When I dived back into film earlier this year I found an unfinished roll in my beloved Minolta. I had no idea when or where the first images on the roll were shot, but it turned out that they hailed from the summer three years ago, when my son was six months old. It was a funny trip back into time. Few of the images were what I would call successful, but some of them still have an impact on me.
In spite of its imperfections I feel this image in my midsection; it’s a strangely powerful reminder of what felt long at the time but which in hindsight was a very brief period, when I was on leave from work, the boy was a tiny baby and we went for hours-long walks with the pram.
And this – a memory of a wonderful, relaxing rest for me on the grass while the boy slept.
But then there are the images like the following, which feel like they were shot by a stranger. I have zero memory of where this is taken or what I was thinking at the time.
For the next two at least I can sort of see what I was going for in terms of composition (and oh how I wish the dual-leafed plant in the foreground were properly in focus), but I still don’t remember where they are taken.
All this is very much part of the wonderfulness that is shooting film. There is something magical about that period – short or long – between the moment of pressing the shutter and getting the developed image back from the lab. That period is filled with what you experience, and those experiences imbue the images with meaning in a very different manner than what happens when you view a digital image a second or two after you shot it.