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Thread: Exposure, Bellows and Fuji Instant Film

  1. #1

    Exposure, Bellows and Fuji Instant Film


    I'm brand new to large format and have gone through my first pack of Fuji instant 4x5 film (FP100 C45).

    I've been shooting only portraits with a softbox and the film provides superb results: rich saturated colors, etc.

    However, it seems when I underexpose the film, it gets better.

    For instance, for one shot, I should have opened up by 1/2 stop to accommodate for bellows extension however, I just set the aperture on the camera to the meter reading and got great results. I double checked the bellows compensation calculation and know it was correct so I'm assuming underexposure for the instant film is a good thing. (or maybe bellow compensation doesn't apply when using flash, but I doubt it).

    I was reading a thread about Fuji Velvia--and I don't want to sound sacrilegious--but does anyone know if Fuji instant film has the same characteristics as Velvia: four stop exposure range and it's beneficial to under expose 2/3 to 1 stop?

    Thank you for your help.


  2. #2

    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Westport Island, Maine

    Re: Exposure, Bellows and Fuji Instant Film

    Polaroid, in my experience, was notorious for not acting the way its ISO said it would, so that might be at work here. The Fuji might actually expose better at some other ISO.

    It's no different than my testing HP5 and needing to use it at 200 rather than Ilford's suggested 400, or FP4 at 64 rather than 125.

    F'rinstance, Type 72 (Polaroid sez ISO 400) used to routinely expose better at ISO 800, or even sometimes 1600. I even had one box wander from 400 to 1600 over 20 exposures. I just changed the ISO setting on my meter and was thrilled with the extra speed.

    Moral of the story: do what works!
    Bruce Barlow
    author of "Finely Focused" and "Exercises in Photographic Composition"

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