I Have No Idea What I'm Doing
So here it is, I'm starting a blog. Massive disclaimer - I'm not a writer, so go easy on me. Please. I wanted to start writing to give a more personal touch to my website. I have an About page but other than that it's just photos. Where better to start than my new love of analogue photography. I have scrolled through many blogs that were a little too detailed for a total newcomer to film like me, so here I want to create a space for those starting out. Hopefully my experiences so far can help.
It's All There in Black and White
After shooting three test rolls of Kodak Gold with my Asahi Pentax K1000 it was time to experiment with a few different types of 35mm film. Might as well get started on the seemingly endless options out there. Thought I’d narrow it down a touch and go with black and white film.
Going Against the Grain
If you want low grain then just use a digital camera, I know. But that’s too easy. And I normally like grain. Anyway, for the sake of argument you want to shoot using a film with low grain. Step up Cinestill 50D, this is your time to shine. This is a daylight balanced (the ‘d’ bit) rated at ISO 50 (yep, the 50 bit).
'Blad Boy for Life
When the opportunity came up to borrow a Hasselblad for a bit, how could I say no? I mean these cameras went to the moon. Apparently there are still 12 up there, left behind so the crews could bring samples of lunar rock back. I’d swap lunar rock for a NASA edition Hasselblad 500c any day. Before I get in to things I’d like to say a big thank you to Con Hionis for lending me this little beauty from 1984.
After trying out the Hasselblad and looking up how much they cost, I realised I needed a slightly cheaper entry into shooting medium format. I cruised the web and came across so many different brands and formats, so I knew it wasn’t going to be an easy task. The thing with buying vintage cameras is you’ve got decades of technology to choose from and it seems like every model has a dedicated legion of fans.
Going Back to My Roots
My dad Alex received a Yashica MG-1 for his 21st birthday way back in 1977 and when I went back home at Christmas he said I could have it. This is the camera that took the vast majority of my childhood photos, so it’s a pretty important piece of kit to me. I always remember it being massive but that’s probably because I used to be a lot smaller...
Get it India
To say I was excited to go to India in February is an understatement. My wife Dia’s family is from Kolkata and we were heading over for our Hindu wedding ceremony - the first time I was meeting her extended family. I was hoping to get a bit of time to explore the city between wedding rituals, meeting the family and being fed kilos of sandesh.
Point and Shoot (and Put in the Wardrobe)
I was talking to my mother-in-law Puloma about photography a couple of months ago. Her older brother Asok is a great photographer and she has followed his lead as the self-appointed documentarian for her family events and holidays (and annoying her husband Dilip a few times along the way). Turns out she had her old camera tidied away somewhere, so off she went to find it.