Exa 1C - overlapping camera
The Whole Roll

Giving a “Faulty” Camera Another Chance – #FullRollFriday – by Holly Gilman

November 6, 2020

I’m shocked to say that it’s not even been 2 months since my first article was published on 35mmc (at the time of writing this, that is). I think it feels like longer because I have gained so much from being part of this community.

One of the benefits of sharing my work, whether I consider it a success or not, is that it makes me look at said work differently and inspires me to do things that I wouldn’t have thought of. One such instance of this has been the desire to pick up my Exa 1C again.

I shared a roll from this camera and was prompted by so many to give the camera another shot, despite its “flaws”. And, actually, just writing the article got me thinking about trying it again. So, here we are with another roll shot through the Exa 1C.

If you’ve read the previous article you will know that this is a 35mm SLR which has a problem with overlapping images. I hadn’t realised this when shooting it the first time, but it gave the images an unusual twist. Because I hadn’t noticed any problems when shooting it first time around, I made sure to be much more vigilant this time; listening every time I wound on, and being incredibly gentle for each wind.

I could hear the film advance skipping as I wound on and it very bizarrely does this every 3 images. It doesn’t matter how gentle I am in the using the film advance lever, it always skips for 2 and then winds on correctly. This time around I managed to shoot the full roll. Last time something went wrong and it only gave me 12 shots; I can’t be sure whether I happened to notice the skipping and thought I had hit the end of the roll or whether something did actually jam (I suspect the former).

For this I used Foma 100. It’s a film stock I have never shot before, I would have liked to use Ilford HP5 or FP4 as these are film stocks I know much better. Using a film stock I know well may have helped me in my analysis of the negatives but I don’t think it has mattered too much.

And so, here is the full roll of images. I really love hearing which images other people like and why, so please, please do comment and let me know.

Exa 1C - overlapping camera

Image 1

Exa 1C - overlapping camera

Image 2

Exa 1C - overlapping camera

Image 3

Exa 1C - overlapping camera

Image 4

Exa 1C - overlapping camera

Image 5

The above, of the church is one of my favourites.

Exa 1C - overlapping camera

Image 6

Exa 1C - overlapping camera

Image 7

Exa 1C - overlapping camera

Image 8

Exa 1C - overlapping camera

Image 9

I really like the one above because I took the photo and then turned around and took the photo of my friend photographing the same building.

Exa 1C - overlapping camera

Image 10

Exa 1C - overlapping camera

Image 11

Another favourite from this roll. I knew I was in an overlapping section so I took a few shots of the same building from different views.

Exa 1C - overlapping camera

Image 12

Exa 1C - overlapping camera

Image 13

Exa 1C - overlapping camera

Image 14

Another favourite from the roll. This worked exactly as I had planned, which I didn’t think would be possible given the nature of the camera!

Exa 1C - overlapping camera

Image 15

Exa 1C - overlapping camera

Image 16

Exa 1C - overlapping camera

Image 17

Exa 1C - overlapping camera

Image 18

Exa 1C - overlapping camera

Image 20 – the only one that wasn’t overlapped, at the very end of the roll

Finally, I would be incredibly grateful to anyone who would like to help me towards my dream of building a darkroom. I have set up a “buy me a coffee” account and all the funds raised will be put towards the project. I have plans to make some prints of my work available for sale soon as well. You can read about my plans here, and I will be documenting every step of the way. I am also gratefully accepting any advice or even unused equipment should anyone have anything they wish to pass on!

If you like my work you can see more of it on my learning log and Instagram. Thank you!

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13 Comments

  • Reply
    Kevin Ortner
    November 6, 2020 at 8:05 pm

    I do recall seeing the original post you had and thought that it was an interesting flaw that could exploited. What I really like about your full roll is that you can almost see when you recognized the winding pattern and used it to create 3 overlapping images into 1. I’d say up to about image 8 you were still working it out. And then the remaining have a bit more cohesion.

    It almost looks like you could waste the second shot of each set of 3 (take a picture with lens cap on) and you would get the first and third without any overlapping. Something to consider if there was a scene you didn’t want to overlap.

    Thanks for sharing!

    • Reply
      Holly Gilman
      November 6, 2020 at 8:11 pm

      Thank you! I really like your idea of taking the middle shot with a lens cap on as I believe this would result in most of them being 2 images butted up against each other. There were a couple where the overlap looked a little different but in general it was pretty consistent on that front!

  • Reply
    Tobias Eriksson
    November 7, 2020 at 11:08 am

    I like that you persevere and try to understand the camera’s quirks, and not just retire it. My idea is follow Kevin’s advice but when you feel like triptych-time has arrived try to be more consistent with exposure. From what I can tell numbers one and three in the triptychs should be exposed in the same way and number two should get 1 stop less light for the ‘tychs to be evenly exposed. And try to find a way to soften the transitions between these compositions like not having sky in the corners or along edges.
    Great work!

  • Reply
    Gil Aegerter
    November 8, 2020 at 4:01 pm

    Those images are pretty interesting. You could have a lot of fun withe that camera

    • Reply
      Holly Gilman
      November 8, 2020 at 7:03 pm

      Thank you, yes – it’s nice to have something a little different to work with

  • Reply
    Clive Williams
    November 8, 2020 at 5:11 pm

    Nice stuff, Holly! I still have here my late parents’ 1965 Exa IIb, which at the moment won’t wind on at all. Eye-level rather than waist-level, but it looks as if it ought to have parts in common, so if you do want a go at fixing your 1c and it’s any use to you as a donor machine, you’re very welcome to it.

    • Reply
      Holly Gilman
      November 8, 2020 at 7:05 pm

      Thank you, how kind! I am actually toying with the idea of learning to fix cameras so if you were looking to pass it on it would certainly make good practice!

  • Reply
    Alexander Seidler
    November 8, 2020 at 9:05 pm

    I hope you will not be angry if i say that i dont really understand why you shoot a faulty camera.
    But it is the best #FullRollFriday post i have seen !
    Thanks.

    • Reply
      Holly Gilman
      November 9, 2020 at 6:39 pm

      Thank you and no I don’t. I veer towards more experimental photography and alternative processes I realise that that is not everybodys cup of tea. I’m glad you enjoyed it though!

  • Reply
    Thang Nguyen
    November 8, 2020 at 10:24 pm

    I love image #9 and #14 so much, it’s like a panoramic but everything is distorted like a strange dream.

  • Reply
    Ben Garcia
    November 9, 2020 at 8:03 pm

    Neat stuff! I love/hate the faultiness of old film cameras.
    These came out really well! My favs are 6 and 7.

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