24 July 2012
There's nothing like a trip to London to give me a shot in the arm and get me photographing again. My last day trip had been a very long time ago. These post-Brighton days mean the journey requires a little advance planning: you can't just rock up at Temple Meads Station and expect to hop on a train to the Smoke without selling a kidney to afford it. Nope, you have to book ahead for a cheaper deal. So last week, tickets purchased well in advance, we took the 1 3/4 hour journey eastwards to shop, look around, drink coffee and meet some friends for dinner. I also wanted to visit the recently re-opened Photographers' Gallery and the Lomography Gallery Store in Soho.
But rather than run-down what we did in London, great day that it was, I'm going to skip ahead to what happened when we got back. Sure enough, both photographic mecca's were truly inspirational. I came away with renewed photographic optimism. I decided I really wanted to shoot some more film. As soon as we got home late at night and exhausted, I located my Lomo LC-A+ camera and discovered film inside that had been there - it turns out - for well over two years. There were just a few exposures left so I shot those off and wandered off to our local High Street to get the film developed.
I wasn't even sure that you can still get film developed on the High Street, though at least in Jessops it turns out you can. I had completely forgotten what I'd shot so there was a degree of excitement and anticipation when I returned a couple of hours later to collect my CD (I'd decided not to have the photos printed). And wow! What a surprise! It became clear, when I noticed shots from our trip to Leeds in July 2010, that the film had been in the camera a lot longer than I'd realised. There were others from around Bristol, including several from the Suspension Bridge I can vaguely recall taking one sunny morning. The shot here of the bridge walkway is my favourite.
Digging around in my cupboard I've discovered a few expired film rolls I am going to use over the next few sunny days. Then I have a batch of almost-expired Lomography film I bought in Snappy Snaps before they closed a couple of years ago. I'm looking forward to shooting film again - one shot, then move on. One shot, then move on. It's totally different to shooting digital. But there's nothing quite like it for getting me back into the swing of photography and renewing my interest. Though I'll admit the decent weather we're currently graced with has helped a lot too...