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Ektachrome | A whole Different World

Updated: Sep 15

This one surprised me as well.

This Sony Film Simulation is something else, because of its volatility, but also because of the unique beauty it has, because of how it fluctuates and shifts colors depending on light source and the way it's exposed.

All shots were taken on the Sony a7 III + Sigma 24mm f2 Contemporary + 9Artisan Black Mist.

The Kodak Ektachrome is an extremely volatile Sony Film Simulation recipe, making it hard to work with, but most of the times will render interesting results if you know how to use it.

The colors you get out of this Film Simulation will depend greatly on the light and the way you expose, making it a lot of fun to play with but also pretty tricky.

2 images shot at approximately 5 seconds apart, one cloudy, and one with the sun coming out, just as a reference.

Normally when shooting film you would expect color shifts and inconsistencies to happen, because it's an analog medium, and every little handling detail matters.

The way you preserved the film, light and temperature wise, how old is the film, how you developed the film, how long you developed the film, every small external factor will influence and deteriorate the film roll, making film so unpredictable and organic.

And for many of us that's the reason why we love shooting film. The imperfections, the volatility, the mystery.

Digital is exactly in the opposite spectrum, it will offer you stable accurate results with precise color reproduction, which was amazing for 10-20 years, but we got bored of it.

We don't want to see accurate colors all the time, we have our eyes for that, we want funky interesting colors to inspire us and make us wanna take more shots, inspire us to learn and have fun.

That's why in the last couple years we see so many people returning to film or film alternatives. We are volatile & colorful beings, and we want to reflect that in our photos.

Underexpose it and the whole image will shift towards magenta, expose to the right and it will go more towards green, get warmer, more saturated with deep colors.

The softer the Light, the less contrast and saturation, this film simulations seems to have, but

the brighter you expose, the more vibrant the colors.

It's interesting to see how it reacts differently to different type of lighting. Check it out!

Cloudy vs Direct Sunlight.

First shot morning at 11 AM cloudy skies which offered soft light.

Soft contrast, cold pinkish colors

Second shot at 5:30 afternoon, not even close to sunset yet, just direct sunlight, so the color shifting is not because of colors given by sunset.

Overall warmer tones, Much stronger magenta shift in the skies, and deeper more saturated colors. You would think these 2 were shot with 2 different Sony Picture Profiles.

Extremely volatile and ever changing Sony Film Simulation Recipe.

And that is because Ektachrome's Characteristics, which are rich and deep colors, which in soft light can be exposed properly and consequently render a soft cold image, but in direct sunlight it will get much deeper, saturated and with high contrast transitions between Shadows and Highlights.

I love it, but I am unsure of the Magenta shift in the skies, that kinda bothers me sometimes, other times it's exactly how you want it to look like. Pretty weird, must confess, this Sony Film Simulation surprises me as well.

Check the Color Shifting happening in the darker parts of the sky and lighter blues.

I am still unsure whether to correct the magenta tint or not, what do you think?

I was also curious to see if the colors come out differently on my RX100 VI compared to my Sony a7III, and they did come out quite differently. Let's see the differences.

Check the color in the glass, the furniture, the whites.

If you play attention, the color differences are quite obvious, the RX100 VI being more on the Blue Green side, while the a7III on the Magenta side.

If it's not obvious, let's double check. Check the Color Values from top of the screenshot.

Both pictures are shot with the exact same settings.

Sony RX100 VI - Ektachrome Film Simulation

if I mode the cursor in the blue area, it barely has any reds in composition, it's mostly just Blue & Green

Sony a7III

When it comes to the a7III, we can see it has a lot more reds lurking into the blues, which might the reason why the skies sometimes shift towards magenta

A7III Blues seem to fall on the magenta side, while the Blues on the RX100 VI will be more accurate to real life, which is surprising to see taking into consideration both camera were released only a couple months apart, and they still have such a different color science.

And you can see, with the a7III we are getting exactly the same color shifting on the cup as we saw in the skies.

Brighter parts are shifted towards green while colder parts are shifted towards magenta.

Sony a7 III

Sony RX100 VI

While the RX100 VI has virtually no color shifting in the blues compared to the a7III and it looks much nicer in my opinion.

If you find your Sony camera to fall into the Magenta side, I recommend slightly lifting the color filter towards Blue-Green (B-G) until colors are corrected, and maybe raise the Color Phase in the Picture Profile Menu by on Stop (+1), that should fix the magenta cast over the whole image, just be gentle, don't push these settings too far.

I played a little bit with the color filter settings, don't remember exactly the values, but first is the base Ektachrome recipe, while the second one is pushed more towards green with the help of the color filter.

You can see how this simple adjustment cut down the Magentas in the sky almost completely.

raise the Color Phase by 1 stop and you are good to go.

Sony Standard Colors vs Ektachrome Film Simulation

Shot on Sony a7III

I dig the Ektachrome look more than Sony's regular colors.

Sony Standard is pretty boring, hues of Greens and Reds are too much alike, mashing them together and making the whole image dull looking.

Ektachrome Film Simulation offers better Dynamic Range, nicer tonalities and there is a lot more color contrast between the Greens and the Reds.

I will keep experimenting with the settings to see if I can come up with any improvements, but till then, let us know what you think of this recipe?

Also, I think I forgot to activate the Vignette Correction for the lens which might also bring more of the magenta hues into the scene corners.

Greens get naturally shifted toward colder tonalities (teal) when underexposed, and towards warmer tones when overexposed.

In these shots I really like how the skies are coming out

Greens are super deep and shifted towards Teal Cyan

Loving it!

What are your first impressions of this Film Recipe?

Let us know in the comments

You can explore All Sony Film Simulations


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