Tag: instant film

Like, Square, Man!

Pardon the outdated slang.

October is birthday month, for which I was well feted and well fed. And I got an Instax SP-3 printer. It’s rather cool. It prints out square format images using the FujiFilm Instax Square film. There are no memory card slots, so it is all wireless. There is an app for both Apple and Android phones called Instax Share. It works quite easily as well as lets you play around with your image. FujiFilm cameras with wireless connectivity in their menus, specifically for the Instax, also work. It is also easy to do, and there are videos on YouTube (of course!) showing you how to use the Instax SP-3 with your phone and camera. I’ll let you delve into that if you are interested.

Instax SP-3 Printer

I printed out 3 images from both my phone and from X100V. Seamless interface, really. The hardest thing was reading the teeny, tiny serial numbers on the bottom of the SP-3 to link it to the camera. The phone just found it and ID’d it readily, bringing up the actual serial number.

The above is a SOC image from the X100V. I chose it because I wanted to see how a true B&W object taken with color could look. With in-camera and in-phone editing, you can make a monochrome image, and this little color printer will print monochrome. Yay!

I wanted to see the details in the trees here as well as to catch the range of colors that trees and plants give. I pushed the saturation using the Instax phone app. Not displeased by the results.

I just printed this one because I liked it, as well as to see how the printer renders reds.

Instax SQ6 Camera

Besides the printer, the Instax SQ6 instant camera came along for the ride. It has been out for a bit, but the reason it was chosen is because it is the most feature rich of the Instax square cameras.  You can also get it in different colors – I have the Graphite Grey model.

One of my big complaints about the Instax Wide is the lousy macro system. It’s just poor, and that is that. I never succeed, and really don’t like to spend a lot of time, film, and money doing something that proves worthless each time. However, the SQ6 does really well in this arena. The image above doesn’t really have the appearance of a macro – it’s really a close up. The viewfinder has some weird little thingies in the viewfinder, like a range finder, and you move in close to your subject, being sure to put it in the lower left corner of the viewfinder. The coffee cup was my main subject, and in the end your close-up object is fairly well centered. I will practice with that feature of the camera more.

One thing that the Instax Wide doesn’t have is a flash suppression. I use gaffer’s tape over it so I don’t get it. There are light and dark adjustments on the Instax Wide, and these same adjustments are found on the SQ6. There is also a flash suppression button on the SQ6. The above image is with the flash turned off.

Here, the flash is on, on auto mode, and the colors are good, the composition relatively sharp.

Thoughts

Altogether, no complaints about either printer, camera, or film. The nice thing is the square format, which is something I really enjoy working with in both analog and digital photography. The wireless technology of the printer is a real kick, and the its small footprint means it is easily portable. The camera has a good set of features that improve the ease of using it as well as allowing the photog(rapher) just the right amount of control to succeed. The printer is better for “good” images in someways than the camera as the resolution of a digital photo is going to be inherently better than that of the SQ6, but both fill niches for me.

Yeah, good presents to get and give!

Instax Afternoon

This afternoon I finally got out for a walk – the weather was not in the high 90s by 10 a.m. It felt so good to be outdoors after nearly 6 weeks inside or in the shade, trying to keep from melting. In general, heat doesn’t bother me, but exercising and sweating in such temperatures gets to me, and it seems this year has been particularly intense. The only walks seem to occur at night, once the sun has gone down and the sidewalks quit sizzling. Our air conditioning ran non-stop a few days in a row, which is unusual for us, but that gives you a sense of the heat – but at least our humidity is relatively low, unlike the southeast.

I decided to play with my Instax Wide by FujiFilm. Normally I just take a picture here and there with my instant cameras but thought it would be fun to use it as the camera to record today’s wanderings. Thus, in no particular order, a few scenes from my afternoon’s perambulation.  Click on an image to move through the gallery.

Through the Window

Before I got the idea of having the DH print a flash cover for the Instax Wide 300, I took a picture of the studio. With flash, everything in the foreground was visible and the picture was rubbish. It had that classic flash-look so common in photos of yore. So, I covered the flash with my hand as I took the picture. The evidence of not needing the flash all the time is evident here.

Someone sez I should get the Lomo wide . . . 😉

Late Afternoon

Another instant photo taken with the Instax Wide 300.  More monochrome film (why don’t they just say “black and white”?).  No flash, and no flash cover.  Instead I judiciously placed the center of the lens – there is a circle you can use to set up your image – on the bright left corner of the couch.  Here it is, straight from the camera’s whatever.  This one I like.

Thingiverse Flash Cover for the Instax Wide 300

If you use the Instax Wide 300 by Fuji, you know that it has a flash that won’t be turned off.  As a result, flash goes off when you don’t want it and can over expose your picture and waste film.  Instax film doesn’t cost an arm and a leg like the Polaroid film does, but it still is annoying to not have control over that darned flash.

Enter Thingiverse, the world of free patterns for 3D printers.  My husband has one and makes some really cool things.  I looked, sought, and found a cover for the 300 Wide’s flash.  You can find it here:  https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:2788611 – and it works really well!  From the site, this is what things look like – screen dump of the cover.  Notice it has sticky foam tape or something to help keep it on the camera itself.  It helps to keep the cover from sliding away from the flash as you move the camera.  I don’t have any foam tape, but made sure the flash was covered, and it worked out nicely, as you will see below.

This is how it looks on the camera itself – again, pictures are from the Thingiverse site – click on the picture to enlarge it.

Notes from the Thingiverse site for the flash cover mention that if you make one in black, it shuts out a lot of light; a white one works more as a diffuser. My husband had hot pink set up on his printer, I had black and white film in the Instax, and I think the pink could have acted as a sort of red filter. Dunno. As we have a lot of different colors for the 3D printer, guess who is going to try them all out once they are printed?

Here are the two pictures taken a couple of minutes apart to check out the flash cover. The first one is without the flash cover. I shot this out the studio window around 8:30 this morning, facing east, where the sun comes up. (I always have to say to myself, “And the sun sank slowly in the west” to remember which direction it rises – oh, well!) Pow! The flash went off.

And now, with my hot pink, newly printed flash cover, here is approximately the same image with the diffuser on.

Once more, the flash flashed, but was not flashing all over things. And it produced a rather pleasantly darker picture. Because the film is black and white, I expect the picture is not picking up the finer gradations of color it could. The window is blown out. But does it matter? I don’t think so. I am curious to see what will happen with color film, which I will load up when I finish this black and white.

I cannot say enough good things about Thingiverse. If you have a 3D printer or know someone who will print for you, not only can you find this flash cover, but also other cool photography stuff, like film uptake spools, pinhole cameras for 35mm and 120 (I have one yet to be tested out), 35-to-120 adapters, and who knows what else. Totally cool stuff if you like to play around, which I do, and certainly does Mr. D.

Toys! Toys! Toys!

Instax Gratification – Wide

It has been absolutely perfect weather around here – 72F, clear skies, and just spring-moving-into-summer!

On a day like this, it is silly not to pick up your butt, pick up your camera, and get out of the house. Today I loaded up the Instax Wide 300, and meandered through the neighboring college campus.

It is deserted. Consequently, as with elsewhere, wildlife is taking over.

Birds, squirrels, crows, rattle snakes, bunnies, and even coyotes.  Crows were everywhere.

The wilder parts of the campus are overgrown with mustard and fennel.

It was great to feel a bit lost in the wild, but I also kept a sharp eye out for rattlers – not something you want to run into.

Tomorrow I think I’ll head out to the local creek.

Instax Gratification – Mini 90

I have been craving a film fix. Yeah, I can go out with a film camera loaded with film – but nowhere nearby is currently processing film! I’ve determined the next Big Project is to master black and white processing at home – really getting it down – and then perhaps some color. Maybe even slide. So, to fill that craving, I dug out my box of Instax cameras (Mini 90 and Wide 300). The Mini was loaded, so I took a few using it.

Just outside the door to the Dog Free Zone – wine red dahlias and some bulb I cannot remember …

Shadows of the picnic table in the late afternoon.

Vining petunias in a lovely pink.

And finally, as the daylight fades, the banana and lemons on the granite countertop.

Oh, yeah!