I’ve been working on a few film-based projects as of late. Getting my hands dirtier and getting back to some of the things that made me initially fall in love with photography. The more tactile aspects of it. Old cameras and expired film and the like. And there’s the anticipation as well. The waiting for the images. It can be a nice thing to not know exactly what’s gone through your camera until it’s processed. There’s more surprise. Which granted is nicer for me than for editors. And which is why I don’t hand in rolls of film to clients.
But for personal work, I’m trying to shoot more of it, with varying degrees of success. I’m rusty. I still tear the sprockets of my 35mm film and my hands get sweaty when I’ve groped around in the dark for too long, looking for the developer that I swore I had just a minute ago. I’m also lazy, and never check water temperature, or use very precise measurements for my chemicals. Sometimes I wash my film with shampoo while I’m in the shower. Then it hangs in the bathroom until my fiance complains enough for me to take it down. But I don’t know. I guess that’s all part of it. These days, the results feel like they should be grittier. The film should get a bit scratched up. There should be some imperfections. Otherwise, what’s the point? I’m trying to be less perfect from now on. To let the mistakes build up into something possibly beautiful. I’m not there yet, but I’m working on it.