Roll by Roll: Highlights from my forth roll

For my forth roll I picked up some Portra 400. I’d seen so many great pictures with it and had to try it out myself. Subsequently it took me so long to finish this film! It spans across several weeks and came with me too the top of Mount Snowden, Bath, Jersey and everything in between. I mean the film was quite expensive so maybe I was a little over protective of it – maybe I really wanted to make sure each shot was as good as the ones i’d been looking at!

It goes without saying that this film is beautiful. I am extremely happy with how my pictures came out in this run, I do have to give credit to being able to shoot at some great places though.

During this roll I switched between a 50mm lens and a 35mm lens – I really love having them both on me just for being able to shoot the slightest bit wider.


Mona sits on the bank of a lake at the foot of Mount Snowden in North Wales


Mist moving down the side of Mount Snowden


A calm lake at the bottom of Mount Snowden

Soon after our trip to North Wales Mona joined me and my family on a trip back to Wales to visit Tredegar House, moving onto Castle Coch.

I’ve been trying to capture a shot like this for a long time. Superia, while great, didn’t exactly get me what I was after. I tried again with Portra and definitely achieved what I wanted.


Light shining into the dinning room at Castle Coch


I should of stole this jacket while I had the chance


Branches silhouetted in the sky


Mona stands on a trail lined with trees


Public transport in Bristol


The Little Theatre, Bath. Built 1935


A woman poses for a picture with a pigeon street performer in Bath

I am pretty proud of this next picture. It’s really the first time i’ve featured real people and exposed myself as a photographer. I like the concept of street photography but lack the confidence to be seen being a photographer.

(If this man turned his head and looked at me i’d of ran away so fast!) 


A man reads the newspaper in a Café in Jersey

I’ve already started on my next roll of film, i’m actually just pretty late on posted this highlight. (sorry). I started studying at University at the start of September and with my studies I have the option to join societies. Societies which focus on photography and supply access to a darkroom and FREE DARKROOM SUPPLIES…for black and white. In light of this I picked up some Kodak Tri-x 400 with the intension to push it two stops to 1600.

I’m really excited to see how it turns out and especially to be involved in the whole development process!


Roll by Roll: Highlights from my third roll

I actually finished my second roll of film while still holidaying in St. Ives, not wanting to miss any great photo opportunities I checked out a local camera shop to restock the ol’ shooter.

I wanted to change it up a bit, I’ve shot a lot of Superia 400 at this point, not that I dislike it of course! The shop had a pretty decent selection – the majority of my research into different films centres around looking at the hashtag Instagram, for example: Superia 400. I find it really helpful to see how and what kinda situations the film is, and can be used.

I was torn between Ektar 100 and Superia 200, ultimately I went with the Superia 200 – I know this isn’t much of a change from Superia 400 but it was a safer choice as I was quite tight on funds! #staybrokeshootfilm

Anyway, I didn’t actually end up shooting anything else after the first film while in St. Ives so when I got back I had a whole roll to play with! I had a few things in mind that I’d wanted to try for a while, I gained a lot of inspiration through finding some great photographers on Instagram.

Cheap date #35mm

A photo posted by Erica Snyder (@snyder.erica) on Aug 2, 2016 at 1:00pm PDT

Erica Snyder’s shots in low light, featuring beautifully captured neon signs and coloured lighting really made me want to head out in the dark with my camera hunting for any sources of neon light I could find. I did manage to find some, however I might have to look a litter harder to start taking shots of the same calibre as Erica.

Cabot Circus Car Park at Night
Walk Way at Night
Coffee & brunch
Burgers and Beers

I feel that minimilism and film photography lead themselves to eachother so well. There are a whole lot of photographers I could feature here as my inspiration but by far @joanapol has been the most inspirational.

#analog #filmisnotdead #ifyouleave #oftheafternoon

A photo posted by Joana Polonia (@joanapol) on Jul 30, 2016 at 7:40am PDT


I wanted to head out and constantly look for lines, in architecture, nature and designs. See how I could shoot shots differently to how I normally would to leave more dead-space. As well as minimalism, shooting street scenes and the everyday.

Lunch at the Tuk Tuck
An empty Saint Nicolas’s Market




Meal at The Pig

I may not of completely nailed all the aesthetics with this roll but I think have the art is thinking the right way, which I feel I’m starting to grasp.

The last thing I really wanted to achieve with the roll was another double exposure…intentionally this time!


So here I 100% tried to take a double exposure! I wanted the silhouette of College Green Cathedral, filled with the basket of flowers in the surrounding garden. The added exposure of Mona and Danishia on top of Dundry Hill watching the Bristol Balloon Fiesta was not intended! Cool none the less but one day I’ll get it right!

That’s it for my favourite shots of the roll, I finished of the roll on a walk up Crooks Peak where we found some wild horses standing around the top happy to pose for pictures. While attempting to rewind my roll of film I opened the back of the camera and exposed some of the film to daylight…AGAIN. Undeniably a mistake I did end up with some cool effects, but I know there are some great shots I lost.



Roll by Roll: Highlights from my second film

My second roll of Superia 400 started on a trip to Lyme Regis and ended on a holiday in St. Ives a week or so later. I have mixed feelings about this roll as a whole. I’ll start with highlighting my favourite shots:


What I would call a pretty generic picture, but regardless the colours are still amazing and I have a cool lens flare in the top left. The composition could be a little better but it can be easily cropped.


Minimalism is simplicity, simplicity is love.


Nice colours and I like the composition I got here. Could I have made the windows look better with the polarizer I just found in my camera bag?


My beautiful constant model.


Abbey Road in Polperro. Film seems to capture people and lively scenes so well!


I took a lot of pictures of the coast line in St. Ives, this is my favourite of the selection even though I feel the exposure and framing are slightly off.

That concludes my favourites from the roll, here are the out-of-focus, over-exposed left overs!

Roll By Roll: Canon Bristol Instameet

To say I was chucked into the deep end for my first ever roll of film is quite the understatement!

I was lucky enough to be a +1 to someone who was invited to Canon’s Instagram meet in Bristol this weekend. Being the anti-establishment, super cool king of edginess I am I decided that rather than borrowing one of the modern era cameras they had available I’d show up with my AE-1 and fill out another roll of film.


The meet started at the M-Shed, giving me this amazing view of the harbour and the rest of Bristol behind it. The double exposure was not by choice but it came out really well placing Mona in the heart of Bristol!


Soon after we walked to Bristol’s oldest theatre, The Bristol Old Vic, we were shown around the new, underdevelopment bar area. I don’t know what I was going for with this crop, I feel a step backward would have got me the whole sofa and picture frame in the shot nicely. The image in the picture frame was blurry in real life, however some corrections to my settings would have captured the areas behind the sofas clearer for a better image overall.

This is also where I realised I might be in trouble as the rooms got darker and darker!



And then complete darkness!

As we got into the stands the cast of King Lear were doing a rehearsal which we were allowed to watch, and photograph, for a while.

I had absolutely no idea how these pictures would come out, I believe I was shooting at around 1/30 and hoping for the best. This is my favourite shot from the King Lear sequence, I really like the silhouette in front of the stage and the pose of the girl in the back line. For comparison here are the others I took in the stand.



Thanks for letting us watch!




From the Old Vic were hopped on a private bus which then drove us to the next destination. It definitely turned a lot of heads! I couldn’t fit the image I wanted to get landscape so adjusted and shot vertically, however I do prefer the line of people in the landscape shot I feel the vertical shot is better overall.


Here I am getting fancy people-catching. Third is by far one of my favourite pictures ever taken – I love the depth of field here and the reflections on the roof of the bus.


The next stop was a pyrotechnics show by Cirque Bijou! There wasn’t really anyway I was going to be able to capture what was going on well enough on my film – I gave it a go and got pretty much what I expected I would.


We ended the meet at The Forge, Bristol. It was a pretty little room which soon was full of people and giant camera lenses, becoming impossible to take any kind of authentic picture. Oh well. I don’t like the crop here at all and I think I was pretty much exhausted of being around so many people and it started showing in the pictures I was taking.

The day overall was very enjoyable and I got to meet a ton of new people! Thanks again to Canon for organising everything, you’re the best!

I do want this series to be very analytical, and include every frame. The keen-eyed will notice there are not 36 pictures above this point! The rest are at the bottom of the post

The remaining frames were taken at the gig I went to a few days later, again dark settings but the pictures came out cool.


That concludes my second roll of film. I have really struggled with getting things in focus, I find the recital on the ae-1 quite difficult, you can see in the gig pictures that some shots are just completely out of focus. I think I’ll get better with it after a bit more use – I also need to spend a bit more time checking my compositions. On a lot of the shots I feel a few minor adjustments would have made the whole image better.

On to the next roll!

(the extras)




Roll by Roll: Film is not dead

Roll by Roll: Film is not dead

Film is not something I’ve touched since my first year of college – I took AS Photography having no idea I’d have to buy a film camera, film, photo paper and be shoved into a dark room! I shot one roll of film, enough to tick the boxes to finish all my work for the course, put my camera away and haven’t picked it up for six years. (Fun fact: I completely failed this course hahahaha!)

Fast-forward to the present and I’m way more involved with Photography and all the while my old film camera has been in the back of my mind. With a big resurgence for film photography on social media like Instagram, using hashtags like #filmisnotdead, the more pretentious #buyfilmnotmegapixels and the hilariously true #staybrokeshootfilm, the constant exposure convinced me to dig out my camera, set it up and start filling up rolls!

The camera I had originally got for my college course was the Canon AE-1, I’ve ordered a three pack of Superia 400. I’m going to be blogging about the results, lessons learned and experiences as I complete each roll of film here from now on and as for as long as I can afford to continue!


Mandolin Orange

Mandolin Orange


Mandolin Orange are Andrew Marlin and Emily Frantz. A Guitar, Mandolin and Fiddle all switch hands between songs. Andrews comfortingly solemn voice and Emily’s beautiful highs harmonise to create a wonderfully varied, unique sound. With their first show in Bristol only a few months ago they returned to Bristol to play The Tunnels on the 9th of May – bringing Josh Oliver with them to open the show.

As Andrew & Emily took to the stage at the end of the long dark tunnel, all lights focused on them. The audience transfixed, lost in the winding lyrical scans and beautiful instrumental accompaniments. Between songs they were charmingly American hosts, polite and modest to the soul. They made light of the 95% humidity playing hell with their instruments with insightful explanations and stories.

Playing a good mix of old and new, There Was A Time, Old Ties and Companions, Cavalry and Daylight to name a few. For any Folk rooted band, taking on any song by Bob Dylan and making it their own is no easy task. They introduced Boots of Spanish Leather as “A long one” to massive applause, with Fiddle, Guitar and a male and female vocal taking on the respective roles within the lyrics, the song takes on a whole new light which fits their image like a tailored suit. The set closed with Josh Oliver joining them back on stage.

Teasing new material in the set we can hope to see a new release from Mandolin Orange soon and that they aren’t strangers to Bristol when they do.