5 Frames With Nikon FM2 and Ilford FP4+ – By Hans Gustafson

By Hans Gustafsson

As  spring turns to summer, and the warm wind caresses your skin, the air fills with smell of fresh flowers and exhaust fumes. The car enthusiasts have awakened and if you only spend a short while by the side of a [any] road, you can see a wide variety of vehicles. Sometimes they gather in a field, for a “car meet”. Side-by-side you will find american muscle cars and mopeds, street legal race cars and family saloons. All just getting along and frolicking in the sun. This is the perfect opportunity to get those rare close-ups and candids.

Cheesy analogs aside, a couple of weeks ago my fiancé reminded me that the local annual car meet that had been postponed the last couple of pandemic years was happening again and suggested I go. Not because I’m particularly interested in motor vehicles, quite the opposite actually, but because of said photo opportunity. All said and done, I packed my trusty LowePro AW with a Nikon D500, an FM2n with Ilford FP4+ and an F3 with Velvia 50. Lenses were Tamron SP 24-70/2.8 G2, Nikkor MF 35-70/3.3-4.5 and Nikkor MF 50/1.8 “Longnose”. The next day I set out to the local airfield.

When I had close to 200 files on the memory card and the Velvia 50 was rewound, I switched to the FM2 and FP4+. I was getting a bit tired from a day out in the blistering sun and a feeling that I had taken all the photos I had imagined, it actually became somewhat of a challenge to find new angles and motives although there were hundreds of cars there. It was hard because the one thing I really wanted to photograph was people. And there were none. At least no “characters” as it were. Everybody just looked so mundane, like your next door neighbour. A bit boring.

So “thinking” in black and white was refreshing. I didn’t fill the roll with extraordinary images but I got some keepers and had to kill a lot of darlings for this 5 Frames-piece.

I find it hard to photograph just cars, I just can’t connect with the subject. I have to have something else in the picture that either puts the car in a context or go closer and get details. Details that tell a story or lets the viewer find his own story.

Anyhow, these are five of the frames from the roll, they were all taken with a yellow filter. Scanning was done with Plustek OpticFilm 8200i with only minor adjustments in Lightroom. For the more colorful digital images, check out the blogpost on my homepage (in Swedish).

A picture of a Dodge Charger emblem A picture of people beside a Ford Mustang A picture of the interior of an american car A picture of a carmeet with lots of cars A picture of men in a fleamarket

Find me on Instagram
My homepage  (In Swedish only)

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About The Author

By Hans Gustafsson
Photographing since 1977, breathing the fresh air of northern Sweden. Chasing birds with long digital glass, but gets nostalgic about manual film photography and the smells of a darkroom.
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Michael J on 5 Frames With Nikon FM2 and Ilford FP4+ – By Hans Gustafson

Comment posted: 12/07/2022

Lovely pics... it's a shame the cars are so shiny as it's sunlight-on-dust-on-car-paintwork that seems to get the ethereal glow that I rather like. Is this what you'd call a meeting of 'raggare' or is this kind of meeting more polite than that would suggest? I only have the frame of reference of the lyrics of a Norwegian punk band with a rather distasteful name...

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Hans Gustafsson replied:

Comment posted: 12/07/2022

Haha, no this is more of a show of enthusiast cars. Show off your build, buy and sell car parts/related items and meet like-minded. There were however a street cruising later that night... :)


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