Author name: shawn granton

Shawn Granton is an artist who has been exploring the area around Portland, Oregon over the last 20 years. He takes most of his photos while riding his bike around town or on a bike tour. Catch more of him on the internet here.

5 frames of low-light photography with an Olympus XA2 – by Shawn Granton

When people think about night or low light film photography, I imagine they picture SLRs, TLRs, or large-format cameras, tripods, cable releases, and oh yes, a light meter. That’s all well and good. But sometimes you want to do a low light shot and you’re out and about without fancy gear–you just have your humble pocket camera with you. Can you get a decent low light photo with just that?

Fuji Discovery 875 Zoom Plus: Attention Kmart Shoppers, or a Discount Department Store Photographic History – by Shawn Granton

Here’s a story down memory lane, triggered by a camera acquisition. The Fuji Discovery 875 Zoom Plus is pretty forgotten today, but it relates to a moment in my former life.

It’s hard to fathom now, but there was a time where Kmart was ubiquitous. No matter what part of the United States you went to, there’d be a Kmart somewhere. Founded in 1962, the chain popularized the concept of the discount department store–a well-rounded set of self service departments from clothing to garden supplies to housewares and so on, and everything priced lower than you’d find in a regular department store or mom and pop shop. At its peak Kmart had 2,400 stores. Now? Last I checked, the once mighty retailer (second behind Sears for much of the latter part of the 20th Century) is barely hanging on, having just 17–seventeen!–stores left. What was once part of the cultural fabric of America is barely a shell of its former self.

Samsung Slim Zoom 1150 Review: Good Results, Frustrating Experience – by Shawn Granton

I haven’t given much thought to the idea of Korean film cameras. Electronics, sure. Cars, OK. But cameras? I’m guessing there was some kind of domestic camera industry in South Korea sometime before the 1980s, when South Korean brands became noticeable in the US. But I can’t find much on the English web. Any time I try to search for “vintage Korean film camera” I get links to phone apps, articles about cameras made out of paper or candy, or a Korean cafe built to resemble a Rolleiflex TLR. (Which admittedly sounds pretty cool.)

Pentax IQZoom 928 Review – My Superzoom of Choice – By Shawn Granton

When I dove back into film photography in the winter of 2020, I aimed for manual and mechanical cameras. If I was going to embrace this analog medium, I wanted the most analog experience possible. I’d tolerate a meter, but nothing more. I was definitely not interested in those compact point-and-shoot cameras that dominated film’s last decade of primacy. These were the cameras that I stared at when I was the Electronics department manager of a suburban Connecticut Kmart in the later 90s. If I couldn’t generate enthusiasm about buying one then, why would I now?

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