 pm

    Mr.Mihaylo …
    Yes. I totally agree with you on Kodak Ektar Film and consider it to be one of the great emulsions made by Kodak.
    Everything was just right with this film and it always gave me very good results each time roll after roll especially of wedding photographs which in India are very colourful and people centric …
    Really a great film made by Kodak …
    Thank you for your wonderful article on the subject …!

    • Reply
      Tiffany Perez
      June 27, 2019 at 4:52 pm

      Thank you for reading! I would love to see some of your photos! India is definitely well sooted for that film stock I would imagine with the way it renders colors. So vivid.

  • Reply
    Lori Brooks
    June 27, 2019 at 4:41 pm

    Ektar 100 is a great film. I’ve never shot it in 135 though, only 120

    • Reply
      Tiffany Perez
      June 27, 2019 at 4:51 pm

      I don’t have a medium format camera yet but I am looking forward to running a roll of Ektar through one once I make that leap! Thanks for reading.

  • Reply
    Huss
    June 27, 2019 at 5:49 pm

    Love the skylight shot.

    • Reply
      Tiffany Perez
      June 27, 2019 at 6:12 pm

      Thank you so much! =)

  • Reply
    Kevin
    June 27, 2019 at 7:22 pm

    still Ektar 100 is my favorite color film. all photos looking great!!

  • Reply
    Joseph L Rockne
    June 28, 2019 at 2:39 am

    Ektar is magic.

  • Reply
    eric
    June 28, 2019 at 10:15 am

    When I see your photograph I really think that digital is not better than film;-)

    • Reply
      Tiffany Perez
      June 28, 2019 at 2:17 pm

      Why thank you. That is such a compliment. Thanks for reading 😃

  • Reply
    Siddharghya Mukherjee
    June 28, 2019 at 9:18 pm

    Beautiful colours

    • Reply
      Tiffany Perez
      July 3, 2019 at 1:28 am

      Thank you!

  • Reply
    Sroyon
    June 29, 2019 at 3:19 pm

    Skylight is my favourite too 🙂 Question: have you shot portraits with Ektar, and if so, what is your impression? If you’re interested, I wrote a short piece about Ektar here.

    • Reply
      Tiffany Perez
      July 3, 2019 at 1:28 am

      I have shot some portraits on Ektar. I find that it renders some skin tones a bit yellow if there is a lot of light on the person’s face but if everything is even then it turns out pretty good. Thanks for reading and thanks for the link!

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