Canonet 28, Film Photography, Lens Artists Photo Challenge, Luminar, Monochrome Monday, Photo Editing, Photography, travel

Go Exploring With Me

I struggled a bit with what title to give this post. It touches on a lot of things all springing from one photo:

This post is about:

  • Film photography, what I do and don’t know.
  • The intersection of film and digital, or at least where I am with that.
  • History and how we chose to display it.
  • A lovely boat ride in the Lake District.

The photo in question is this one:

Taken with a Canonet 28

I’ll start with the Canonet 28 camera I am using. It was originally owned by my Great-Uncle who, according to my memory, owned all kinds of photography equipment and I suspect would have made the foray into digital as well had he lived to see that era. At his passing, this camera went to my Aunt, who a few years ago was kind enough to ship me a box of camera goodies that had belonged to my Great-Uncle. Of all the things in the box, it was this camera that caught my imagination the most.

But did it still work? That was a question that would require a new battery and some film. Jim Grey writes a blog that I follow that covers film photography and he has a post specifically about my camera. Jim’s blog also had some suggestions about film and batteries and generally was a good starting point for me to get the camera going. Also, I googled the camera and was able to track down the original owner’s manual that came with it. This paragraph should give you an idea of how much I do not know about film photography.

Something that I do know is that regardless of what camera, digital or film, that you are using if you are standing on a vibrating boat, a perfectly still image is going to be really hard. So I just embraced that reality, choosing to shoot the also moving flag and just make the image about motion.

The boat in question is actually a Victorian-era steam yacht gondola, that was rebuilt and restored. Operated seasonally by the National Trust, it makes for a lovely cruise in the Lake District. The little history geek that resides within me loves when a tangible piece of history is displayed in this way.

Having captured this image on film and had it developed, I then scanned it to my computer. I do not have a scanner built with photography in mind. Anyway, I edited my scan in Luminar 3. I did not crop the image. That’s part of my process learning to use the viewfinder and lens setup of the camera, figuring out what does and doesn’t work. There are also a few spots and imperfections visible that are a reflection of the imperfections of the camera. I was pleased with how few there were given the age of the camera.

Overall, this was a nice foray into exploring film photography. Since the camera works and I like the feel of it, I will be loading another roll of film in. Film will never take the place of digital for me, the two are vastly different experiences, but I will continue to tinker with film.

This post is a little bit different than most of my others. I’m happy for you to leave a question or comment below.


Added to Lens-Artist Photo Challenge, On Display.


30 thoughts on “Go Exploring With Me

  1. Does the camera have a built in meter, or are you using the Sunny 16 rule? Film is a good way to back to basics. I think you’ll enjoy it. I love the vintage feel your photo has because it was taken on film. Maybe call it, Rule Brittania? ๐Ÿ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    • This camera is fairly automatic, or at least that’s what I have gone with to start with. The way the focus works has been a learning curve as well as the framing based on what I am seeing in the viewfinder. Both are things that I just need to adapt too. I’m hoping that this project will help me think a bit more critically about my digital work. The yacht was built in 1859, Rule Brittania would work as a title for this photo.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. What a fun experiment Amy. I used to shoot film with my Nikon FM many many years ago. It was a beautiful little camera, still respected as a classic among film photographers. I still have it along with the lenses but have never been tempted to use it. Film is expensive and it’s hard to find developers. I no longer have a darkroom and have no intention of making one! But I know exactly what you mean about the feel of a film camera – there’s just something about it, isn’t there? I won’t mention how crazy you were to make your first test on a moving boat! You did well!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, well Tina, I guess if I’m going to make a leap I might as well make it a crazy one ๐Ÿ™‚ I took a photo of that flag on my two other cameras as well, it was just that compelling to me. Also, as “insurance” so to speak in case this ended up going badly. I hear you on not going back to film, honestly, I can see this just being something I do now and then, there are just so many things I love about digital that I don’t see giving that up.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Very cool photo! I like the vintage look – using film and finding a place to have it developed is challenging. I have all my film negatives going back decades and (if stored properly) they scan fairly well. What fun to use an old camera that was in your family. I look forward to seeing what you come up with next.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Film! How wonderful! I too would love to dabble in it… but digital is my favorite.
    My sister in law uses old and new cameras. Even the ones that her father used standing up with a curtain over his head. She has a dark room as well and develops her own shots. But she uses Digital too for quick shots.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Great story, my opinion on being handed any old film camera is to wonder if it still works and can I put a roll of film through it..๐Ÿ˜‚ Itโ€™s the wonderful leap into the unknown where youโ€™ve got no idea what, if anything, is going to be on the roll when itโ€™s processed. Iโ€™ve got the advantage of being ancient enough to have started with a manual film camera (still got it, still works fine forty years later) so Iโ€™m okay with using them

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Such a great and successful experiment. How fab that you were able to use your Great-Uncle’s camera, he would certainly be proud of your efforts. I love the vintage feel of the photo and you have indeed captured the flag’s movement very well. I hope you will have many further opportunities to use this camera. Merry Christmas and a happy, healthy 2020 ๐Ÿ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I love the story and the picture evokes memories of boat rides in the lake district as a child. The blurring on the end of the flag makes the components of the flag pop out. Its a long time since I used film and admire your experiment

    Liked by 1 person

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