"When i got it in my hands it hit me, the weight, the sturdiness, it felt real, not like any of my gadgets"
Tell us about yourself.
I'm an 33 years old computational engineer with an MBA in finance, i develop innovative solutions (software+hardware+human resources) for the supply chain of transnational corporations, i'm a techy guy in love with innovative gadgets...
When and how did the film journey begin for you?
As most 80's kids i grew up taking photos with the family 110 kodak camera, it was a normal thing, then the digital wave came and the film camera was replaced and forgotten in a drawer, when i started buying technology i got a digital cam, it was good but just another gadget.
One day i meet a random guy who was using a Canon AE 1, i remember asking him the classical question that now a days annoys me "where do you buy the film for that?!", we chat a while and he handed me the camera, when i got it in my hands it hit me, the weight, the sturdiness, it felt real, not like any of my gadgets, i looked thru the viewfinder and the first thing i saw was a little dancing needle that made me wonder about the degree of engineering process they had to achieve to get that kind of instruments inside a camera...
I got a Canon AE-1 Program and started to use it, after some research i found out that most of the functions where already used since 1950, i was really impressed, that's when i got GAS (gear acquisition syndrome), even though i started buying film cameras because of the tech and history i used them and started to fall in love with film (and also with the chemical science behind it), i started to develop at home and enlarging to close the circle.
What type of film do you usually shoot and what made you choose it?
When i'm looking for film (normally online) i search for "Expirded Film Lot" i don't care if it is color, slide or bw, i must say that in the beginning i shoot only color film because that was the easiest film to get developed by labs, that changed when i started developing, it is a pain to get C41 in México or Colombia so i used mostly BW till i found a guy who made his own chemicals for sale.
I think film is a medium and i have my preferences for each type of photography, for portrait i use really expired color film and black and white, Slide or IR film for landscape and nature, black and white for street...
What camera makes you click?
My favorite gear is: Nikon f3, Nikon f100, Rolleiflex Automat, Bronica etrs,Graflex and Toyoview.
I found that the Bronca ETRS is a very good camera to take with me in most occasions, the F3 or the F100 when i have to carry the digital and the Toyoview when i can relax and meditate while i prepare the shoot.
Between black and white and colour film which would you choose?
Black and white film is versatile, forgiving and convenient to develop at home, you can push and pull a lot and it lasts forever even out the fridge.
What lenses do you use?
When on the streets i like to use a fixed 50mm (75mm for the bronica) this makes me get closer to the subject and is easier to compose and manual focus. For portraits i love nikon's 105mm F2 DC and the 150mm zenzanon for medium format.
Do you make any experiments on film? I like to try new things like shooting instax mini on a 2x3 graflex or develop expired color film on d76, my experiments are mostly mechanical, last month i used the graflex 4x5 as an enlarger, i was very pleased with the results.
Film photographers have an immense responsibility, they take a non exposed roll of film and exposes it, in this very moment the photographer gives the atoms on the emulsion an order to fix in that frame a little piece of time and space so it can transcend