Matt Loves Cameras, an Australia-based film photography podcast, wrapped its first community zine competition of this year in May and has already opened the next challenge for entries, closing at the end of August 2022.
The Pantastic 2021-22 zine is currently being shipped while the new Xpro challenge is open for submissions of cross-processed images. It is free to enter and you can find the details, rules, and the entry form over on Matt’s website here. While it is a competition in nature, it is also collaborative and each individual will have an image featured in the zine, as selected by the judges.
Broadcasting from Brisbane
Based in Brisbane, Australia, the film photography podcast, blog, and now Youtube channel, Matt Loves Cameras, is run by Matt Murray. Matt started running community zine competitions after publishing his own personal zine called “Every Summer” about holidaying on the Isle of Wight in 2019. Every Summer is available to purchase from Matt’s website here.
The zine competitions are themed and the recently closed Pantastic challenge featured the wonderful world and surprising abilities of plastic focus-free panorama cameras. This was actually the second Pantastic challenge, the original was held back in 2020. It was so popular though that Matt brought it back for Volume 2. I took part in the competition this year and used a Wide-Pic Panorama camera. The camera had to be plastic, fixed-focus, weigh less than 150grams, panoramic, and contain no batteries. It amazed me the images that these cameras are able to produce.
Entries from the Pantastic competition can be viewed on the Matt Loves Cameras website. Judging takes place on the podcast so you can listen and view the images on the website at the same time.
I asked Matt where the idea for community zines started. He said, ‘A couple of events combined to give me the inspiration for the Pantastic challenge. After producing my first film photography zine ‘Every Summer’ shot on holiday on the Isle of Wight in 2019, I was looking to run a competition and community zine.’
‘Just before the trip to the UK, Matthew Joseph [Murray’s friend] had come up to Brisbane and brought both his Xpan and his Hanimex Panorama 35 – a clone of the cult plastic pano Ansco Pix. I found it intriguing that he said sometimes he had to check which images were Xpan and which were cheap plastic pano. On my 2019 trip to the UK I met up with Sunny 16 host Graeme Jago. In the Emulsive Secret Santa that year, Graeme drew my mate Antony Hands in New South Wales. Graeme sent a cheap plastic pano camera as part of the gift. Antony suggested to me that I should run a competition and it all went from there.’
I also asked Matt which dream panoramic camera he would choose between, either the XPAN from Hasselblad or TX-1 from Fujifilm, he said, ‘As a Fujifilm fan boy, I’d go for the TX-1 or TX-2 over the Hasselblad branded cameras.’ Not to say the Wide-Pic wasn’t a dream camera for me!
The Pantastic 2021-22 zine is now shipping in the post, with expected distribution dates of July in Australia and August for the rest of the world.
The XPRO competition will be open until the 31st of August, 2022. Images can be taken with any camera and any film, but the film must be cross-processed. See Matt’s Xpro post with all the details here to enter!
You can find Matt posting and podcasting on his website, but he has also recently started a new photography podcast and Youtube show with fellow photographer and new podcaster Lucy Lumen, also based in Australia. To watch the show, check them out here.
Images kindly provided by Matt and used with permission.
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