Film Photography and Video Games

I love video games. I don’t write about them here obviously but I’d say I love playing as much as taking pictures. Usually they compete for those bits of free time I get, and there’s no way I could do both at the same time. Unless I start taking photos in games, which is a thing of beauty on its own if you know how to do it properly, and I don’t. Moreover, my photography is mostly film and one would argue there’s no way you can both shoot film and play games.

Well, that someone hasn’t seen the Continuos City project by Gareth Damian Martin. I stumbled on an article about it at Kotaku UK and was blown away.

Continue reading “Film Photography and Video Games”

Street Frames

One of my new year resolutions this year was to start printing my photos and I’ve done it as described here.

But somewhere in the back of my mind, there was an ambition to make a photo book. And today, after long hours (and days) of selecting, reviewing and putting everything together I’m proud to present the resulting book called “Street Frames”.

It is a collection of my favourite street photos I’ve made since I picked up my first film camera back in 2012. The project I was talking about in my article on Emulsive has also made its way into the book.

Following some good advice from my fellow blogger Yuri, I’m going to use the printed copy as my portfolio and maybe will be able to organize a small exhibition here in my area. For anyone who may also be interested in the book, it’s available through Blurb both in print and PDF.

A minute of vanity

Some time ago I contacted a guy who runs Emulsive.org website asking how I could contribute to the community. All I could think about was to translate an article or write some kind of film review or my impressions of film photography or something like that. Hardly had I expected what will come…

Continue reading – http://bit.ly/2vHhgBi

Red on Blue

Recently I’ve finally started to develop colour film at home. Having bought the chemicals several months ago I couldn’t get it going, you know, I had to make the chemicals from powder concentrates and for that I had to bring water to a certain temperature and in order to do that I had to warm water… ugh. Sometimes I felt too lazy to bother or just couldn’t find time.

Anyway, the chemicals are now ready and I’ll develop all my colour film accumulated last and this year little by little. Meanwhile, I really enjoy the results.

Seen above is one of the pictures I took at the swimming pool last summer and the way it came out reminds me once again why I love film. Shot on expired Fuji film plus almost a year of waiting for development, the picture has these dominant colors of red and blue which makes it either kind of cross process-y or somewhat impressionist.

New Year’s announcement

The sign above says: “Let’s make the world a better place”.
Lubitel 166, Kodak Portra 400VC

As I’ve obviously missed the time for any looking back posts for the year 2016 (maybe it’s for the best, considering all the negative things), I’d like to jump on a New Year resolutions train. In fact, it’s more than simply a promise, it is an announcement of sorts.

First, a little bit of background. I don’t remember if I ever shared here the fact that I’m a teacher of English by profession. And for quite a long time last year I’ve been thinking if there is any way to combine two of my passions, to English and to photography. Here is what I came up with.

As a personal challenge and a way of being useful to photo community, I’ve decided to start creating learning materials aimed at photographers. I believe there are photogs, both amateurs and professionals, who would like to improve their English, and by making English materials with photography in mind I keep them relevant to those people. Do you travel a lot and need to communicate with people? Do you want to expand your reach to the audience abroad? Or are you looking for foreign contractors? These are cases I want to tackle when posting lessons and materials for this project.

Anyway, as I said, it is a challenge too. To see if it is even possible to pursue this path and keep up the good level of content, and to see if I’m fit for it.

This project was simply called Photo English Lessons and will be separate from this blog.

But I would like to take a moment here and encourage you to check out the project’s website, leave feedback here or there, and share it with those who in your opinion could benefit from it. I’d also like to ask you to subscribe to that website as well in order to receive updates. I promise it won’t be too often, once or twice a week. Three times tops, but I’m realistic about my time. Creating learning materials takes time after all.

Whether you decide to be a part of my experiment or not, I want to thank you for joining me in my photo journey in 2016 and I hope we’ll stay this way in 2017. It’s gonna be fun.

As one great photographer said: “To infinity and beyond!”

Cheers!

I’ve got a feeling

alley

Unrelated to any challenges or projects I just wanted to show this photo and share some of my feeling about it.

This woman on the right, walking away with a baby carrier, is my wife, and this was the reason why I made this photo. Another reason was to test either a Zenit camera (Zenit B it was I guess) or Helios lens or to try out Portra film or everything combined. Actually, it doesn’t matter.

The things is, every time I look at the picture I feel like I’m looking at a 3D miniature model of a real life situation. You know, like when you look at a scale model of a city in a museum.

Maybe it is because of its shallow depth of field effect or maybe it’s something else, but from all of my film photos only this one makes such an impression. It feels so real to the point of being creepy even.

What do you think? How do you feel about it?

At the exhibition

Nikon F3, Nikkor 35-70mm, Fuji Superia 400 (expired)
Nikon F3, Nikkor 35-70mm, Fuji Superia 400 (expired)

Let me frame it for you:

1.

Earlier this week I read this wonderful post about one of my favourite street photographers Matt Stuart. There is also a video with him talking about some of his photos and the way he works. Strangely enough, only now I’ve realized that I’ve never googled any videos with him myself, but anyway.

Matt Stuart had a huge influence on me at the time I started. Even now looking at his works I feel this urge to grab my camera and get out there to shoot some great street pics. Just like his! I guess his ability to see paradox, irony, and humour in our ordinary life resonates with what I like about surroundings, and what I’d like to see in my pictures.

This one above was taken in Riga, Latvia near the railroad station. There was some kind of open-air exhibition and I just happened to be there and take some photos. I don’t know about you, but I can see some glimpses of Stuart’s style here, considering doves and legs 😉 or maybe it’s just my emotional bias (probably).

2.

Though I missed the photo challenge last week this one is about frames, which are aplenty in this photo. In all kinds of interpretation.

3.

I just personally like this picture no matter how good or bad it seems to others. Regardless comparisons to masters or haute street photography. And I decided to show it to you.

A sneak peek.

image

This was meant to be a post with a story behind the photo, but it suddenly turned out to be a post with a story about the photo.

I found it in the deepest corner of my instagram and decided to share here. This trivial task failed when I realized that I don’t have a copy of the photo on my phone, and instagram doesn’t allow sharing with other websites. I looked for it further and found the post-processed copy in my vsco online profile, but not in the app. Sharing from the profile is also impossible, so the only way out was to take the original and edit it once again.

After half an hour of scrolling down my Google photos backup back to December 2013 I’ve managed to find it and thus finally bring it here.

The lesson for everyone here is: keep copies of you favourite mobile photos on you phones or backed up, so you don’t have to go through the editing process again.

As for the picture itself, I particularly like the man sitting next to the girls wondering what they are watching.

Clothespins

image

I’ve been looking through my photos choosing candidates to be published in a portfolio and found this one.

This photograph comes from those times when I didn’t have a camera of my own and borrowed my mother-in-law’s Pentax. It’s also far from what I came to shoot later, but nevertheless I love this picture for its colours and sunlight, and summer spirit.

Going further

Until now I posted my photos only to social networks, blogs and communities, but there was no specific site where I could refer people to when they asked me what kind of photos I take.

Now there is such a place. Please welcome my brand new portfolio at ivanpilov.format.com
It’s still work in progress, I continue to upload photos and reorganize them, but you can check it out anyway.

image

Creating a portfolio is a big step for me as I’ve never thought of creating a showcase website before, probably, because I’ve never thought of myself as a photographer in a professional way. You know, cool photographers all have portfolios, they even sell their works there, get contracts etc. I’m just a hobbyist, so why bother? But a good friend of mine persuaded me to create it, and here it is.

The way to do it was also an important issue. Which platform to chose, how much it will cost, should I try create a standalone website myself or choose a ready-to-go solution. I’ve looked at several portfolio platforms and finally found format.

There are two main features I particularly like about it:

  • a simple design (with lots of customization setting under the hood)
  • a blogging part. (That’s honestly what I wanted to make here: one part – for looking at pictures while another is for posting stuff.)

Currently I’m on a 14-days trial and I can still change my mind, but so far everything is wonderful and I really hope I won’t need to.