My first film experience

Somewhere around 2008 I got my hands on an old Pentax K1000. A fully mechanical SLR camera which can be used with a light meter. I shot two films with it, developed them in a lab, got the prints and was done with this topic. They were not bad but the process of analog film development was just not interesting enough at that point. I sold the camera shortly after.

Fast forward to 2018. My wife is interested in the actual process of film development. How is it done? What happens between inserting a roll of film and having a print/developed photo in your hand? We got a Pentax K1000 again, because this thing was still pretty cheep back in 2018. We bought some black and white film and a basic development kit for our DIY home lab experiment. The process of developing the roll is very easy and fast (15min) and everyone who ever did that is rather laughing about our excitement. But it was our first film and we learned it the hard way: Youtube. After we got the first rolls done, we were pretty exited to look at the negatives. At that point you would place them on an enlarger but we made a turnaround here and got our hands on a film scanner (Epson V550) instead of a film enlarger due to space and baby reasons. Again, the results were cool, the process was fun and we learned a lot but then it stopped right there.

It was a year later when I picked up a very tiny Olympus 35rc in near mint condition for like 30€. I took it with me on our summer vacation with a hand full of black and white film. Again I developed them on my own and then scanned them with my Epson. This time it was different. This time, it was really about photography, composition, light and frame and not so much about the process of developing film itself. It was fun. It was so different.

You see the bad quality of the rather poor lens, the huge amount of dust and the sometimes over/under exposed images. They are far from perfect (shot and developed) but I made them from start to finish and that is the part which makes them work for me.

So what is the status today?

I still shoot film in addition to digital. I also bought a medium format 6×6 which I really appreciate at the moment. There were some shots posted before so have a look there. Also stay tuned for more film photos soon because I have a ton of negative and positive film still to be scanned. In addition, I bought a real 35mm film beast and a summer vacation is right ahead. It will be very different again.

Location: Fano Denmark
Camera: Olympus 35rc
Film: Ilford hp5
Scanner: Epson V550

The Yashica Mat-124G

Film photography is still one of my favourite types of art. I own a few SLRs and a small Olympus 35 RC rangefinder camera but I never had the chance to play with medium format. I got a good deal on a Yashica Mat-124G and developed the film myself in my bathroom. Like always.

I was blown away by the quality of the photos. Even with all the dust on my Epson scanner and all the little scratches I made during the development process. It is something different than small film.

In 2019 we spent three month in a hospital and it was there, when I first tried the Yashica.

The lightmeter is broken and I try to meter with my iphone which works surprisingly well. However, it is still a long road to deliver a proper quality image.