35mm · Film photography · Photography

People in a gallery

I visited HIP Fest at the weekend – Hull International Photography Festival. This is the third year I’ve visited and there are always interesting things to see, both in the exhibition spaces and also in Hull itself.

The photos in today’s post were taken as I was browsing the work of Claire Armitage, who has a series of self-portraits on display in the main atrium area of the shopping centre where most of the exhibitions are placed. I quite liked the framing of the photos on display and people walking past the white wall in the background, so took a few shots.

While I don’t dislike these images – the first one is my favourite – I really should have been patient and waited for further opportunities as the second shot would have been better taken a second earlier, and the woman in the last one is ever-so-slightly out of focus. Alas, I only had a few hours to spare and felt the need to hurry to cram in the other things I wanted to do while there.

This was also the first time I’ve ever pushed film. While Silverfast seemed to want to overexpose all the scans (I got better results using the Pan F 50 setting than HP5+), the one’s I’ve scanned so far have come out pretty well, and the faster shutter speeds that I was able to use were very useful when shooting indoors or in the dark and overcast conditions outside.

FILM - Man with large bag in gallery

FILM - Two women in gallery

FILM - Woman in gallery

Olympus OM-1, F.Zuiko 50mm f/1.8 & Ilford HP5+ (pushed to 800asa).

Taken on 19 October 2019

Film photography · Medium Format · Photography

A couple of pubs

A bit of a dip into the archive for today’s post. I present here a couple of photographs of pubs in Sheffield. They are from a series of images I made that were going to form the basis of a project I was working on. The project kinda fizzled out, but I have a roll or two of images that I shot for it that I’ve not really done much with (although at least a couple of others have appeared in the blog at various points).

The two photos were taken almost two years ago on a wander around Sheffield city centre on a Sunday, and I’ve chosen these two as they feature the same subject matter – public houses. Despite the seemingly never-ending set of pub closures that is befalling the UK, city centres seem to be less affected, and there are still a wide ranges of places still open and thriving. Although these photos were taken two years ago, both of these pubs are still in business as far as I know, and the areas in which they stand are undergoing a lot of renewal (from old, small industrial units, to new businesses, university facilities and residential conversions). If such a time comes when they are no longer trading, then I’m glad I have these documentary pictures.

FILM - Rutland Arms

FILM - Lord Nelson

Zeiss Mess-Ikonta 524/16 & Fomapan 100.

Taken on 12 November 2017

Film photography · Medium Format · Photography

Expired Ektachrome in my Holga

I was recently fortunate enought to receive several rolls of free film from a kind person on a photography forum I frequent. All the rolls are expired, but that’s never stopped me before.

As well as some Tmax 400 that expired in 2018 (so, basically fresh), the film is mostly transparency, with a number of rolls of Provia, Velvia and Ektachrome. The Fuji stuff expired in 2014, so I’m hoping that that will be in decent condition, but the Ektachrome is dated 2003. With the age of the Ektachrome in mind, I decided to shoot a test roll through my Holga, thinking that, even if the colours were a bit whacky, I could pass the results off as “Holga” photos.

The results are not too bad considering the age of the film and its largely undocumented provenance. The transparencies have a strong purple cast, but colour correction in Epson Scan did a pretty decent job of removing that. There’s still notable purple / red speckling in the shadow areas, and the backing paper is showing in a few frames, but overall the results aren’t awful – not a film I’d want to use for an unrepeatable event or anything, but fine for a freeby and a bit of experimentation.

Anyway, here are a few shots from the roll. I doubt there’ll be any awards winging my way, but for what they are they’re fine.

FILM - De-misting

FILM - Morning coffee

FILM - FedEx

FILM - Drakes

FILM - In the sunlight

Holga 120N & Kodak Ektachrome E100S (expired 2003).

Taken on 24 October 2019

35mm · Film photography · Photography

Sir John Betjeman

This statue of Sir John Betjeman stands in St Pancras railway station, London. He was Poet Laureate from 1972 until his death in 1984. As well as a lover of railways, he was a vociferous voice in the preservation of ancient buildings and was instrumental in the saving of the St. Pancras station and hotel which had been scheduled for demolition. The station was secured and is now the London terminus for both the Midland Mainline domestic route as well as the international Eurostar service to continental Europe. This sculpture was commisioned for the re-opening of the station following its redevelopment in 2007.

You can watch him talk about railways in this film.

FILM - Sir John Betjeman

Olympus OM-1, F.Zuiko 50mm f/1.8 & Ilford HP5+.

Taken on 9 October 2019

Film photography · Medium Format · Photography

Golden balloon

Back in August I visited Renishaw Hall, a local stately home. The main reason for my visit was to take some photographs in the Italianate gardens for a photo comp I’m involved with. My photo did pretty badly, as it turned out, so from that point of view the visit (and £8 entrance fee) was a bit of a waste of time, but I still enjoyed the day and it might be nice to visit again when the autumn colours are in better evidence.

Anyway, I took some other photos during the visit, including shooting half a roll of Ektar. For some reason, several of the Ektar shots are very contrasty with little shadow detail – looking almost like underexposed slide film – but some came out ok, including this one.

FILM - Golden chairs Golden balloon

Zeiss Mess-Ikonta 524/16 & Kodak Ektar.

Taken on 26 August 2019

35mm · Film photography · Photography

Faces in the trees

When new commercial developments are built in Sheffield there is often a requirement for them to install a piece of art somewhere on the site. These can often be seen at shopping centres and suchlike. I suspect that this sequence of metal faces is a similar thing, probably installed when the nearby housing development was added. Or I could be completely wrong.

Whatever the case, it’s an unusual and striking thing to come across, it being tucked away on a footpath behind the houses close to the back of a nearby supermarket.

A piece of debris on the rightmost face gives the illusion of a teardrop.

FILM - Teardrop

Pentax Espio 140m & Ilford HP5+.

Taken on 22 September 2019

35mm · Film photography · Photography


I guess today’s picture serves as a direct sequel to the one I posted yesterday, given that the two people on the foreground bench appear to be the same couple who were walking through the scene in the other photograph. This wasn’t intentional and I only realised it to be the case after scanning the negatives. but I quite like how it turned out though.

I’ve not photographed the Barbican Centre much before, but it’s a wonderful urban location. Amazing brutalist architecture that is very well maintained and with a wealth of compositional possibilities. I only had a spare 10 minutes to take some photos while passing, but I could happily spend hours there.

FILM - Barbican bench land

Olympus OM-1, F.Zuiko 50mm f/1.8 & Ilford HP5+.

Taken on 9 October 2019

35mm · Film photography · Photography

Three’s a crowd

I have to say that I’m very happy to have my Olympus OM-1 back from its repair. I’d not used it for a while and it had developed a shutter issue. The repair cost me around the same as it would have done to buy a new OM-1 body from a reputable dealer, but this is my OM-1, and it’s worth the money to keep it in good working order. It’s probably my favourite 35mm camera, and while I’m still not too keen on the shutter speed selector being on the lens mount (which I find a bit fiddly), it’s otherwise a very satisfying piece of kit to use. It also looks gorgeous – a proper camera if ever there was!

I loaded it with a roll of HP5+ and shot half in Sheffield, and the other half in London (while travelling between the railway station and the meeting venue). This is one of the Sheffield photos.

FILM - Two's company

Olympus OM-1, Zuiko 28mm f/3.5 & Ilford HP5+.

Taken on 6 October 2019