Illuminating

20:30 on a late July evening, two photos only moments apart. Mary sat with her back to the setting sun; the numbers on the meter weren’t great! There was just enough light for one shot, before a compulsory move to the other side of the table. Now sat facing a rapidly setting sun the golden rays transformed the scene and at least gave me the light I needed.

There are many reasons why I like film anticipation is one. Between shooting and seeing the result my imagination has time to reflect on what might have been captured. In the days that pass while the film is at the lab I usually forget the details and as is often the case (but not always) it’s a pleasant surprise to see the results a couple of weeks later.

I have tried to build some sense of anticipation when I use my DSLR by not looking at the LCD screen, it may seem counter intuitive, after all being able to check as you go along should be a good thing? But by resisting this temptation I learnt an even better thing. For me, constantly looking at the back of a camera is a habit that interferes with rhythm and distracts the connection between my subject and I. But worst than that ‘Chimping' undermines my own photographic instinct, it’s better to trust my own sense than a small screen, and in the end if I ever have a doubt I just look at my film negatives.

All photographed with Hasselblad 500c/m on Kodak Portra 400 film.