Edinburgh calling

Discussion in 'Meet and Greet' started by Rob MacKillop, Feb 18, 2012.

  1. Rob MacKillop

    Rob MacKillop Edinburgh Correspondent

    Hi, I'm Rob MacKillop from Edinburgh. I'm knocked out by the contributions to this site, and all the helpful information.
    I am very much an amateur photographer, using a Canon G10 and my Blackberry phone. However, I recently decided to really learn about photography, and have just bought a Pentax K1000, which, I'm told, is a great camera to learn the craft of taking pictures on.

    Sadly I have had nothing but frustration. The first film I put in - I managed to ruin it when unwinding once I'd used up all 36 shots. I seemed to be rewinding for ages, but when I opened the case, the film hadn't rewound at all. Does this mean all the pictures in that film are ruined? I eventually managed to get it rewound after opening and closing the case a couple of times.

    So I took it to the camera shop and asked them to install the film, but not one assistant knew how to do it! So I put in another film myself. But after taking four shots, the film seems to have stopped winding forward. I've watched a YouTube video showing exactly how to install and extract a film from this same camera, and I seem to be doing it right. So, I'm thinking there may be something wrong with the camera itself. There is a shop in town which does repairs on old film cameras, so I'll take it there. I'm beginning to feel better about my G10!

    Anyway, I'm very keen to take photography seriously, and hopefully one day I'll have something worth contributing to this site.


  2. Kev Pugh

    Kev Pugh Well-Known Member

    Good place to join Rob, loads of sound advice to be had and offered, enjoy the forum and welcome..:D
  3. Paul Lange

    Paul Lange Moderator

    Welcome Rob, Sorry to hear about your film disaster. You are correct in thinking that your film is toast although you might be lucky and get some artistic effect such as light leaks and a few images might be intact. Depends on how much of the film you exposed to the light.

    It might be worth rewinding that knackered film back into it's canister and loading it back into the camera and then go through the whole film again and then rewind it with the back of the camera open so you can see if there is a fault with the camera.
  4. Rob MacKillop

    Rob MacKillop Edinburgh Correspondent

    Good idea, Paul. I'll try that.

    Thanks for the welcome.
  5. Hamish Gill

    Hamish Gill Well-Known Member

    Welcome to the forum Rob
    Hopefully we can help with your camera problem!
    I would say you are right in thinking that a k1000 is a good choice of camera to learn on... If its working...

    I would have thought that first film is probably well knackered ... As disheartening as this is, it's just part of the vintage camera/film experience!

    Keep trying with that film, put it in shoot through the shots and try and rewind, if it won't shoot through the shots take it out the camera and try again... If it gets to the end try rewinding it!
    This is a good process to get through with any new (to you) vintage camera!

    Another simple check you can perform
    Take the lens off, open the back, holding it up to the light fire the shutter with it set at 500th, then 60th then 15th ... It is obviously impossible to check the speed of a shutter by eye, but there should be a noticeable difference between these speeds!

    On a bright sunny day the light meter should read 100th of a second when the lens is set to f16 and the iso setting at 100 ISO ... In the winter it might be more like 1/50th or slower ... But knowing that should give you an indication that it at least close to being accurate ...
    You can also check the meter against you canons meter ... Just make sure to zoom the canon lens to a similar field of view as the lens on the film camera and point them in the same direction

    As far as your specific problem goes, by all means take it to the repair shop, but you should expect to pay more than its worth for a repair if you wanted to go ahead! Some people don't find this appealing, for others it's a small price to pay for the knowledge of a reliable camera! I personally would not get a k1000 repaired if broken, but would get a Nikon fm2n (for eg) repaired as it is a more highly regarded camera and the cost of repair wouldn't so far exceed its value...

    That said, if the shop is any good they will be able to tell you a few things without any cost to your self...
    1: if it is indeed broken, or just not being used properly
    2: if it is broken roughly how much it might cost to repair ... sometime there is a nominal estimate fee to pay for the time to investigate
    3: if it isn't broken, how to use it properly ...

    I hope that all helps, I wish I could be more help... But without seeing it, or seeing what you are doing its hard to advise more specifically when I don't have any specific experience of the camera in question!
  6. Rob MacKillop

    Rob MacKillop Edinburgh Correspondent

    Thanks, Hamish. On closer inspection, the film had been cut at the little sprockets that wind the film onto the spool. This seems to have been caused by the film being stuck in the film container - cheap film. Even tugging it by hand wouldn't pull it out.

    So I tried another film, and managed to shoot 20 plus photos without a problem - except I can't get the rewind mechanism to work. In fact the top part of the film rewind knob just falls off! Hmm...seems I need to get that fixed. Otherwise it all seems to be working perfectly now. But, as you say, Hamish, it will cost me as much as the camera cost me just to get that fixed. It might be worth it, as I did get it very cheap in the first place.

    Anyway, thanks for your help. I'll let you know if I get it all resolved.

  7. Rob MacKillop

    Rob MacKillop Edinburgh Correspondent

    Quick follow up - The company I bought it from on ebay are sending me out ''an equivalent or better'' for a return. Excellent service - we shall see.

  8. Hamish Gill

    Hamish Gill Well-Known Member

    Well there we go... Good news!
    Keep us posted, I'd be interested to know what they send you!
  9. Pete Askew

    Pete Askew Admin

    Welcome to RPF Rob. Sounds like you have found out why this is such a great place already. Looking forward to seeing those film shots once you're up and running. :)
  10. Brian Moore

    Brian Moore Moderator

    Welcome Rob. Pity you had problems with your new old camera. Good for you for persisting, though. I'd agree with Hamish that a camera like the K1000, much celebrated workhorse though it may be, is likely not worth spending the money on to repair. There are millions of functional good quality film cameras out there that can be acquired for a fraction of what they used to be worth.For example, my Konica Autoreflex TC, which I bought for $11.50 here in the US, is perfectly functional, and I've taken a lot of pictures with it since I got it a few months ago. I have many other film cameras. Most I acquired off E-bay or flea markets or what have you, and a few have been given to me by friends who don't shoot film any more. Anyway, point being, there are lots of good old film cameras out there. You'll find that shooting film is different from shooting digital. Not just because you have to put film in the camera and later get it developed, but also because using a film camera forces you to think about your photography in a different way. And for me personally, there is something satisfying about the inherent suspense when shooting film. Good luck. And again, welcome to RPF.
  11. Hamish Gill

    Hamish Gill Well-Known Member

  12. Pete Askew

    Pete Askew Admin

    Especially when you only have 12 shots, eh Hamish. Or 2 in the case of a large format camera.
  13. Hamish Gill

    Hamish Gill Well-Known Member

    ... 11 in the case of the blad with its 2 first shot overlap issue ... i was taking the first shot with the lens cap on ... hopefully that should be fixed when it gets back from Phil! :)
    looking forward to the idea of 15 from one of these 645 fujis ... its amazing how well timed this camera is with my pay day Fuji GS645S Professional 120/220 30 shots a roll, 60mm wide angle lens stunning! | eBay
    that is where I have decided to spend my cash btw, over and above all the other things we were talking about the other day... something medium format, but also smaller than the blad tick a lot of boxes for me!
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2012
  14. Rob MacKillop

    Rob MacKillop Edinburgh Correspondent

  15. Brian Moore

    Brian Moore Moderator

    I like your pics, Rob. In particular the one with you and (I presume) your daughter in sepia tone. Also, enjoyed a quick tour of your site, in particular the little video of yourself playing the composition for machete on the ukulele. (That WAS a ukulele right?) Anyway,...delightful!
  16. Pete Askew

    Pete Askew Admin

    Nothing to be worried about there Rob, some very nice shots. I like the first one and agree with your comment about a Rubens look. Nice glow to the lighting and I like the way you have used darkness towards the frame. I like the composition of the next two very much (and the frame treatment). I prefer the toned B&W over the colour (transfer) version - maybe it is just a bit too saturated for the simulation, what do you think? The next I really like - nicely captured especially as she is so engrossed with her shot. I think a fine black border would well nicely.

    I'm not so keen on the landscape picture but then I prefer a bit more contrast with these sort of shots and it looks like there is a slight lean to it. The red square is interesting. Although it has no true content I quite like the texture and tone and I also like the next shot for a similar reason (but it does seem to lean to me). The next two (portraits in sepia and colour) are stunning and I really like them. I'm a big fan of alternative processes in film photography and these simulations work very well I think.

    I would like to see a bit more density in the face in the portrait in front of the desk but I like the effect overall. I find the next (with specs) a bit more difficult but I think that is because it would look better separated more from the other images. And the last (sepia) is very nice. The frame of the face within the D-shaped highlight works well and the feeling of a moment of pleasure really comes across I think.

    So, all-in-all, a nice set. I think I'd try to separate them out or present them slightly differently though to get the most out of them. Thanks for sharing them though.
  17. Rob MacKillop

    Rob MacKillop Edinburgh Correspondent

    Thanks, Brian. Yes, that's my daughter. Taken with an iPad, held in my right hand.

    And, yes, that was a uke! Surprising how much good music was written for it. The machete is just another name for a uke, and the Portuguese repertoire is very nice. Glad you like it!

  18. Rob MacKillop

    Rob MacKillop Edinburgh Correspondent

    Hey, Pete, those are great comments, and very much appreciated! I've never had a photographer comment on my images before, and although I think you were being kind to a nervous newbie, I think your comments are sincere. I never noticed the leaning problem before - now I can see it clearly. I'll look out for that in the future. And I also appreciate your comments on presenting the images better. I agree with you on every point.

    Thanks again.
  19. Rob MacKillop

    Rob MacKillop Edinburgh Correspondent

    Oh, the red square was a mistake. I was on a bus and accidently hit the trigger on my G10. I can't even remember where the camera was pointing, and I was very surprised when I looked at the image later. So, although I would like to claim some level of mastery over abstract images, in truth it was a freak accident. But I really like the result. That's photography for you!
  20. Hamish Gill

    Hamish Gill Well-Known Member

    You look to be doing very well for someone who describes then self as "very much an amateur"
    Feel free to post some in the relevant places in the forum for more specific "critique" if there is one thing that i can guarantee you it is that no one here will ever "destroy" you ...
    The fact that you say you like them to me means you are off to a very good start ... the biggest battle is liking your own work, i suspect you are aware of that as a musician ... at the end of the day enjoying what you do and what you create is the most important thing and is basically the foundation of this forum! we are after all "real photographers forum" and the biggest thing that defines a real photography for me is someone who enjoys taking photos regardless of anything else!

    as for your small steps, well you know where we are if you need any help with any of them ... we have all sorts here ... from film users to digital, purists who dont like pp to people who boarder on digital artists with the amount they do to their photos ... all sorts, and all willing to advise and comment ... but as i said, never "destroy" its just not our thing ... so yeah, dont be shy, if you want to know peoples thoughts on a photo ... get some in the forum :)

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