I only started shooting film seriously in 2015, with my film-only Project 365, so rewind five years and what we find is a fairly naïve DSLR shooter who had two automatic film cameras for posing on Instagram with creative experimentation. So it was that in February of 2014 I embarked on my stag weekend (bachelor party, for those of an American disposition), thinking a Lomo LC-A and 200 speed film would be just perfect for a spot of low light, gonzo-style documentary shooting.
A Sunday morning. A tabletop sale. An Olympus camera case catches my eye. It’s about the right size and shape. I sidle over, pick it up. Act casual, act casual. I open it and…it’s not a Mju II. Well, it is, but rather than the oh-so sought after 35mm f/2.8 I was hoping for, I’m looking at the champagne chassis of its zoom-lensed cousin. I reach into my pocket full of assorted camera batteries (no camera hunter should leave home without one) and hear “that’s just a pound, love” from the stall holder. Sold.
So, you’ve decided 2018 is the year you’ll attempt a Project 365 exclusively on film. The first couple of days were no problem, with the holidays providing plenty of time and opportunity to get out there and shoot. But now you’re back at work and, holy crap, are there really only seven hours of proper daylight this time of year? Don’t despair. As film shooters, old digital P365 standbys like heavy Photoshop work and macro shots of household objects aren’t so easy for us. But by thinking ahead, getting organised and not riding your luck too hard, you too can successfully document an entire year of your life on film, one day at a time. I know because I did it in 2015 and it was a transformational experience. I came into the year as someone with a couple of film cameras that I put a roll through every now and then. I ended it with a much deeper understanding of film and exposure, of composition and subject, and as for my camera collection…let’s not get into that. My wife might read this one day.