Category : Canon AE-1
I promised you a few weeks ago that I’d share some more film photos from our trip to Chicago, and I’m here to deliver! This was the first trip in years in which I did NOT bring along my digital SLR, but instead relied only on my Polaroid cameras, my 35mm film camera, and my iPhone. Since it was such a quick trip, it gave me a good opportunity to test how I would feel to only have film cameras with me. For the most part, it felt great — especially for my back! I had to trust that I would get some photos I liked, while knowing there would be others I didn’t like so much with no opportunity for a do-over. And, those sentiments proved true. Although there are some photos that didn’t meet my expectations, and I couldn’t check them on an LCD screen the moment I took them to make sure “I had the shot,” I’m okay with that. I embraced an analog weekend, and I’m content with the resulting photographs.
Having already shared my favorite Polaroid shots from the trip, here are my favorite 35mm photos from our 36 hours in the Windy City!
These last two trips with my Canon AE-1 camera — this Chicago adventure and the British Columbia retreat — are making me fall in love all over again with 35mm film. What are you in love with these days?
Sometimes it is difficult to step back and take a look at the big picture. It’s especially hard when the flu catches us by surprise and knocks us off our ass for a few days like it did to me this past week. When work deadlines loom, family obligations and other to-dos pile up, or you aren’t in love with your new haircut, yeah, it can be hard to embrace gratitude. But having a nudge, a gentle reminder to go wide with our view of ourselves and our lives can be a game changer in the way we feel.
We might see that love is all around us if we just look for it. We might be reminded of the fullness in our lives and so much more. I’m over at Mortal Muses sharing a bit more gratitude through my lens. I hope you click HERE to check it out.
I’ve written before about my longing for connection, for kindred spirits, for sisterhood. I’ve shared with you my loneliness of living in an unfamiliar place, of having a small circle of local friends. These longings and loneliness have propelled me to go outside of my comfort zone and outside of my own town. These feelings have given me the push I needed to create communities of connection, to seek out kindreds and sisters. This began by attending retreats and gatherings, and doing so helped me begin to meet “my people.” From there, smaller groups of sisterhood were born.
One of these groups evolved from attending two photography retreats hosted by Shutter Sisters. While attending the second retreat with about 80 women last October, a small circle of us found ourselves at dinner enjoying margaritas, raucous laughter, and each other. As we ate and drank and carried on together, we birthed the idea of splintering off and creating a smaller creative community for ourselves. Within the evening, the Canadians in the bunch decided we would descend on British Columbia for our inaugural gathering. Over the past year, we stayed connected, made plans, rented a house, and bought plane tickets. And a few weeks ago, our idea manifested itself.
Many dreams and projects were shared during our time with one another. One of those ideas was that the group of us would dive into the 10 on 10 project, sharing 10 images shot on one day or in one experience on the 10th of the month. As our first post for 10 on 10, we decided we would each share photos from our time together in BC. Without further ado, here are my 10 on 10 from British Columbia and this magical retreat that was born of kindred spirits coming together for sisterhood, photography, and self-care. (BTW, you can click on each photo to view them larger!)
It didn’t take long for this group of photographers to whip out our cameras and start shooting. I think we looked like a group of paparazzi the entire time we were together. After taking the ferry from Vancouver to make our way to Tofino, we stopped at Cathedral Grove, an old growth forest with trees older than 800 years. The massive trees were amazing and the light among these old beauties was nothing short of magical.
On our second day, we ventured to some natural hot springs, a journey requiring another boat ride to get there. Being out on the open ocean, we were surrounded with beauty in every direction. The mountains, the ocean, the fog…breathtaking.
The small cove that houses the hot springs gave us more opportunities to capture the natural beauty that is British Columbia. I had considered not bringing any cameras with me that day as rain was in the forecast, but fortunately I brought one. I would have been so saddened to have missed this reflection shot.
Although we had an epic storm come through, and I do mean EPIC, we were blessed with many moments of sun and gorgeous weather. And this crew of women did not disappoint with the COLOR that they packed to wear.
Amidst the shooting, the relaxing in the hot springs, and the indulging in yummy food and deep rest, we deepened our friendships with one another. We shared our work, told each other our secret (and not-so-secret) creative dreams, and opened up about our struggles. Indeed, a new sisterhood was born in British Columbia.
Although we’ve been home for only a few short weeks, I’m already missing these sisters. I’m grateful for our ongoing connection and I’m so excited about the new adventures we have in the works. Thank you Cherish, Corinna, Debra, Lindsey, Tamar, and Tara — stay loose. xoxo
All of my photos in this post were shot on 35mm film with my Canon AE-1 using either Fuji 160 or Portra 400 film. The film was processed and scanned by Indie Film Lab. I have Polaroid photos to share with you from the trip and a few more 35mm pics, too. In the meantime, head on over to Lindsey’s blog to see her 10 (or maybe more) on 10 of our BC adventures!
When one door closes, another opens; but we often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door that we do not see the one which has opened for us.”
– Alexander Graham Bell
I’m over at Mortal Muses today talking about portals, doorways to other worlds, and escape hatches. Click HERE to check it out!
As you know, I’m in the thick of my current photography project — 365 Impossible Self-Portraits. Given that I’m focused on shooting a self-portrait each and every day using instant film, suffice it to say that any and every camera I own with the exception of my Polaroids lie sorely neglected on my shelf. This thought got me reminiscing about 35mm and going through the last roll I shot.
I shoot a variety of formats — digital, Polaroid, 35mm, 120/Lomography, and iPhone. I love each of these formats for different reasons, and I appreciate that photography allows me to play in such different forms of the same craft. In shooting across these spectrums, I often think about if there is one format I like “best.” So, being wired the way I am as a researcher, I decided to do a little experiment and shoot the same scene with multiple formats. I thought this might help me really see some of the differences and similarities across instant film, 35mm film, and digital platforms.
I hope you click HERE to see the rest of my post over at Mortal Muses where I compare and contrast three different images of this colorful rocking horse. I’d love to hear your thoughts on which you like best!
Have you ever stopped to think about the ways you walk or drive around the town/city in which you live? Do you drive/walk the SAME route every time you go to work or to the coffee shop? Inspired by Lindsey’s Mortal Muse theme for this month, “around me,” I got out and about here in Lincoln, NE. I realized how easy it is to just go about my days, walking or driving the same routes, and not venturing out onto new paths or spaces in this small city. I felt grateful to have the nudge to see what’s around me (with my 35mm camera!) for either the first time or with fresh eyes.
Grilled cheese and tomato soup, a perennial lunch fave…
This weekend couldn’t come soon enough. Tony and I are headed back to our grad school haunts, Columbia, Missouri, to attend the True/False Film Festival. This weekend’s event marks the 10th anniversary of the documentary film festival that all started back in 2003 while we lived in Columbia to attend graduate school. We’ve attended every festival and this annual tradition is an important one for us. It allows us to visit a town we deeply love and miss, catch up with friends who still live in Columbia and with those who come back like us each year for T/F, and see amazing and thought-provoking films. And oh yeah, and eat lots of food from our favorite Columbia restaurants!
The weekend always feels a bit magical, like this illuminated tree that I photographed while attending the festival last year. It feels like a needed escape into a different world during the thick of winter. I’m realizing that my travel itch hasn’t been scratched in months and that this lack of trips to look forward to and take has been a big contributor to my funk and struggles during January and February. So, I’m grateful that this weekend of magic and escape is gearing up.
We are seeing 10 films, and I promise to share my thoughts on them when we return. Two films I’m most looking forward to seeing are Which Way Is the Front Line from Here? The Life and Time of Tim Hetherington and Cutie and the Boxer. We saw Restrepo at the festival a few years ago and it remains one of my favorite documentaries. Tim Hetherington was one of the brave filmmakers of Restrepo and was killed over a year ago by a mortar blast in Libya. I am expecting this new film about Hetherington to be as impactful as Restrepo. On the total opposite end of the spectrum, I’m hoping to feel uplifted and inspired by the love story and creativity of Cutie and the Boxer. And that’s just two of the ten that await me this weekend.
Given my affection for surprises and all things unexpected when it comes to shooting with film, you likely already know that I’d be into expired film. The unexpected surprises you discover when shooting with expired film is like a double bonus — first you have the surprise of using film and second you have the surprise of what the expired quality may have given you. I’m sharing more on expired film over at Mortal Muses today, and I’m giving away some expired film to one lucky reader. I hope you click here to check it out and enter for a chance to win some expired film to play with.