I shoot film


This shot was taken on a dull day, weather wise. But silver birches are anything but dull, even when the sky is overcast. I love their luminosity and the gnarled texture of the bark. It’s a black and white photographer’s dream. So I spent as long as I could get away with photographing them. While I was setting up this shot, a trio of hikers wandered into view, carefully skirting around me so as not to ruin my shot. One of them stopped for a little Bladmiration™*.  “I’ve got a Mamiya at home in the loft,” he told me. “But it’s far too heavy to carry out on the hill.” It’s true, they are heavy if the alternative is a point and snap, but compare it to a high end or even mid range DSLR and I’ll bet there’s less in it than you might think.

A few minutes later we met another pair of hikers. “I shoot film,” one of them told me. “but not today. I like to travel light when I walk.”

I know what he means. There have been times when I’ve cursed the heavy weight I’ve lugged around all day, only to find that the light wasn’t right or the scenery uninspiring and I haven’t taken my camera out of my rucksack.

This wasn’t one of those days, But most of my shots were in colour and it doesn’t seem right to post them here. They’ll have to wait for another day.

*Bladmiration – an admiring attitude towards an old Hasselblad camera.



  1. I sometimes don’t get the “I like to walk light” excuse. I mean, I get it if the person has a legitimate health problem, but unless someone is shooting with a large format rail camera, I don’t find schlepping any film camera around that hard. My 503cx is pretty damn compact. I’ve also got a Pentax 67. It’s about the heftiest film camera I’ve got, but if I thought it was worth it, I’d toss on the extra weight. If the weight would be an issue, you can’t get more compact than an old 35mm manual camera (I’ve also got an old beaten up Nikon F3).

    Ok, sorry. I don’t mean to trot out my camera collection here. My point has more to do with there not being that much of a difference in carrying a DSLR and most other film cameras.

    P.S. I love the shot.

    • I agree Pete. I guess it depends what you are out there to do. But I suspect from the way the people who stopped were eyeing up the scene and asking what we were shooting there was a little regret that they hadn’t got/no longer used their film cameras. And that’s exactly how I feel when I leave Vlad behind.

  2. I know that struggle all to well. Which camera(s), how many, which format and film(s), tripod or freehand etc…
    You look a bit worried here…

    • I love that you’ve said which cameras! I’ve taken to throwing in an extra Holga at the last minute because it’s only plastic and weighs next to nothing.
      Not worried so much as confused about why it’s there.

  3. Even in my mainly *ahem* digital world there’s not much difference between the weight of say a Nikon D300 with a 50mm lens and a fully kitted out Hasselblad. Bladmiration™ indeed.

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