Shooting film again... / by nicole struppert

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Last year I was strolling around at Camden Market and saw this little camera an Olympus Trip 35 in mint condition. I bought it for 25 pounds without knowing if this little box would work of not :).
 

It is more than 20 years ago since I shot my last roll of film. I do remember it so well. I spent my whole summer in Hawaii and my father gave me a little Rollei 35 to document my trip.

One day my cousin, friends and I spent one of the best days in my life. We were at the Waimea Falls Park, hiking in the rainforest, swimming in the waterfalls and hiding in Banyan Trees. It was such an unforgettable day and of course I documented everything with my camera! 

I still do remember so well, when I went to my photo dealer to get the prints of my Hawaii trip. I was so excited and finally upset when I figured out that the roll of film didn't transport -  I didn't have a single picture of one of the best days in my life! 

Today we have all the digital tools like iphone, small point & shoot cameras, DSLR's. There is such a minimum chance that you get lost of images today. After my experience I stopped shooting film for a long long time but the love to film was still burned in my heart.

It was coincidence finding the Olympus at Camden Market. Last year I was starting to think about getting a film camera and luckily I found the luckily I found the little Olympus in excellent condition. The camera looked good but I didn't know if the camera was working, but I didn't care and thought it is worth it to buy it. I got 2 rolls of Ilford HP5+ and started to shoot. 

I had no plan what I was shooting. I just wanted to try out the camera and see if it works. I went to Portobello Road and shot my first roll of film after 20 years. The difference between shooting digital and film is you think twice if it's worth it to take the picture. Film is expensive and it is a total different flow - it slows everything down. 

The camera worked well - it has it quirks - but hey it was just 25 pounds. I had just one situation when I wanted to shoot a guy who was reading the newspaper. It was a very  personal moment and I tried to catch the frame but the camera didn't work. The release button is a bit tricky and the transport wheel wasn't in the right position. It took to long to get my frame and so the guy figured out that I wanted to take a picture of him. Her was running after me, yelling and I was really scared to get hit... But finally everything was ok.

2 months later I got my negatives and was very excited... I couldn't remember what frames I had taken - and was surprised to see my pictures. The pictures are totally different of the style I usually shoot with my digital cameras.

So, finally what do I like about film? 

I absolutely enjoyed shooting with film. I loved the slowed down workflow & the process to  think before I took a frame. The last time I just shot pictures who could be interesting without having any concept.  I am pretty happy with my first result but the next time I will work a bit on a concept while I am shooting film.

I totally love the texture of film. The images are not sharp at all and texture makes the look special - more artistic. It is really hard to get this look with a digital file - even if you are working with the VSCO presets. The digital files will always look more clean...

Will I shoot more film?

YES! In March I will travel to Barcelona and Dubai. I am sure this little camera will be with me during that trip and I hope I will experiment a bit more with different films like the Portra 400 and other Ilfords.  I will keep u updated about my experience.