Film Photography: Love at First Exposure

Just Black and White

“The most regretful people on Earth are those who felt the call to creative work, who felt their own creative power restive and uprising, and who gave to it neither power nor time.” -Mary Oliver

When I first started photography, I remember hours spent in the basement taking action shots of my little brother doing flips and cartwheels into a crash pad. We’d together be mesmerized by the way he was trapped in a single moment, suspended in the air by the invisible strings of light painted onto the digital file of a camera. It was a point-and-shoot lens, bright blue like the sky and oh so perfect for the young photographer in me that simply wanted to take photos that felt good because it always felt amazing. It was inspiring and beautiful in ways that I couldn’t explain well at the time and I took photos of everything. Owls at night, flips in the basement, food, and a young bearded dragon I owned for a short time.
I felt like a hunter in the way I would stalk the creatures I sought after, and with the eyes of an eagle, (there was a zoom function on the camera) I could see my prey with more size and clarity than ever before.
Back then I was an outdoorsman through and through but what was shown through my photos was closer to the kind of relationship I have with the wild spaces today- people in them, haunting owl silhouettes, and my smiling grin as someone else took the photo of a bull snake in my hands.
Photography had another person enthralled with it. After a lapse in time I found it again, I bought a Nikon Coolpix S32, then shot on my moms Nikon DSLR, and moved on to what I use now, a Nikon D7100. At first, I yearned to shoot with film and thought that the price of film would be much more difficult to deal with and years passed where I never once touched film at all.
As a college student playing and testing now with what TheOutLife means to me, and trying to develop my photography in the process, I have found a special place back in the history of my heart for film. It’s simplicity, gentle shutter, and inherent beauty are things I had once fell in love with, and now I find myself back in the throes of its beauty. It’s more natural than a digital file, more aged than my own skin and mind, and it has an atmosphere I find absent in other spaces of my creativity.
The camera I shoot on is a Sears KSX (Ricoh KR-10), and I love how the camera body will take all kinds of 35mm film out there. It feels as if you’re loading a pacifist’s gun with ammo and how you choose to shoot is what you load it with. The film advances forth like cocking the hammer, and the finger is poised to deliver the finishing blow. Photography carries with it a certain romance, and nature, the world outside, carries with it that same modest pride.
The world is filled with these things that take our breath away and fulfill the imagination past the tipping point of awe. It takes time to see it, to want to see it, but everyone has their passion instilled within the gentle beat of their heart. Jim Carrey said that what you do in life discovers you, you can choose to ignore it, you can choose to not do it, but it’s a part of you as surely as the eyes with which you see the world.



Hiro View All →

A young writer and photographer who loves the outdoors with a significant passion. I believe that what the environment needs is people who have a close relationship with the land through the things they do out there. Check out all TheOutLife social media avenues and feel free to send some feedback!

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