When I first started shooting film it was as a side project, a hobby and as a way to explore the analog side of photography – around which such mysticism and cult exists. I experimented with different formats and films and decided that I wanted my film images to be very different to my usual work, whether that was my commercial style or street/photojournalism. I write a lot both on my own blog and for other publications, and document my approach and philosophy and gear, but I rarely discuss the artists that inspired me to try certain things out with gear, film stocks, and techniques.
I wanted my film work to emphasise humanity in a way that my distant and isolated work with long lenses on digital cameras was rarely able to capture, and part of this is because that is the theme most evident in my favourite photographers who use film as their main medium for visual storytelling. It is not only their use of film, but also of discreet often compact cameras to work quickly and with precision in many different scenarios.
All of these artists have such a deep understanding and application of film as a medium and are able to create consistent images in their own distinct style – no two photographers work from this list looks remotely alike, despite sometimes sharing similar chemicals and processing.
I hope that you find these photographers to be as interesting and inspiring as I do; and hopefully I’ll introduce you to artists you hadn’t heard of before!
Hengki Koentjoro: www.hengki-koentjoro.com
These are mostly slide film, black and white landscape art. Although I’m not a landscape photographer I really appreciate the time and effort that’s gone into exposing each of these, resulting in subtle contrast and shadow detail.
Walter Rothwell: www.walterrothwell.com
Walter is one of my favourite photographers overall, between his emotive fast paced scenes and tranquil, almost sombre, images he is a master of composing everything around a single moment. Also some of the best applications of the Hasselblad XPan I’ve ever seen.
Josh White: jtinseoul.wordpress.com
Josh has a very clear style that is beautifully consistent between his film and digital work, making it difficult to tell what was produced with what. There is a sense of timelessness in all of his work.
Liam Furneaux & Chloe Orefice: www.liamfurneaux.co.uk & www.instagram.com/chloe_orefice/
These two photographers I met at different fashion events while shooting at London Fashion Week. I’m currently working on a long term project involving the XPan at Fashion Week, so it was great seeing the kind of work other film photographers are producing in the same location. Liam works with medium format but has created some fantastic 3D images with the Nikisha which I really like. Chloe’s images are fantastically clear and crisp with bold colour.
Fred Mortagne: www.frenchfred.com
Fred has an excellent grasp of scale and geometry for documenting his skateboarding lifestyle stories. I’m especially impressed with his use of the XPan in fast paced scenarios – I can’t imagine how many rolls he’s been through!
Benjamin Gordon: www.benjamingordon.co
A lot of Benji’s images have a unique contrast, extreme clarity between black and white without being cartoonish as can often happen. This gives his images a sense of iconography and gravity through distinct division between his subjects and their context.
Pedro Terrinha: pedrotphotos.tumblr.com
Pedro’s medium format portraits are the definition of clarity, with fantastic colour and incredible depth both emotionally and technically. I think he scans using the Hubble Telescope, his images are that sharp.
Dave Powell: shoottokyo.com
I love the insight David offers on his blog, to a country and culture I personally love. His images are detailed and often feature fantastically unique characters and stories.
Jeff Bridges: jeffbridges.com
I adore the panoramic work taken by Jeff Bridges on the sets of his films. He uses a widelux for selfies, but because of his own iconography his work is special, and offers unique insight into his life and industry.