Twelve months of film
Twelve months of film

Twelve months of film

I’ve started the project “Twelve months of film” in 2024, and decided to write about my experience. So..let’s start from the top.

My film photography story, like many others, begins with an overly enthusiastic father pointing a camera at my and my brother’s direction. Repeatedly. Constantly. He wasn’t home much due to him working overseas, so he took every and any opportunity to take as many pictures of us as he possibly could. I love my father dearly, but at that time, he was what George Carlin described as “some dick, some yo-yo, some putz” with a cam-corder (for us, the dreaded cam-corder came in the late 90s) thinking he’s Federico Fellini (or, in my father’s case, maybe Henri Cartier Bresson). He loved photography since he was a young teen, constantly snapping pictures of people he loved with his Smena 8M. He used his beloved Smena until the early 90s when he bought the Canon Autoboy Prisma/Sure Shot Ace/Prima Shot, and then the silver (or is it gold? champagne?) Olympus Mju Zoom 70. Nowadays, he doesn’t shoot film, but he’s still an overly enthusiastic (grand)father taking pictures of anything and everything with his phone.

So my love of photography stems from those particular childhood memories of my dad being so happy he could “take us with him”, at least on that glossy photo paper. I was shooting on film during elementary school on that same Olympus Mju (and was so proud of being the only one in my class who knew how to load film in the camera, at the age of 7), and later had more than a few different digital cameras, courtesy of, you guessed it, my dad, and took digital pictures exclusively. But now in my senior years (mid-thirties), I became a millennial boomer, and rediscovered film photography.

There are so many ways to shoot film, so many different cameras (there’s a whole cabinet full of them in my apartment), so many different lenses, so many different techniques, positions, creative ideas, etc., and it all can be quite overwhelming (especially for a beginner which, with my current mental capacity, I consider myself to be). With that in mind, this year I decided to shoot on only two cameras so I can master them – the Olympus OM-10 and Zenit 12XP. With lenses, I take what I have – for the Olympus: Olympus Zuiko 50mm f1.8, Sigma super-wide II 24mm f2.8 and Olympus Zuiko MC auto-zoom 35-70mm f4, and for Zenit: Helios 44M-4 58mm f2 and Focal 28mm f2.8.

Olympus OM10 with Olympus Zuiko 50mm f1.8
Olympus OM10 with Sigma super-wide II 24mm f2.8
Olympus OM10 with Olympus Zuiko 35-70mm f4
Zenit 12XP with Helios 44M-4 58mm f2
Zenit 12XP with Focal 28mm f2.8

So, the films will all be 35mm, both b/w and color (unfortunately, no slides, as it is impossible to develop them here. Thanks, Tomašević!), and at the end of every month, this post will be updated with link(s) to post(s) of that particular month’s chosen camera, film, and an assortment of photos1.

January – Kiki Pan 320 in Olympus OM10

I believe it is time for me to stop yapping and start shooting. Wish me luck!

  1. B/w’s will be developed immediately upon finishing the film, as I develop them at home, but colors might be late. Hopefully, not very late. ↩︎