Q: I would like to use color filters to enhance my Kodacolor prints, such as: an orange or red tint for sunset scenes; a greenish tint for country landscapes; a bluish tint for cloudy slies and other filters for different pictures. I would appreciate any suggestions regarding the type and density of the filters required for such uses. A: One has to be careful in the use of filters for color enhancement as it's easy to overcorrect so that the subtle tones are lost and the entire picture has a monochromatic cast. It's far better to shoot the landscape with proper, natural lighting to capture the full range of colors.
There are special color correction filters which will help balance certain films to the existing light. They range from a dark to light blue and from a deep to a very light shade of orange. These filters are used for the following purposes: 80A -- A deep blue filter that corrects daylight film to tungsten shooting. 80B -- A slightly lighter blue that can be used with daylight film under photoflood lighting. 82A -- A light blue that corrects Type A film to gungsten light balance. 82B -- A light blue that adds more coolness than the 82A and can be used at sunrise and sunset to reduce the excess red. 85B -- A deep orange that converts Type B, tungsten, film to daylight shooting. 81A -- A light orange to convert Type B film for photoflood lighting. 81B -- A light orange that adds more warmth than an 81A. Both the 81A and the 81B are used to reduce excess blue in the lighting.
There are many other colors of filters available which are chiefly used by pros to make exact color changes. These filters are expensive and are not practical for the average snapshooting. If you are really interested in using a variety of filters, then you should look at one of the filter systems such as Ambico. The filters have a customized adapter that screws onto the lens. The filters then can be changed by inserting them into the channel of the adapter. These "system" filters are available in every possible color and effect. You can see them in your camera store or write for a catalogue to: Ambico, Inc., 101 Horton Avenue, Lynbrook, N.Y. 11563. Q: I have just purchased a 35mm camera and would like to know the best film to use. So far, I'm using Kodacolor II, ISO 100 negative color film for prints and Kodachrome 64 for slides. What other films should I use and when? A: You have chosen the two most popular emulsions that will take care of average film needs, but there are other kinds of film for specific uses that can add to your picture taking.
The new fast ISA/ASA 400 films are useful in low-light and in fast action, while the Type B 160 indoor tungsten Ektachrome film is handy for indoor shots with tungsten lighting and theater shooting. Then there's the Professional Kodachrome type A for use with photoflood lights. Each film has certain characteristics and a specific use.
The slower ASA-rated films, whether color transparency, color negative or black and white give the best results under normal lighting conditions. They have a finer grain structure (virtually none on Kodachrome and b&w Panatomic X) resulting in a sharper image with better clarity and tone contrast. The fast films have more grain resulting in a less contrasty image and softer definition.
There are many brands of film available besides the well-known Kodak names. Each has slightly different characteristics. The important thing to remember is that they all use the same kind of development, E-6 for the slide films and C-41 for the negative color (the exception is Kodachrome which uses K-14). The popular brand films such as Thrifty, Savon and Sears are all manufactured by 3 M, Fuji or Sakura and are basically the same emulsion.
There's no such thing as an all-purpose film that give the best results under all conditions. The best way to choose film for general shooting is to experiment and see which one answers your needs. Once you have determined your favorite film, then stick to it so that you learn all of its characteristics. (This is the way pros do it, so that they can get predictable pictures.)
If you're not overly particular, then settle for the popular film that satisfies and can be easily developed and printed by your local lab. If you're only shooting for the family album and wallet-size prints, it really doesn't matter which competitive film you use, but when you want big enlargements or super-sharp slides or are faced with dim light or unusual types of indoor lighting -- they try the following specific films.
Use Kodachrome 25 for best, or Kodachrome 64, for second best results for slides. For dim light and high speed, Ektachrome 400 and for tungsten indoor lighting, Ektachrome Professional Type B 160.
For prints, the Kodacolor II at ASA 100 is best, but for dim light-high speed, use Kodacolor 400, and if you are shooting with tungsten light, use an 80A correction filter, which changes the 400 ASA to 100. Q: I own a brown Kodak camera which I received free from Kodak 50 years ago when I was 12 years old. It was a special Anniversary model with a gold 50th Anniversary emblem with EKC in the middle and 1880-1890 at the bottom.
It always took very good pictures on 120-size film. Could you tell me its value now? A: The Kodak 50th Anniversary Box Camera, brown with a silver seal (c. 1938), has a listed value of $30 to $35 in the most recent Blue Book Illustrated Price Guide to Collectible Cameras. Too bad that you don't have a Kodak Coquette, Kodak Petite with matching lipstick holder and compact, c. 1931. That's valued at from $300 to $500.