My cousin gifted me a 1970s Canon AE-1 film camera for my birthday several years ago. For the first year and a half, the camera languished in my closet because the thought of handling film was, when compared with the immediacy of my DSLR Canon Rebel T1i, too much trouble. One day I wandered into the photography shop next to my house (sadly, it has since closed shop because the owner retired), bought some film, and went for a walk, taking the AE-1 for a spin.
There is a soft and romantic quality imbued in the photos created by my little AE-1 that a DSLR can’t manage to recreate.
I once blogged profusely– I created content to throw at the Internet as if my life depended on it. Yet over the last two years, that urge waned, and as my day job/career took me down one black hole, I left the world of blogging and photography. Instead, my life became one continuous stretch of commute-work-commute-sleep-repeat. What had once made me happy– photography, writing, reading, wandering the town I live in– was pushed to the side in my drive to succeed at work. Slowly, I became more and more frustrated.
This frustration culminated in a tearful rant to my boyfriend about my life, about happiness, about my life, and about how I no longer did any of the things that made me happy. He urged me to start writing again, to go on those long walks I missed so much, to take photos, to read, and, ultimately, to be happy.
So I am back again.
The top photograph was taken one summer morning at my boyfriend’s house, when the shadows from the trees outside dance across the walls and floors like magical sprites.
The second photograph is a peek of my backyard. We need a gardener.
The final photograph is my mess of a shelf that holds mementos from various points of my life– a nutcracker, photo booth pictures, assorted glass bottles, truffle salt from France, a Tin Tin figurine, oddly shaped rocks from the beach, a chalk pastel set, an Android doll, camera lenses, and old-school cameras. It is a rather apropos representation of my life.
11 thoughts on “Jeanne Begins Again”
I too have found the joys of film once again. I now shoot with my Nikon F (1960) quite a bit. Isn’t it wonderful shooting film?! Slow and deliberate. 🙂
It IS wonderful. I’ve become completely addicted to it. The soft quality of film is just so different from the crisp quality of digital. I love both, but film’s got a special spot in my heart. In fact, the guys at my local photo development shop recognize me when I walk in. 🙂 (The first place I’ve ever become a recognized regular, and it’s a photo dev place. :D)
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That’s a great place to be recognized in!
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1. I love that you’ve found film. What kind of film do you use?
2. You don’t need a gardener, YOU NEED TO GARDEN! I started gardening this past summer and it’s really helped me escape some of the work-commute-sleep-work cycle that is soul destroying. Especially in California – where you can do it all year round!
3. I see that you’ve discovered hiking. For me, a weekend in the mountains feels like a week away. Anyway, I’ve really loved reading your blog. Here’s mine (not as detailed and I haven’t figured out how to enable comments all the time): http://jing-a-ling.tumblr.com/
Jing! I’ve been using Fuji Superia X-tra 800 for most of the color photography on the site so far. A few of the photos are Kodak 400 film.
I am SO lazy about gardening. My mother told me to start gardening, but the sheer size of the backyard is rather daunting… I’ll think about it though.
As for hiking– isn’t it amazing?? I love it. It helps that my boyfriend is really into it, too. So we go on hikes all through the summer. It was really a bummer he wasn’t able to join for my trip to Yosemite.
Love your blog, too, girl! Thanks for sending me the link. 🙂
these photos are amazing. i know how you feel because that’s the same thing i’m experiencing now. everything has been replaced by the working life. film photography is my form of escape. i’m glad you’re on your way back to being happy again. 🙂 good luck!
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Thanks. I’m also happy to hear that you use film as a form of escape. It’s great, isn’t it? It’s like a breath of a fresh air in a world where the air has gotten quite stagnant. 🙂
wow! i love! please check out my blog too if you have a moment. thanks and have a great day. J
Thank you! 🙂