Drowning, but waving

I’ve always wanted to take pictures underwater, ever since I learned to snorkel. I had no idea at the time how pictures were made, but I’d seen Jacques Cousteau and it didn’t look that hard. Continue reading “Drowning, but waving”

Late developer

I started developing my own film when I realised that the lab I worked in used to serve the works’ photographer – remember when companies would have one of those? He left behind a load of chemicals in the stores that we had no use for in the routine QA tests we did. So I made a batch of D76.

The opportunity came when my friend’s sister took part in a point-to-point race. For anyone thinking she was a jogger, this is cross-country horse racing and seems to be one of the most dangerous sports you can do (other than running while black in America). I had my first SLR, its 50mm lens, a x2 teleconverter and a few rolls of HP5. Being England, it was overcast. So I pushed the HP5 and stood close enough to the jumps to fill the frame as the horse and rider came over them. This was also before health and safety had been invented. Continue reading “Late developer”


Does anyone remember Jimmy Nail advertising Kodak film on TV? Would anyone believe that colour print film was a big enough competitive market to be worth advertising? Will it come back?

Like a lot of people who predate the smartphone, I started out on film. It wasn’t being worthy and I wasn’t a hipster: film was what made photographs. If I started now I would surely have begun with digital.

Film came in little boxes and many types, with strange names. You could buy film from a camera shop or a chemists, but it was like buying condoms: you wanted to appear like you knew what you were doing. I would learn the name of a film from a magazine then ask for one roll in the shop. I’d gulp at the price, keep a straight face and rush out to play. Continue reading “Fillum”