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Photography Question 
Elizabeth A. Holmes
 

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I just spent an entire day taking the greatest pictures - I thought. I can't tell you how dissapointed I was when I went to the 1hour (I know, I know...but I was so anxious!) Anyway, both rolls have absolutely nothing on them. The manager showed me the negatives and they appeared to be clear. Please tell me it's possible they did "something" wrong and it probably is not my brand new Nikon N65.
Thanks. Ann


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7/7/2002 10:26:34 PM

 
John A. Lind
BetterPhoto Member Since: 9/27/2001
  Ann,

Light turns negative film dark. If they're "clear" they were not exposed to light (or very grossly underexposed). Look at the negative strips again. You should see some very small writing between the sprocket holes and the edge of the film. These are frame numbers and the brand/type of film you were using. It's put there by the film maker when it's manufactured, not the developing lab. Their location is outside the frame you expose with your camera. You may also find some small color bands (cyan, magenta and yellow) along with the writing; this depends on the film manufacturer and type of film. Developed color negative film should also have a slight orange tint to it. This is an "orange mask" that's embedded in the acetate film base itself and is not part of the emulsion layers. It makes color balancing the prints easier.

If you can see these things, the film was properly developed. All color negative film is developed using the "C-41" process (the specification for how to develop it). It's the same exact process regardless of brand, type or film speed. One notable exception is the old Seattle Film Works film which was actually 35mm cinema film cut and loaded into cannisters, but it's not labeled "C-41 Process" either. It's why it had to be returned to them for procesing.

Go back through the instruction book for your N65 and ensure you have set up the camera properly. Walk through it with a friend if possible; someone who has a similar camera. Check all the buttons and controls for anything that you might have put in the wrong position.

Out of curiosity . . .
What exact film were you using and what kinds of photographs were you shooting?

-- John


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7/7/2002 11:59:07 PM

 
Elizabeth A. Holmes   John,
Thank you for your reply.
I was using Kodak Gold 200. All of the picures were outside. I started the day at the beach and caught the sunrise at 6:30. Then I moved on to the park around 8:30, took some cool closeups of some 'shrooms, some very old oak trees, an old house etc., baseball pictures around noon, and then on to the manatees in their natural habitat around 7:30pm. (I swear one of them blew a rasberry at me when I snapped his picture!) Anyway, the lighting varied everywhere between dawn and early evening.
Since I am obviously such a novice, My camera manual is with me everywhere I go. I combed it front to back to try and determine what I could have done wrong, but can't put my finger one it.
I love to experiment and changed the settings all through the day from evening, sports, close up, portraits and even AUTO.
Since I tried so many different things, with such varied degrees of light, I really am confused why at least one picture didn't turn out.
I will look at the negatives again more closely as you suggested.
Thanks again,
Ann


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7/8/2002 9:46:42 AM

 
John A. Lind
BetterPhoto Member Since: 9/27/2001
  Ann,
Thanks . . . wanted to ensure you weren't doing something under highly unusual lighting conditions that could result in gross (near zero) underexposure. The thought of July 4th and an attempt at fireworks photographs crossed my mind; it can sometimes result in near zero film exposure if not done properly.

After you check the negatives to ensure the Kodak's small print near the film edge is there (if it's not there's a film processing problem) and go back through the manual to ensure you've got everything set up properly, it is likely a problem with the camera body.

If everything sounds like it's working when you press the shutter release, it could be the release mechanism for the closing shutter curtain isn't working properly to delay release of the closing (2nd) curtain after the opening (1st) curtain is released. If the opening (1st) and closing (2nd) curtains are released simultaneously, it results in zero film exposure but it can sound as if everything is working correctly. This is just an educated "guess" at one of the things that might be wrong based on the symptoms.

-- John


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7/8/2002 1:12:04 PM

 
Elizabeth A. Holmes   John,

Ahhhh..the mystery is solved (much to my chagrin). I checked the negatives and yes, they were developed properly.
My terminology was misleading. When I said the negatives were clear, I meant there didn't seem to be any images on them. They due have an orange hue and the markings you spoke of. However, as I looked closer, I saw that virtually every frame had a small blurred spot in almost exactly the same place.

Then I checked the shutter curtain...apparently in my excited haste - I must have pushed down on the
curtain slightly bending and pushing up one of the....what do you call them? I'm not sure, so for lack of a better word...one of the curtain panels was out of place. I was able to (very carefully) place it back into position.

I took a half a dozen pictures, just to make sure, and had them developed. They were beautiful!!!

I have learned a most valuable lesson!!

Thank you again for all of your help.

Ann


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7/9/2002 8:58:19 AM

 
John A. Lind
BetterPhoto Member Since: 9/27/2001
  Ann,
Glad it's working now and the shutter was not damaged. :-))

-- John


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7/9/2002 1:42:45 PM

 
Elizabeth A. Holmes   John,
Thanks, me too!! I just submitted my first photo in the Betterphoto Contest.
It's titled "Gracie". If you get a chance, maybe you could take a look at it and let me know what you think?
Ann


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7/9/2002 5:39:21 PM

 
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