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Should I push 500T 7229 and 7219?

Montica Pes

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Hello and thank you for any help in advance.


I shot my first couple of rolls of 16mm yesterday (Vision 2 and Vision 3 500T in a 16mm Arri from the 60s). To help you understand where I'm coming from with this question, I shoot digital regularly and also 35mm film stills, which I develop. Also, all the tools I was working with yesterday are ancient--finicky in the working, but working.


My hope for the two different shorts are medium to high contrast with fine grain and lots of saturation. Here's my problem: I need to know whether to tell Fotokem to push the film a stop or two. Both shorts should take place in a darkened apartment with one practical light suggested as the only light source and a moment where I shoot a darkened room with "moonlight" spilling in--a 250 Lowell light with CTB through a set of blinds. As we were getting readings from an ancient Spectra light meter, the reading kept coming up with a 2.0 on the key side and a 1.0 on the dark of my subjects. The camera's lenses would only open up to a 2f. I was told to overexpose by a stop, but I kept taking a reflected reading using my Canon 7D and getting the light that I wanted--same reading but the light looked right. I exposed for the 2.0f through the entire shoot, not overexposing at all. Also, that means the darks are gonna be DARK.


But I'm concerned at this point. Plus, I may not be understanding a "dense" negative. In still film processing, you can only expose the negative once. If I didn't expose for details in the darks, then there really isn't an amount of pushing I can do in the developing that is gonna make up for that after I develop my negative.


Should I have exposed for the darks, which would have made the scene look like a well lit daytime scene and then pulled back? (These are shots I took with my 7D with the same settings dialed into what I was dialing into the Arriflex.


The performances were so good yesterday, I really want this to turn out and I have to give instructions to the lab tomorrow. Any help is much appreciated.


Thank you in advance!





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So ur saying the shoot below taken on the 7d were exactly the same settings as the arriflex? If so then your okay vision 3 has 14 stops of dynamic range meaning you could dig deeper into the darks then you could on your 7d and still preserve details.


Are you making a print or scan.

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I think he's saying you'll have more to work in post with than in the digital world without pushing on the developing side.


I wouldn't push, if the film matches your still you'll be fine and will not add any extra grain to your final product.


Let us know what happens

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I would not push it either, I think you will be surprised how much shadow detail the stock retains, also a push is more like a gamma change than an overall lift and you might not like the grain in a push +2 with '29 stock. There will be allot of room to bring out the shadow detail in a scan especially with a 2K data scan.



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Another route would be to use more light and have the colorist match your 7D sample. In other words, keep the ratio of lighting between the different lights the same, just increase the amount. Then in transfer say you want it to look like "this" and provide your 7D photo. That way you'll have less grain in 16mm and more sharpness.


Colorists tell me all the time that it is easy to remove light in post, difficult to add light.

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  • 2 weeks later...

You'll be absolutely fine :)


Remember, like Rob said, pushing film does far less to effect the shadow detail you "increase" and does much more to the overall contrast and grain. Push if you want high contrast and extra grain, not to actually increase the level of exposure you give the neg. If you underexposed anything less than 2 stops, I think you'll be blown away by how much shadow detail you still have to play with in the telecine/scan, and if you exposed normally (as your 7D indicated) you'll be absolutely great!

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