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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2002

    Question Need Help with 35mm Prints

    There have been many discussions on this forum about prints (and I have participated in some of them). Lots of discussions about how hard it is to get a good print - how difficult it is to find a good lab - how difficult it is to find a lab that doesn't make "adjustments" to your prints - and so on. I will shoot a roll of film, and only a few turn out the way I want them to. I am confused about what is most important: the exposure? the film? the shutter speed? the focus? the time of day (lighting)? I have a negative that is one of the few that turned out good on a photo shoot in Canada. I don't care who prints it: Wal-Mart, Walgreen, Epperson Photo, etc. it always turns out beautiful. Why is that? What can I do to duplicate this situation? What is it about this one negative on that roll of film that makes it so special? I realize this is a difficult question, and I am not providing concrete facts and data, but maybe there are some good thoughts out there about this. Comments anyone?

  2. #2
    has-been... another view's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Rockford, IL
    I'm going to guess that there's no tricky lighting in that shot. I'm sure it's a great shot - but things like back lighting, highlights, or other high contrast situations cause the most problems in my experience. Post a scan of it, that might help.

    Everyone will probably have a different answer here, but the film processing "should" be the same wherever you go because it's all C41 process. In reality, some places are better than others, but the bigger difference is printing. Shoot a night shot or a silhouette or shoot a back-lit subject and look at the negative to be sure the exposure is good. Then take the negative to three (or ten) different places and all the prints will probably all look different.

    In my experience, finding the best film and lab combination is the secret. If you want consistent results, you'll have a harder time at a one-hour lab. Get to know a place and see what films they recommend. Become a regular customer and they'll probably do their best to help you - if not, try somewhere else.

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