Gifted Cameras, a Reddit Post, and a Small World

Today, I would like to chronicle a small story of an event that happened to me just a few days ago.  It’s an interesting story that truly shows how small the world is, how awesome the film community is and how our cameras are more than what they appear to be.  I will try to regurgitate this story with clarity to the best of my ability, so please bear with me.  I would like to tell the story from my own perspective and order of events, even if they aren’t purely chronological.

As most know, I am a middle school teacher with an after-school film photography club.  My school is tiny and our school community with students, staff, and parents is extremely tight knit.  I am pretty much known as “that guy” when it comes to photography and technology since I teach both subjects at the school.  Due to this dynamic, this next event was made possible.

About two or three months ago, a parent of one of my photography students asked to speak to me after hours.  At the time, his wife/the student’s mother was still battling cancer, but sadly, she has since passed away.  I thought maybe it regarded this sensitive topic.

He brought me to his car and told me he had some photography equipment for me.  At the time, I thought it was his personal gear [when i received this package, I later developed an exposed roll of film left in one of the cameras, thinking they were photos that he took.  I also made a few digital prints from some scans I did of the roll as a gift to say ‘thank you’].  About a week later, I learned from his daughter that he picked up the gear at a garage sale over that previous weekend.  He paid a negligible amount of money for the gear and said, “I saw this stuff and thought of you.  If you want it, you can have it.  Use it with the kids, use it for personal stuff, it doesn’t matter.”

He lifted the trunk of his car with a camera bag and two cardboard boxes worth of film things.  The cardboard boxes contained some generic darkroom and studio equipment: developing trays, paper, old packets of developer, tripod, light stand, studio strobe, and so on.  Some really useful things that we use quite often in our club now.

He then opened the camera bag.  According to my coworker, I was really bad at hiding my emotions and excitement.  I thought I was going to see your run of the mill film SLR; perhaps a Canon AE-1 or something of the like.  But instead, I was gifted a Rolleiflex 3.5f with a 75mm Zeiss Planar and a Yashica Mat 124.  I use the Yashica to introduce the kids to TLRs, but I’ve kept the Rollei by my side.  In regards to the Rolleiflex, I truly couldn’t believe how lucky I felt. Needless to say, I was elated.  I was and still very much am sincerely grateful.

Since receiving the camera, I have debated putting it up for sale, perhaps to find some other gear or maybe doing something for my photo students.  I felt I couldn’t justify having a camera that had such value when I could do more practical things like buying many more cameras, buy film, or darkroom supplies for the after school club, or maybe trading it for something different for myself.  I guess it was technically was mine after all.  Over the course of a month or so, I struggled with the idea of keeping the camera or letting it go.

I felt that receiving a camera as a gift because someone specifically thought of you as the recipient is a bit different than someone saying they have a bunch of old cameras laying around in my attic and they don’t know what to do with — so they dump them on you.  I realized that something about letting the camera go just didn’t seem right to me.  So it stayed with me for the time being.

Fast forward to just a few days ago.

A couple of days ago, a coworker of mine (the same one who was present when I received the Rolleiflex  and who also has an interest in film) sent me a link that directed me to an Imgur post that included a story that originated on Reddit regarding a Rolleiflex.

Long story short (you can click through to read it verbatim), a man had a Rolleiflex camera that belonged to the Roosevelt family.  Yeah, that Roosevelt family.  He posted the story of these cameras to /r/history just to share the amazing story  and uniqueness about these cameras.  Another user gave a fairly verbose response to the cameras, assisting in identifying and informing OP more about the cameras, even offering his expertise and assistance.

A third person chimed in with a (drunken) comment to the helpful commenter, stating that his father had two Rollei’s he wanted this helpful commenter to have due to his apparent knowledge and passion for film photography.  These cameras did in fact end up being sent from one Reddit user to another.

At the bottom of the Imgur post that summed this all up, I checked out the Flickr link that was provided which included photos that he took with the gifted Rolleis.  Upon scrolling through the photos on his Flickr page, I couldn’t help but notice a gleaming familiarity with these images.  Once I saw a certain photo, it had hit me.  The owner of this Flickr account, who was the recipient of two Rolleiflexes from another Reddit user, was someone who was  previously featured here on Now Developing.  That person being Derek Boswell.

Once I realized this, I messaged Derek via Facebook and explained this longwinded revelation to him.  I told him how crazy I thought it was that this Imgur post about the Reddit cameras was forwarded to me by a coworker, simply by chance.  I also explained how I was also gifted a Rolleiflex and was previously playing tug-of-war with the idea of letting it go.  However, once I read the story and realized who it was attached to, it was obvious that I could never, ever sell my Rolleiflex or let it go.  It was really touching to see that Derek and I shared very unique stories of being gifted such iconic and beautiful cameras.  We’re both very lucky, to say the least.

Derek and I have since agreed to make a pact that we won’t let these cameras escape our ownership.  Hopefully, Derek and I will also be able to meet up and take some photos together in the coming months and hopefully you’ll see more of his work posted here in the future.

With all this being said, the world is a really small place.  This story has made me reflect a bit more about how great the film community is and can be.  It’s nice to feel close with people whom of which are seemingly so far away, physically speaking anyway.  It also makes me think about the stories that our cameras carry with them; some cameras have been cradled through the hands of historical families, while others have meaningful stories simply because of human kindness and chance.  Hearing these stories always give me the goosebumps, but being a part of one is all the more better.  Plus, I am pretty sure that karma exists for situations just like this.

Of all the cameras that have past through my hands and onto others, I hope that those cameras live a long journey with more interesting stories to tell.  And as for the ones I own with stories already engrained in them, I’ll be sure to cherish both the cameras and the stories within them.


Part of the Process: Szalai Imre

Part of the Process is a series of posts that puts the spotlight on film photographers and DIY film developers.  These features provide unique experiences and perspectives on shooting and developing film while also showcasing diverse talent and film photographers around the globe.  If you are interested in being featured, feel free to contact me!

Name: Szalai Imre

Location: Budapest, Hungary





What attracted you to film photography? How did you get started/introduced to shooting film? How soon after did you start developing?

The physical material of film, the special look, the chemical processes and the fact that taking pictures on film inspires me more than digital.  It extends my imagination and it forces me to be better at photographing. It is pure addiction: I want to experience, learn and I’m enjoying every single moment of it.

What do you like to shoot on a regular basis?

Portraits, glamour, lifestyle, fashion, but street mostly.  However, when travelling or hiking and the nature amazes me, obviously I don’t miss taking a shot of it.

What formats, cameras, and films do you shoot? What do you like about the formats, cameras, films you prefer? 

35mm: Nikon AF600, Nikon FE + 20mm, 35mm, 105mm

Medium Format: Rolleiflex 3.5e Planar, Hasselblad 501c + 80mm + 8/16mm extension tubes

The Nikon AF600 (LiteTouch) is a point&shoot camera with an incredibly sharp 28mm lens, auto focus and manually adjustable built-in flash. Quick, small and invisible. I use it almost exclusively for street photography but it’s also suitable for parties and get togethers.

The Nikon FE was my first favorite.  It made me fell in love with film photography. It’s extremely handy, very easy to control, and fast with aperture priority function. I use it for taking all kinds of pictures: street, fashion, glamour, lifestyle, portraits, whatever. It is my regular travel buddy.

I purchased the Rolleiflex when became familiar with medium format photography. I love it, however focusing might be a bit tricky sometimes. It is always with me on my travels.  It is small, pretty light weight, and pretty comfortable to carry around. I also use it occasionally in the studio and is a perfect MF camera for street photography.

The Hasselblad is a quite new love. It performs well beyond my expectations. It is a bit heavy though, but shooting models with it is always a pleasure for both of the model and me.

What types of film do you develop?

Black and white 35mm and 120.

Tell us about your first experiences in developing your own film.  How did you muster the courage to give it a shot? What resources did you use?

During a commercial video shoot, I met this guy who said he was developing his own pictures at home. I was always a bit afraid of it, but he told me what equipment I need and we developed my first roll together.

Since that magical moment I cannot imagine sending any of my B&W films in a lab. Youtube can be helpful as well and I was checking out several videos in order to improve the quality of my negatives.

There are several rules I created for myself, just an example: always start loading the film onto the reel from it’s beginning (from the 1st frame, so the whole film needs to be unrolled first).

What is your development process like now?

Not many unique steps, you could simply imagine the standard DIY way. Currently, I am counting the seconds when enlarging prints due to lack of a darkroom clock. This will be my next purchase to have better control on my work. I admire the work of Man Ray and Erwin Blumenfeld and would like to try solarisation as part of the film developing process (not afterwards, but during enlarging).


What’s your processes regarding scanning, enlarging, and/or printing your work?

I scan and just recently started enlarging. If developing is fun, this is an incredible joy! Surprisingly, spending the whole night with enlarging prints does not infer fatigue on the other day, but a guaranteed satisfied smile on your face.

What equipment are you using to develop your film and why?

I mostly use Kaiser products as I could get those are most accessible.  So far, I am happy with them. For developing, I tried and used Ilford’s Id-11 developer, but then tried and settled with Kodak D-76. It results fine grained, sharp and nice, contrasty negatives.

My everyday fixer is also Kodak (I use this both for negatives and prints). I have to admit that I’m kinda loyal toward Kodak as a brand and I also love their film and respect their past and know-how.

However, my favorite B&W film is Fuji Acros 100 aside from Tri-X. My darkroom is situated in a bathroom, where I also hide under a blanket usually to make sure it`s totally dark in there, but for my printing process, I just finished and equipped another dedicated room. Printing doesn’t require 110% darkness but only 99% is enough.

Are you content with where you are now with your shooting and developing? Do you have any future plans or ambitions?

I’m still learning the basics, but later on I would like to try solarisation, making montages, apply sandwich negs, and use other/any creative ways to give shape to my own style. I would like to make exhibitions and publish my “work” on different platforms.

Have you completed any notable projects or in the process of creating something from the film you have shot and developed? 

I was asked to shoot for a fashion blog, which was a great honor and a fun time with the models and authors. They were happy with the results and appreciated eventually that all the pictures were on film. The special look of it convinced them as well!

What advice can you give to others who are interested in shooting and developing film but are apprehensive about getting started?

It’s really not a big deal compared to the satisfaction and excitement in the end. If you are worrying about making mistakes (which is – believe me – part of the process of learning and experimenting and actually can be enjoyable), shoot some “not that important” rolls and use them first.

My First Roll: Mark O’Brien

My First Roll is a series for film photographers to share the images from their first roll of film.  Everyone starts shooting at a different time and for different reasons.  Some shooters may have started shooting yesterday while others have started shooting decades ago.  This series provides a glimpse into the humble beginnings of individual photographers, encouraging us to reflect on our earlier work to find beauty and appreciation in our inexperience and to understand how we got to where we our now and where we want to go in our photographic journey.

Mark O’Brien, of Ann Arbor, MI., shares his first roll of film from forty seven years ago when he was just thirteen years old.  The images were taken on a Kodak Instamatic with 126 format black and white film.

Mark O’Brien, August 1970.

Kodak Instamatic, 64 ASA Black and White Film.


Shutter Sounds 004

Shutter Sounds is a monthly, ten-song music playlist based upon my most-played music of the previous month.  These monthly compilations are not limited or constrained to any theme or genre.  They are simply a selection of songs that I chose from my most played artists of the month for the readers to enjoy while shooting, spending time in the darkroom, or want to listen to something new.

Shutter Sounds_004, December 2017.



Reader Excerpts: Found and Lost

Today’s feature comes from Craig Peters.  Craig shows us a large format photography project that visually represents his feelings towards certain aspects of his life.  

Reader Excerpts allow those who read Now Developing to become part of the collective by sharing a written piece alongside their images on a topic of their choice.  If you have any ideas for a piece and would like to have it featured here, feel free to contact me!

Found and Lost, shot and written by Craig Peters (WebsiteInstagram)

The images Uncomfortable, Sadness, and Revelation are all about my reaction to having anxious feelings towards questioning my religious beliefs. The latter piece being the acceptance that it is alright to not be religious, as I experienced some anxiousness in questioning my beliefs. The symbols on the torso in that image are the Pax Cultura Freedom symbol, an important symbol in my own life regarding the freedom of the arts. The other three images are a physical manifestation of those feelings. They are the personification of my emotions depicted in the first three images.

So in the studio for the still lives, I would get the lights how I wanted and turn off all of the lights. In darkness, I would open up the 4×5 lens and pop the flash manually depending on how closed down I wanted the aperture to be.

For the three portraits, I used a rail 4×5 and lit it with modeling lights and synced the flash to the shutter on the 4×5 lens.

For Anxiety I wanted a self portrait with myself obscured. I took a piece of sheer black cloth and shook it in front of me with continuous LED lights for about ten seconds.

Why You Should Leave the Light Meter at Home (At Least Once)

Why You Should Leave the Light Meter at Home (At Least Once)

When I first started shooting film, I toyed around with some auto-exposure point and shoots (I think I still have that Canon SureShot 35AF somewhere) that I picked up from a local thrift store.  I simply just wanted to give film a try.  As I quickly researched and progressed through different 35mm cameras, I finally mustered up the courage (with plenty of pressure from a friend of mine) to purchase my first medium format camera.  Not only did I not know how to load my new-to-me Mamiya 645 Pro TL with a non-metered prism, but this would also be the first time that every step of the photographic process would become a more manual experience.

Mamiya 645 Pro TL w/ 80mm // Kodak Portra 400

I had never used a light meter, loaded a roll of 120 film, nor had I ever really forced myself to manually focus prior to the purchase of that camera.  At that time, I remember being so afraid to learn how to work a light meter.  For some reason, that device was just intimidating, not worth the expense (neither was the metered prism), or too cumbersome to carry for whatever reason.  After a quick search or two, I found a few mobile light meter apps that seemed to be much more inviting and user friendly until I could muster up the bravery to try a real light meter.  Something about the older ones with all of the numbers really frightened me for some reason.  Knowing what I know now, of course a dedicated light meter performs much better than your cell phone, but at the time, it did the job in letting me get the shots that I wanted and enabled my dependence on using something to evaluate the light in a scene.

The photos I got with my Mamiya are still some of my absolutely favorite photos I have ever shot.  Not only do I love the shots I took with that camera, but there was something about that learning experience that make those pictures a bit more sweeter and more meaningful.

Mamiya 645 Pro TL w/ 80mm // Kodak Portra 400

Over the course of the next few years, I bought, sold, and traded a bunch of different kinds of cameras.  Almost every single camera that I wanted to try or get my hands on, it was sort of required that it would have a built in meter.  While I still tried cameras like the Pentax 67 and Hasselblad 500c, I felt that it was more of a chore to shoot these cameras simply because I had to take a light reading out of camera.  And due to my continuous use of a built in meter, I also felt that I would need to meter the scene every single time I decided to take a photo.  I know that isn’t totally necessary now, but everyone’s habits are different.

Hasselblad 500c w/ 80mm // Ilford HP5

Fast forward to a couple of weeks ago, I had a chance to get my hands on a Leica M2.  After experimenting with other M-mount bodies like the Konica Hexar RF and Leica CL, I just still didn’t understand the mystique behind the Leica name.  Meanwhile, I am still stuck here lusting after an MP.  But, I figured I would give the M2 a fair attempt with the understanding that I would definitely purchase Voigtländer VC ii meter when I found one for a reasonable price.  Turns out, the VC meter is pretty sought out after, maintains its value on the used market, and people don’t like splitting the meter from the body it’s on to sell separately.  And understandably so.

With that, I decided to purchase a Minolta light meter for less than $40.  I used it once on the day I got it, and haven’t really touched it since.  Again, I found it to be a bit troublesome to carry around this extra piece of extraneous equipment simply to take a single light reading on a day or shooting.  At a time where I am trying to simplify many things, including the number of cameras and lenses I have on the shelf to choose from, I decided to leave the meter at home from that day on.  I decided to simply use my instincts and all of those basic rules we learn when we first start shooting photos (f/8 and be there, Sunny 16, and so on).  If I really needed to use a meter, I can always pull out my trusty meter app that served me well enough in the past on more than a handful of occasions.

Yashica A // Kodak Porta 400

While I have only put a few rolls through my M2 since receiving it, foregoing the meter and trusting my instincts has been a liberating experience.  So far, I have only shot three rolls of rather-forgiving 400-speed Ilford films and a single roll of Kodak ColorPlus 200, but I can happily say that I have yet to waste a single frame from absolutely botching a light estimation in my scene.

Leica M2 w/ 35mm Zeiss ZM // Ilford HP5

Sure, I may have missed by as much as a couple of stops, but nothing has been rendered unusable or unfixable with some minor corrections if necessary.  Even when doing a few prints in the darkroom, not much has been lost.  I’ve pushed and tested myself in a variety of environments simply by using the Sunny 16 rule and adapting it to whatever environment I find myself in; whether that be an indoor sporting event, night shooting, or in direct or indirect sunlight.

Leica M2 w/ Canon 50mm LTM // Kodak Color Plus 200

I have found that shooting without a meter has been quite a liberating and confidence-boosting experience.  After depending on something for so long and just going without it was a bit uneasy, it was a great way to put my skills to the test.  When it comes to shooting without a meter, I probably wouldn’t say that it’s one less thing to worry about.  If anything, I probably worry about it even more.  As each roll is developed, I and initially nervous and anxious to see if there will be photos throughout the roll, but in turn I have become more and more comfortable in foregoing a meter.  I’m not saying that I’ll go meter-less from now on or even go shoot a somewhat important event without one, but it makes the simple reward of seeing my images that much sweeter.

Leica M2 w/ Canon 50mm LTM // Kodak Color Plus 200

If you have been shooting for a bit now, but have yet to go without a meter, then I urge you to just give it a shot.  Perhaps you’ve been looking for a new challenge, or simply want to alter your shooting experience just a bit to break from your normal routine for something slightly new and different.  Perhaps you are like I was; scared to remove that safety net in favor of verified, perfectly exposed shots, every single time.  If that’s the case, then I say it may be time to give yourself some room to make a mistake and simply test yourself.  Give up a little control in exchange for a little bit of uncertainty and excitement.  It makes the process that much more rewarding in the end and chances are that you are way better at this than you think.


Reader Excerpts: Views from the Porcelain Throne

Today’s feature comes from Jack Allan. Jack showcases a point of view piece from no other place than the toilet.  The uniqueness is not only in the subject matter and where the series is shot, but the beauty lies in the limitations of the series, both in process and final production.

Reader Excerpts allow those who read Now Developing to become part of the collective by sharing a written piece alongside their images on a topic of their choice.  If you have any ideas for a piece and would like to have it featured here, feel free to contact me!

Views from the Porcelain Throne, shot and written by Jack Allan (Website)

The View From the Porcelain throne was a project that I think I had been musing about for quite a while before making the work. I’ve always loved the imprint that people leave, and interior design taste levels are something from this I feel there’s a large amount of people who make thoughtless choices.

On the flip side, there’s some very well considered spaces, but maybe they’re executed in a way that seems a little bit off. Take framed artwork for example. How is it framed? What have they chosen to be framed? How is it placed on the wall/shelf/other surface? This is what I looked for in toilet cubicles. Little details that make the space unique.

These cubicles are familiar to a very large portion of the world, and they’re a space that everybody is equipped to occupy and ultimately you’re forced to see from a set viewpoint. What I was looking for was a collection of these views, but with quite heavy limitations on what equipment I was to use.

I had just finished my university course in photography, and having spent the last 2.5 years photographing in quite a formal way (re shooting, showing progress in work, building a large body of work etc) and with a Rolleiflex, it just felt natural to grab a disposable camera for this project. What better than a camera with a basic set of features for a project about toilets.

Equipped with a viewfinder, film advance, flash, lens, film counter and what loaded with FujiFilm Superia 400, this little guy had 27 shots ready to go. The entire project was shot on this one camera as it gave me a crappy limitation on shots I could take, and the inability to edit the photos afterwards. Except this crappy camera only gave me 26 frames in total, limiting me a tiny bit more!

Working with a 35mm lens in these small spaces was entertaining, and even more so when the flash would go off, and another patron of the bathroom would make audible surprise noises. I quite enjoyed this little quirk amongst all of the strange spaces I found myself in.

There’s a green monstrosity of tile that was in a hotel of cool blues and grey tones everywhere but this toilet, a frowning frog in a frame watching you and a stall with what felt like a white stable door keeping you safe. These spaces became more and more entertaining as I pressed on!

The final result consists of 26 6×4 prints from Boots (a drugstore photo lab) which are limited to this run as another level of limitation for this project. This very sudden impulsive project is probably one of the favourite pieces of work I’ve made, and I think I’ll always have a soft spot for it!


Part of the Process: Sadie Bailey

Part of the Process is a series of posts that puts the spotlight on film photographers and DIY film developers.  These features provide unique experiences and perspectives on shooting and developing film while also showcasing diverse talent and film photographers around the globe.  If you are interested in being featured, feel free to contact me!

Name: Sadie Bailey

Location: London & Los Angeles




Project Upcoming

What other websites or blogs do you keep up with to feed your photographic interests?

Matt Day on YouTube, @inverse.collective and @ilfordphoto on Instagram.

What attracted you to film photography? How did you get started/introduced to shooting film? How soon after did you start developing?

The tangible, “forever” aspect of film has always interested me. I have a contact sheets from my childhood that family friends have shot when we were in NYC and that was always the coolest thing to me. I’m extremely sentimental, probably too sentimental at times, so being able to document my life so purely was just natural instinct, really. I’ve been shooting film on and off for years, but it always seemed extremely pricey when I was younger. Now that I’m older, and run my own publishing company / online magazine, am I able to really dive into the art of it all.

Contax G1 w/ 28mm Biogon // Ilford HP5 +1

What do you like to shoot on a regular basis?

People! Not necessarily portraits as such. Much more “lifestyle”. A lot of my work is based around skateboarding, surfing, music & nightlife photography. However, when I’m in LA I do tend to explore the more street / landscape photography approach because I feel like the atmosphere there is extremely beautiful. I just shot a project where I skated up and down Sunset Blvd photographing buildings and landmarks that spark childhood nostalgia.

Nikon FE2 w/ 50mm 1.8 // Ilford HP5 +1

What formats, cameras, and films do you shoot? What do you like about the formats, cameras, films you prefer? 

I shoot mainly 35mm, but I dabble with Medium Format (120) in my studio from time to time. I’ve tested out a range of cameras from Canon EOS 10, Contax T2 & 139Q, multiple Olympus Mju ii’s and various different off brand SLRs but I’m currently settled with a Nikon FE2 (accompanied by a Nikkor 50 1.8) and a Contax G1 (with the beautiful Carl Zeiss G Series T* 28 mm f/2.8 Biogon). For 120- I’ve messed around with a Yashica Mat 124g and have access to a Hasselblad when I’m in LA but I only own a little Holga 120GCFN. It’s a little plastic toy camera, with very limited features / settings but the glass lens captures off some great photographs with the right lighting.

Contax G1 w/ 28mm Biogon // Ilford HP5 +1

As for film, I usually only shoot Ilford HP5 pushed +1 but will happily use some Tri-X (at box speed) if that’s laying about. Ilford Delta 400 is great in 120, the grain is beautiful. I very rarely shoot colour, I mainly avoid it completely unless I’m being commissioned to do so. If that’s the case, I’ll go for Fuji Superia 400 during the day & Kodak Ultramax 400 at night with flash.

Nikon FE2 w/ 50mm 1.8 // Ilford HP5 +1

What types of film do you develop?

Black and white only. I don’t shoot enough colour to get into the development process, however I have an untouched roll of Velvia 100 on my desk so maybe I’ll test my luck with E6 if I get bored.

Tell us about your first experiences in developing your own film.  How did you muster the courage to give it a shot? What resources did you use?

Oh damn. I was a few cups of coffee in, completely overwhelmed after watching video after video on YouTube. I’ve taught myself everything I know about photography so it’s always very trial and error to start off with.

Nikon FE2 w/ 50mm 1.8 // Ilford HP5 +1

I had the chemicals and all the equipment sitting in my office for months, with a roll just sat in tank, before I decided to give it a shot. I was so excited to finally start developing that when I got to the wet sink in my office I dove straight into the process without bringing all of my notes with me. I completely forgot what dilution and measurements I needed for my stop bath & fixer and stupidly ended up dumping half bottle of both into the tank instead. Needless to say, I fucked that roll up.

What is your development process like now?


My workflow process differs drastically depending on what I’m shooting. I can shoot 10 rolls in one night and have them developed in 2 days, or over 2 months and then another few weeks for developing. The only thing that stays the same is that as soon as I finish a roll, I write what it is that I’ve shot, whether I pushed or not, and then whack it straight into the fridge until ready for developing.

I also like to experiment with alternative processes, such as cyanotype, van dyke brown, or photographic emulsion, among many others. Alternative processes are really interesting to me but I haven’t got the time to work with them as much as I want. I hope I can work more with them in the future!

Nikon FE2 w/ 50mm 1.8 // Ilford HP5 +1

What’s your processes regarding scanning, enlarging, and/or printing your work?

I only scan, unfortunately. I don’t have the space to set up a full darkroom so wet printing is out of the question right now. Saying that, a new community darkroom just opened up in Portland, Oregon so when I’m there later this year I’m going to book a session and start printing my negatives for an upcoming exhibition I’m working on.

What equipment are you using to develop your film and why?

I have everything listed under Parallax Photographic Coop’s film processing shopping list (you can find that list here). I trust them with all of my photographic needs and queries.

Contax G1 w/ 28mm Biogon // Ilford HP5 +1

Are you content with where you are now with your shooting and developing? Do you have any future plans or ambitions?

I’m currently in the process of two big projects: one is a community-based project in honour of my friend who sadly took his own life a few weeks back. I’ve joined forces with my friend, and fellow photographer, Ollie Murphy and set to create a book that opens up a conversation of Mental Health. We’re photographing people in my studio and asking them to share their experiences in what we hope to be an open, honest and safe platform. On a more positive note, I’m in the midst (and soon getting back to) shooting my biggest body of work yet. It’s entitled Endless Summer and hopefully will release as an exhibition with all the photographs being shot, developed and printed by myself.

Ilford Delta 400

Have you completed any notable projects or in the process of creating something from the film you have shot and developed? 

All my projects that I’ve ever executed have been shot on film. I’ve never had the desire to try out digital photography. There’s nothing wrong with it- It’s just not for me. I just published a new zine, entitled “We Only Hate the World Monday – Friday”, along with recently shooting for Nike SB and having a 6 page feature in Wasted Talent Magazine.

Contax G1 w/ 28mm Biogon // Ilford HP5 +1

What advice can you give to others who are interested in shooting and developing film but are apprehensive about getting started?

I said this in a recent interview, but I’m happy to reiterate. Stop shooting “party” photos on a cheap point & shoot with Agfa 200. Spend your time thinking of projects you want to work on, and motivate yourself to do so.

Contax G1 w/ 28mm Biogon // Ilford HP5 +1

Do you do anything else that you believe is unique to your process but may not be addressed in the previous questions?
I think shooting for yourself (and not for Instagram likes) is, sadly, becoming a unique process in modern day film photography.

Student Showcase: Club Photos 2017

It’s that time of year again.  As we approach the Holiday season, me and my middle school film photography students begin to prepare for the annual gallery event.  This year has been especially rad because we were able to put together a darkroom and begin enlarging our negatives in addition to scanning them.

In the past, newer, younger students were handed point and shoot cameras to focus on shot composition and film familiarity.  However. these young preteens and teenagers have seriously risen to the occasion this year since I took all training wheels off by handing them an SLR on day one.  The results were nothing short of amazing.  I find it particularly interesting to flip through my students’ images simply because of the subjects they choose to shoot.  Theoretically, it’s probably just like any of us; simply shooting the things that we care most about and find interesting.  However what a 11-14 year old finds interesting is much different. Their worlds are typically much smaller than ours and they find a lot of beauty through the that narrow scope, although each of our individual journeys are much different.

I plan on doing a post later on in the coming weeks on the final results of their work along with the gallery event, but since the students have a solid catalog of images already scanned in, I figured it would be a great time to display some of my personal favorites from the student archive of 2017.  I hope you enjoy the images as much as I enjoyed teaching the film experience to another group of youngsters.

Zoe B.

Joey M.

Anthony B.

Kyleigh O.

Elizabeth B.

Cole G.

Morgan C.

Abbigail J.

Emma D.

Emerlina L.

Anthony L.

Brianna L.

Olivia T.

Haley M.

Talia W.

Jailyn N.

Mackenzie M.

Janelle R.