Viv newbie...

AndyWilson PRO 8:17am, 6 June 2008
I bought a Ultra Wide+Slim from ebay last weekend and have just finished my first film (expired May 2005, just to make the most of the lo-fi experience)

I'm expecting lots of thumbs in shots etc when I get them back from processing later today, so maybe I should have asked this question first....

Any tips for getting the best of the viv?

I guess the normal wide-angle things apply - low viewpoint, foreground interest etc?

Do people have much success shooting "from the hip?"

Shooting into the sun seems to be a "Good Thing" ?

How much photoshopping do users tend to do? None at all? A quick curves/levels adjustment? Exaggerate the vignetting? Boost the saturation? Fake xpro? None at all because that goes against the "lo-fi" ethos?

Thanks in advance for any advice / comments / ridicule :)
Hani Amir Posted 9 years ago. Edited by Hani Amir (member) 9 years ago
I don't do any processing cos the results seem special enough. Especially cross processed. I mean, I wouldn't even know what to do with these even if I were to process them, they seem perfect as is.

"Cube Sparrow" by haniamir [?]
Cube Sparrow
"Connectivity" by haniamir [?]

Yeah I guess normal wide "rules" apply. The image you get will be wider than that in the viewfinder though. And make sure to keep your fingers and the little strap away from the lens!

I've had a lot of success shooting from the hip with this cam, its pretty easy since its so bloody wide. These two were shot from the hip and a great example of how good the camera does B&W as well (I didn't process these either).

"" by haniamir [?]

"Tuff" by haniamir [?]

Shooting into the sun is known to produce its trademark flare. Check out the "Viv Flare Challenge" threads for some great examples.

As for tips, be gentle on the winder and have the most fun you can! :D

edit: Also if you're new to cross processing, different films give different colour casts. I've only had the chance of shooting one roll though (they just don't sell any slide film at all here), so I don't have much experience. That lady called "Trapac" and also the guy with the monkey, uhh, "Slimmer Jimmer" have some awesome images and seem to have shot every film on the planet with this camera, so make sure you check out their streams too.
inetjoker PRO 9 years ago
Get close and get low.
dont think
Jason Cabreros 9 years ago
I like that, "don't think". AKA33 has mentioned it before in another thread and it's stuck with me, "shoot into the sun".
yeah aim for the sun , always!
Macc Matt [deleted] 9 years ago
keep your fingers away from the lens
Trapac PRO 9 years ago
Dude Crush... :)

My tip: Wind it on after each shot when you know you are going to be using for a bit so you are 'ready for action' the whole time.

Only when you know you are out of time, the world calls and you are probably taking your...

...'last' shot: DON'T wind it on. Especially if you are putting it back in your pocket/bag/car, or else you'll have inevitable shots of your pocket/bag/car/hand. That shutter button is more sensitive than you think. (Not quite XA2 sensitive, but enough....)

Don't say you weren't told when it happens...

(It always happens.....)
David Cowie 9 years ago
My Viv must have a stiffer button than Trapac's, because I've never had any shots of my pockets.

I never do any post-processing on my Viv shots, because I'm lazy and the supermarket minilab does a good job (meaning that the pictures they develop are usually close to how I remember things looking).
slimmer_jimmer 9 years ago
My tips:

1) remove the strap - it'll only blow into your shots, and you won't be aware of it because of..

2) the viewfinder is waay too conservative so figure on getting much more in shot than you see through it.

As for shooting from the hip, I think the viv is perfect for that. And shooting from arms length. On a bike. Or out of a car window. Or over a waterfall. I take one with me everywhere, and do things with it (!) that I wouldn't want to do with other, more expensive, cameras. So I think it's very lightweight plastic-ness encourages you to search out new angles.

Oh, and Dude Crush, likewise :)
David Cowie 9 years ago
Dude Crush wrote
The image you get will be wider than that in the viewfinder though
slimmer_jimmer wrote
the viewfinder is waay too conservative so figure on getting much more in shot than you see through it.
Time to drag out my picture showing how much wider the lens is:
For the Vivitar Ultra Wide & Slim group
The building in the centre of the photo filled the viewfinder.
AndyWilson PRO 9 years ago
Just got the first film back and VERY pleased with the results :)

Gave them a quick boost of the blacks and some fill light to compensate in Camera Raw more out of habit than anything!

A few are in my stream now :)
Arachide PRO 9 years ago
Looks like you got the hang of it pretty quickly - those are some really nice Viv shots in your stream.

/off topic - Have to say I am insanely jealous you got to see X-Ray Spex live. As a teen, they were one of my favorite bands and I still occasionally crack out my copy of Germ Free Adolescents.
femurbreak 9 years ago
I took photos of a tortoise today, hope they come out nice :)
AndyWilson PRO 9 years ago
Best suggestion of the thread! - wondering where I can find a tortoise now...
StudioCB 9 years ago
Hi all, just purchased a Viv costing all of £7.00 (quite expensive considering my friend got his for £1.99), I am in the process of taking my first pics with the camera and I'll upload the shots after I have completed the roll and scanned them. The funny thing is, and without showing my age, I had a camera similar to that many, many years ago and cannot find one of the pictures I took. I was just a kid!

Anyway, I am looking forward to my results and will share them with the group.
dewi_did_this 9 years ago
I just got my vivi today....can't wait to play!

What's the lowest possible light conditions can I get away with, though?
ξαβλ 9 years ago
Congratulations! They're fab cameras... such great fun, and I'm sure you'll have a blast. Just be gentle with the wind-on mechanism ;-)

As for light conditions, it depends on the film, but you can get away with a lot more than you might think. For example, this shot was taken on Velvia 50, on a dull overcast day, and there's still plenty going on:

"Arghhh!" by teepee1 [?]

I guess the best advice is that there's no better way to learn than by experiment...
dewi_did_this 9 years ago
Thanks Xavier....I just bought a bunch of expired 100 and 400 film, so yeah....guess it'll be trial and error.
Dollymae Dagger 9 years ago
Hey y'all- just got back my first roll of film & I must say that my expectations were more than exceeded. My brother, who also has the slim & wide, was the one who turned me on to this camera. He also told me that when I got back my first developed roll, I will find that will be things I didn't want in the frame (i.e. your finger, your shoes, ect.) Ha, ha, ha - not even knowing this before I shot, I was still able to capture some excellent footage, and with a minimum of finger bloopers. I absolute love this CHEAPO camera. And the special lo-fi effects are a total bonus.
ξαβλ 9 years ago
dewi_did_this You can get some really interesting colour shifts with expired film...

"sunshine" by cthopper93 [?]

Then again, you may not... it's all part of the joy of film ;-) Look forward to seeing what you come up with!

Dollymae Dagger Wonderful, aren't they?!
kevin dooley PRO 9 years ago
My advice:
1. Carry everywhere, always.
2. Point at orange, yellow, green, or blue.
School bus
laanba Posted 9 years ago. Edited by laanba (member) 9 years ago
I'm going to jump in Andy's thread for a minute to say that I'm a newbie too and just got back my first roll. I know I'm going to love this camera!

And this thread has been so helpful so thanks everyone.

Houston Skatepark
galechicago 9 years ago
I'm new to the Vivi, too. Just got my first roll of film back, Kodak Tri-X 400. Really excited with the results! I am looking forward to contributing to this inspiring group. That little lens is indeed ULTRA WIDE.

1959 T-Bird
Marcelo Colmenero PRO 9 years ago
I just got my own, came by mail.
Already loeaded with Fuji Superia ISO400 and took a couple shots.
Im going out soon to take some shots here in London (haha i hope the sun shows up so i can get some of its glare...)
AndyWilson PRO 9 years ago
I'm sitting looking out of an office window in London - viv in bag loaded with Superia 200 - thinking walking back through park for snaps on way to station will be a waste of time on what looks like the greyest day since -er - the last very grey day...

They should make Superia 12800 for the British Climate!
slimmer_jimmer 9 years ago
I was shooting Velvia50 today in London, under grey skies. OK, so I was pointing upwards, hoping to get some nice crunchy silhouettes, but shows you can't let the weather totally defeat you...(now whether anything comes out, who knows, but I have had some nice results with 50 ISO and the viv before)
b4be 9 years ago
I just got some velvia 50 back today. Some pics came out too dark which I was surprised about because I thought there was plenty of light but most came out fine. :)
paprcups 9 years ago
Editing film photos in photoshop just makes the entire point of film moot.

Photoshop is for digital things. Film is better than that.

I get very annoyed when people do fake xpro to their digital/film shots or even do other stuff in Photoshop. The entire point of film is that you only have one chance to get the shot right. If you are going to edit it in photoshop, you might as well carry a digital cam around and take as many shots as you like without worrying about wasting film. Of course, this is partly due to financial concerns, but even so, I still feel that editing film photographs in Photoshop just ruins the whole experience and point of shooting with film.

Doesn't it feel like a copout to you? It feels like one to me.
Simon Tomlinsоn 9 years ago
Ilovetheopera I used to totally agree with that, now I only mostly agree with it. I scan my own negatives now and if you do so you'll realise that scanners do their own brightness/contrast adjustments, you simply have to. There is no such thing as an unadulterated negative shot (I mean you have to invert it for a start). Changing colours is one thing, but photoshopping to improve brightness and contrast is simply like holding a positive slide up to different light sources. I guess there are very many Flickr debates raging about this stuff elsewhere.....:-)
Simon Tomlinsоn 9 years ago
Oh and by the way

Photoshop is for digital things

Flickr is 100% digital, as are scanned negatives!

(but again, i agree with the spirit of wot u rote.., just saying that's all)

AndyWilson PRO 9 years ago
what's wrong with spotting the potential for a better, or even just different, shot in a negative or scan - then using photoshop to realise the effect you want? It's no different to doing it in a darkroom with smelly stuff is it?

It appears to be one of my photos that prompted those comments - yes I did photoshop the f*** out of it, but it was for fun and experimentation which is pretty much in line with the toy camera ethos isn't it?
AndyWilson PRO 9 years ago
ilovetheopera I've actually just re-read your comment on my photoshopped viv shot...

"Translucent" by AndyWilson [?]

What I originally read as quite light hearted now, taken along with the post above, now seems rather bitter. Sorry if my manipulations have offended you - but surely it's the results not the methods that count? I never tried to pass it off as anything it isn't. It's clearly labelled that it's been heavily edited - and it would be impossible to shoot a square vignetted photo with a vivitar UWS anyway.

By the way - you've got some great photos on your stream - even the digital ones ;)
kustom1958 Posted 9 years ago. Edited by kustom1958 (member) 9 years ago
Hello, I wan't to get in on this too, since I was inspired by a similar thread to go out and hunt down a Vivi UW&S. I got my first three rolls of film back, (cheapo 99 cents store film, 200 speed. Processed at Sam's Club!) And I Love it! This is the coolest little camera for the money! I posted some of my shots last night , So thanks everyone for the tips and for this helpful thread!Bugz
JeneaWhat 7 years ago
Hi everyone..I saw that you all have really good shots on your vivitar i hope you don't mind me asking, but is the vivitar really a difficult camera to control? out of a roll of 36 shots i only get less than half to come out. most of them are just bleached out or have weird light the ones found in my album. the shots that do come out a kinda blurry. i tried shooting in all types of light...sometimes direct into the sun..out at buildings etc. could the cam i bought be broken?

my first 2 rolls can be found here. really hope you guys can help.
cornelius crab [deleted] 7 years ago
Some Vivs have what seems to be a sticky shutter that stays open a tiny bit, and can give you weird ghost shots:
that looks like what's happening with some of your shots.

Some of the shots like this one have more motion blur than I'd expect at the Viv's normal shutter speed:

So I suspect that perhaps the shutter on yours is slow, and sometimes sticks parly open. The UWS takes neat pictures but it's a REALLY cheaply made camera, even for a toy camera.
ohtomiko [deleted] 7 years ago
I just found a Vivitar UWS at goodwill literally the other day ($1!! Best deal of my life), got the film developed, and I'm pretty much extremely happy about the results.

However, when people said that it doesn't work well in low light, I didn't think there would be THAT much grain in the picture, I just thought it would be black, which I'm fine with.

Did I think wrong? Was it the film?
I used expired Kodak ISO400 film.

Any advice? From what I see, no one else seems to have had this problem..
Simon Tomlinsоn 7 years ago
I imagine the grain is so visible in that shot because it's mostly very dark and underexposed - and the lab scanner (assuming it's a lab scan?) would have to work harder to get a 'decent' balanced scan, and that would reveal more grain. And the fact that it's expired film would also be a factor with grain I think.

I think if you could rescan it yourself you could adjust the settings to get a much darker interior and a much less grainy image.
idk how fast y'all would reply but hopefully its ASAP.
i just got my Superheadz Ultra Wide and Slim camera (pink, blue, green.) i'm a little worried because I've been hearing that the camera is crap under low-light conditions? I dubbed this camera to be my numba one playa this weekend at the Fine Arts festival; it's a competition for teens in art, photography, and various medias. there's a big celebration ceremony at the very end and it's pretty much like a concert. i was hoping to use my UWS camera there. so is this camera limited to outdoors/bright sunny day conditions? ):
rentavet PRO 6 years ago
outdoors and sunny with 100-200 speed film........ you're gonna have to use fast film for less light........... and your mileage may vary depending on the camera...... low light put it back in the ziploc sandwich bag and use something else unless you've got 800 asa..... at least that's been my experience with 3 different vivs. great camera but it likes the light
As with any new camera don't depend on it first use, have another go to camera. or shoot a test roll since you've got a couple of days
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