Faroes - day 2

Friday 7th February, 2020.


A good sleep. waking early to a still, deep darkness. Aurora Watch says we ought to be able to see some action but the 8 okta cloud cover says otherwise. Coffee, fruit and biscuits to wake us up instead. Once the daylight appeared we got to see and appreciate the view from the house.

Not Scotland, not Thailand, but with some characteristics of both. I loaded the Fuji with Kodak TMY 400 ISO film and fitted a deep yellow Tiffen filter. Why that one? It’s the one I have. Why a filter? We’re going to be focusing on landscapes and I want to try not to wreck the skies: the yellow will darken the bluer highlights in the sky and reveal the cloud texture. You can see how this turned out in the header image on the previous page, which was taken later that morning.


The delightful little village at Bøur has some great views, including the Draganir Sea Stacks, an iconic feature of the Faroes. All around the islands and in these communities are signs reminding visitors of the importance of respect for the environment, the creatures that live here and the people. One of the striking features of this place is the black sand beach (see header image, taken with Kodak Portra 160).

Digital backup

I finished that roll of TMY at Bøur on the beach, and backed up the captures using the Ricoh GRIII I carry everywhere, and my Fuji X-T2 fitted with the brilliant Fuji 16mm f/1.4 prime lens. I wondered whether the sun was too low in the sky for the Portra film (Miami, this ain’t) but the film worked out really nicely, in my view (see header image). The best image of the day has been a 3-photo stitch of the village Gasadalur from the bench at a hairpin bend in the road looking west towards the helipad that was the only outside communication link for the community before the road was built.

Later - re-scanning

I re-scanned a couple of these images to see if the output quality was any better. It is, depending on how you measure it. This is a (reduced version of the scanner output) 350 Mega-pixel file, scanned from 6x9cm negative at 6400 dpi:

Island (Re-scan)

If you compare the quality of image I got with the Fuji X-T2 (Gasadalur, above), there really is no argument for film photography, based upon these results. Now, I know that medium format cameras capture a lot of information, but that depends on a lot of things being exactly right. Get more than a couple of parameters sub-optimal and you’re wasting your time striving for that Nirvana of image-making.


Image Camera Lens Film/ISO Aperture Shutter Comment
Header image Fuji GW690ii 90mm Kodak Portra 160 f/22 1/30s The black sands at Bøur beach
Miðvágur Ricoh GRIII 18.3mm ISO 1250 f/16 1/30s  
Draganir Sea Stacks Fuji GW690ii 90mm Kodak TMY 400 f/22 1/30s (cropped)
Gasadalur Fuji X-T2 XF16mm F1.4 R WR 400 f/11 1/60s 3-image stitch pano. Bigger on Flickr.
Island re-scan Fuji GW 690ii 90mm Kodak Portra 160 f/8 1/60s Hand-held

Film exposure details