My Love of Film

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I still shoot film and in a way love film more every year. I have just picked up a Nikon F100 Film Camera for £150 second hand from Cambrian Photography combined with a 50mm 1.8G lens also second hand for £99. I now have the perfect fast action Street film camera. This camera is stunning its also in fantastic condition and cheap as chips, as I remember this camera was around £1200 new.

Everyone knows I only shoot Fuji Camera’s for Digital, but I shoot all different makes of film camera from Nikon Fm2, Olympus OM10, Fujica St750,Nikon F100, and quite a few others. I also love the old 120 roll film cameras without names that I find on my travels.

I just love to get out and shoot Street with film.  I love the discipline of shooting 12, 24, 36 exposures and love the imperfections that can happen with the use of film. When I picked up my F100 from Cambrian I picked up a couple of rolls of out of date Ilford Xp2 Super, cheap to process in C41 and great for some nice grain. I could not wait to get out and shoot some Street.

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I hardly ever show my film images, it’s a long story why, but to cut it short many years ago I lost all my printed images and negatives in a flat fire. Years and years of work all gone in a few hours. I lost a lot more than that in that fire, I lost a vinyl collection that included the first record I had ever brought and lots of other items of sentimental value.

I learnt a lot that day about possessions and it changed the way I see my photography and life to this day.

My love of photography is the act of going out and creating images and being out there on the streets teaching and connecting with people. The images that I have shot a week ago or a year ago don’t have much meaning to me unless I have an emotional connection with them so after a while if I lost the lot again I would not be as upset as I was the first time it happened. The images that do mean a lot to me however are backed up off site so they are always available !

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The reason I don’t show my film images on social media or to anyone else is the simple fact I want them all to remain pure ! Sounds crazy, but I don’t want them to be judged by others or commented on. I want these images just for me. I am only showing these few today due to the fact this was the first roll of film I put through the F100 so it was just a test roll.

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I love to go out and shoot film with a variety of cameras it makes me re think my work and also slows me down and makes me look. I get into a very fast Street rhythm and at times its to fast so changing cameras makes me see so much more. Every time I get used to shooting with one film body I will take a different one out, even though I know them all inside out just the change is refreshing.

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I also find its so refreshing after a day out shooting film there is no rush to edit, you can go home sit down and have a nice cup of tea, you don’t have that urge to get the images off the memory card to see what you shot !  You have to wait.

I don’t develop or print my own any more, I leave that to Cambrian Photography and only take the film over to Cambrian when I visit for Workshops etc, this way its quite exciting to see what I have on the contact sheet when I get my film back.

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I normally just get a contact sheet with the images scanned to disk and then from that point, if I like what I see I will progress to larger hi res scans or prints. Its not as expensive as some people think and this roll of 24 exposures film was £4 and it was £6.99 for developing and scanning.

CNV00021I went out with my F100 and my X100T with Jim Moody the guy in the image above to have a wonder around Liverpool and shoot some Street. The images from my X100T were off the memory card and on to Facebook within and hour of getting home !  I even said to myself I am sure I shot more than that ! It was then I released I was shooting film as well.

I also changed rolls part way through the day, so I still have a few images I will forget about over the next few weeks. So it will be a nice surprise next time I take a trip to Cambrian.

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If you have not shot film for a while or your have never used a film camera its worth the time and effort to get a second had camera and a roll of film and get out and have a go.

If you have a young family film is great for the children and it teaches them vital skills for the day they pick up a digital camera. I have a few friends that have introduced their kids to film and they are loving it, one lad has just gone of to UNI to study photography and has not shot digital yet ! I will never stop shooting film and the best bit of shooting film is the simple fact that when I am dead and gone all the images on my hard drive will be lost forever but the prints and negatives will be there for my boys and their family’s to look though and enjoy !

The colour images that follow are just a few that I managed to save from a snapped off roll of film from my FujicaSt750.

I just love the imperfection on this roll, it was also the first roll of colour film I put through this camera. There is something about the imperfections in photography that make me want to shoot Street more than any other subject, so combining my love of Street with my use of film just has to be done..

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12 thoughts on “My Love of Film

    Victor Bezrukov, photographer said:
    May 8, 2015 at 12:37 pm

    Another inspiration! !

      matt6t6 responded:
      May 8, 2015 at 12:42 pm

      Cheers buddy, you have some stunning work. I used to see more of it when I spent more time on G+ and less time teaching 😉

        Victor Bezrukov, photographer said:
        May 8, 2015 at 12:50 pm

        Thank you very much. Right now going to load another film exposed in Ethiopia to the tank. Great time ;-))

        matt6t6 responded:
        May 8, 2015 at 1:14 pm

        Sounds exciting ! Every time you have a look at the strip of film I bet you smile just a little bit inside 🙂

        Victor Bezrukov, photographer said:
        May 8, 2015 at 1:16 pm

        I smile like crazy and my heart is still almost stopping the beat when i open the tank after the fixing.

        matt6t6 responded:
        May 8, 2015 at 1:18 pm

        Ha ha I know what you mean, film is still the best.

    Petra Clarke said:
    May 13, 2015 at 6:56 pm

    Hi Matthew will you be running any film based workshops in Liverpool any time? I’m moving back to film more and more.

      matt6t6 responded:
      May 13, 2015 at 7:30 pm

      Hi Petea, What type of course would you be looking for ?

        Petra Clarke said:
        May 14, 2015 at 4:26 pm

        Hi Matthew your street photography workshops but using medium format and/or slr film cameras would be great.

        matt6t6 responded:
        May 14, 2015 at 8:25 pm

        If you wanted to book on one of my Street Workshops and email me to tell we what one I would teach Street film at the same time and teaching the rest of the course. Its just a little slower but would not cause an issue.

    Sean Shannon said:
    August 6, 2015 at 1:08 pm

    Hi Matt. I loved what you said about not wanting to post your film photos on social media so that they remain pure. That speaks to me so much! I went through a very anti-Facebook phase recently and did not want to shoot any digital, rather just film and only get prints without scans so that anyone wanting to see my photos would actually have to visit me, have a cup of coffee and a chat before looking through the prints. I’ve since softened that stance! 🙂

    I still have my film cameras (a Nikon F5 and FM3a) from 10 years ago and use them regularly. The FM3a just makes me feel so connected to the camera and photography. I’ve being eyeing out Fuji for digital for a while now and will definitely make the switch in the near future, just trying to decide which one to buy!

    Really enjoy your style and your work!

      matt6t6 responded:
      August 6, 2015 at 1:14 pm

      Thanks Sean, it’s also a great way of reconnecting with the real world ! It’s why I prefer Fuji and the people that use Fuji ! It’s just like it used to be before Social Media. Have fun with film I do 🙂

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