Portrait session using analog camera and iPhone 12 Pro Max Hybrid Approach

Portrait session using the analog camera and the iPhone: a hybrid approach

Posted on Apr 22th, 2021

Modern devices for extraordinary results

If any of you return to this blog, you will probably know that I have been a great promoter of smartphone photography for many years now. Having also had the chance to collaborate as an official photographer for OnePlus during the product launch for a few years, I know that modern devices can achieve truly extraordinary results.

  I suggest you to give a look at the “Portraits” category: you can find other inspirational photosession shot in Italy and aboard with useful backstages, tips and suggestions!

iPhone 12 Pro Max: rising up the bar of smartphone photos

With the arrival of the latest iPhone 12 Pro Max the bar has risen because we have a smartphone with a larger sensor than in the past, a new stabilization module, and also a software mode that allows you to save photos in the Apple ProRAW format, with all the benefits of the case that I have already highlighted in a previous article.

Back to the root with analog photography

For this year I have also decided to go back to the roots a bit and start to shoot with analog cameras taking care of the whole process: from shooting to development through the scanning of negatives.

So I started to carry out some portrait and fashion photo sessions (there are therefore others to be published soon) in which I adopted a hybrid approach: next to the photos taken with analog cameras, I also used the iPhone 12 Pro Max for the portraits to obtain some photos in Apple ProRAW format.

Portrait session using analog camera and iPhone 12 Pro Max Hybrid Approach

Using my own custom color profile and presets

The reason is also that I wanted to get as much material as possible in order to successfully experiment with my own color profiles and presets to develop Apple ProRAW files.

Being able to test them in the field having new material and in different lighting situations allows me to understand how these presets act and the results I can obtain in terms of color rendering, even in comparison to analog shooting.

If you see noise in the iPhone 12 Pro photos it is because I deliberately added a “film noise” in Lightroom as my stylistic choice. The Apple ProRAW comes quite “clean” with its internal noise reduction, so I want to add a bit of “structure” to the file.

About the analog camera I’ve used for this session

For the analog photos, I used two Pentax cameras: the legendary and heavy Pentax 67 which produces a 6cm x 7cm film frame and a Pentax Mx, a beautiful, comfortable, small 35mm camera.

This was one of the first analog sessions I did back in years and I had some small problems: on the Pentax Mx camera, probably due to my error in loading the film, at some point, the roller did not drag the film well and so I got of intentional over-exposures that I have to say, I don’t mind! Many times what has not programmed leads to interesting results!

Portrait session using analog camera and iPhone 12 Pro Max Hybrid Approach

I also had some difficulties in the first developments I made at home with the new C-41 Kits. For the development of the color film, you have to be absolutely precise in the first phase and stay at the exact temperature of +38C for the chemistry.

I was probably not so precise at the beginning of the first rolls and I got some contrast changes and different dominants that I had to correct thanks to the Negative Lab Pro plug-in that I use inside Lightroom to do the inversion of the scans made.

Hello back iPhone XS!

At the end of this blog post, a little surprise: I also used my previous iPhone XS, shooting in Raw format but this time using the App Halide in order to get the DNG file (remember that at the moment Apple ProRAW is only available from iPhone models 12 Pro up).

Then, to these Raw DNG shots, I applied my presets for iPhone XS which were created ad-hoc for the sensor of this smartphone and thus allow to obtain an excellent final color!

Thanks to the team

Model: Vendela
Agency: Casting Firenze
Makeup: Linda Salimbeni
Styling: Maria Ferrari
Location: Florence, Via San Leonardo.

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