I recently travelled to New York – the second time in my life, but my first visit as a photographer. I intended to shoot the entire trip on film only, and decided to take a roll of something I’d never shot before to have some results that would be a bit different to what I’m used to. This took the form of a roll of JCH Street Pan, a film I was aware of but didn’t really have much knowledge about, aside from that it was formerly CCTV stock, and mildly infra-red.

Unfortunately, in hindsight, I wish I’d done a little more reading, as I would have made the decision to meter for a different ISO, probably 200, or even 100. The negatives were very thin, and I don’t think I did the film or my images justice.

Still, I’m glad to have tried it out – as with any experience I consider a “failure” in photography/life I can work with it as a lesson for the future. When I first scanned I was really worried as every frame was much, much darker than I’d been hoping for. However, I’m very aware that this film is a favourite to some, and far more capable of rendering crisp clarity than my own experiences would imply. Although I won’t be buying any more to shoot myself I think I can confidently recommend the stock to any photographer seeking unique grain, and intense contrast in their street photography.

I think that despite the thin negatives I’ll enjoy printing these, especially the ones from Central Park – probably on Foma paper, to really emphasise that grain.

~ Simon

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About the author

Simon King

Simon is a London based photographer and photojournalist. He is currently working on long term personal projects, and has been shooting on 35mm film since late 2016. You can follow his work on Instagram, or read his personal blog, both linked below.

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  1. I think your shots are fairly representative of JCH (I have only shot two rolls of it, mind you) — grainy and high contrast. The shot of man-on-bench is outstanding.

  2. Thanks for the commentary and the pics. I picked up two rolls of JCH a couple of years ago. I came to the same conclusion after shooting my first roll. I shot @ ISO 400, but after processing the first roll, I should have exposed it @ EI 200. I’ve got the 2nd roll in the ‘fridge, just waiting to use it. BTW, I think I processed the film in ID-11, following the times supplied by Freestyle Photo.