Film Travels

I travel quite a lot and I’ve found that I rarely whip out my digital camera anymore. And that’s a shame. To maintain your style, you want to keep shooting all the time, and it should be for fun. So in September last year I bought myself a medium format film camera, a Contax 645, and started taking photos for fun again, capturing the small things I saw around me, re-discovering colours and looking for compositions. In January this year I attended the Film Is Not Dead workshop in Melbourne with Jonathan Canlas.

These images were taken the last six months in Bali, Mexico, Sweden, NYC and Australia.

They’re all shot with the Contax 645 with a Planar 80mm f/2.0 and are straight out of camera. I used mainly Fuji 400H and one roll of Kodak Portra 400. Richard’s Photo Lab in LA developed and scanned the images.

Tomorrow I leave again. This time for for NYC, The Bahamas and WPPI in Las Vegas.

The Contax won’t leave my side.

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  1. I want to be in the top picture right now. I might give an arm or a leg to be laying in that hammock on the beach. Sigh. Alas I’m in PA, USA freezing my tail end off. :(

  2. Great work!

    One thing made me think and wonder. These “straight out of camera” film scans are pretty consistent with your digital work, mix it up and I will have hard time telling the difference. Is it something RPL did specifically for you, based on the look of your work?


  3. Amazing what a lack of an anti-aliasing filter and a good film stock will look like. Add to that your great style and eye for composition and you have some really fantastic images. What did they poeple on the airplane do when you whipped out the 645? I can just imagine everyone with their camera phones and you bust out the beast to get a window shot. ;-)

  4. I keep watching the Contax 645’s when they come up on eBay and I haven’t actually taken the plunge. I would love to though. Been in love with the look of Jose & Elizabeth’s work on that camera for a couple years. These shots are lovely. I love the colour and yet they are still YOUR style. nice.

  5. Ok, you and Jonathan had convinced me! I’ll try to use a Zenith camera that is kept somewhere at home. Let’s see what I can do with it ;)
    By the way, the photos are amazingly beautiful, no matter digital or film camera you use. Bravo Jonas!!!

  6. Beautiful! Love the Contax! So…when you travel with it, do you keep things simple and use the in camera meter, or an external light meter?

  7. wow. i love these!!! you are right that it’s so important to shoot for fun and for yourself. i have been trying to do that lately too! :D

    i love your work!!

  8. Wow Jonas, what lovely images. I love shooting film for personal work too and have long considered a Contax as a way to make it easier (currently shooting an m645). It is always so nice to get the film back after you have let go the experience of recording the image; like seeing the image again in the viewfinder.

  9. I think Annette Wilson (in the comments above) said it best : Thanks for depressing me beyond belief you amazing amazehead. Yeah. That’s how I feel. I will now go bury my camera and hang up my hat. Amazoid work.

  10. wowowowwowowowowowowowowowow love these, the light is so crisp, looks like they have been sprinkled lightly with grain and texture… great to see your journey with film FAB.joanna

  11. wonderful!! really beautiful, something extra special about film! I can’t wait to attend the Canlas workshop over summer! I was curious about focusing too, sounds like it’s a tad difficult to get in focus…

  12. Katie: All the landscapes were shot using the camera meter. Since I shot 400H I overexposed them roughly 2 stops. I haven’t bought the brighter screen yet, but I will. I had MANY shots out of focus too.

    Leah: I started using the Sekonic at the workshop.

  13. These are incredible Jonas!! Love love love them! Any tips for metering for landscapes? You’re so spot on! Ps did u get ur Contax screen brightened? I literally have half my images out of focus per roll and that’s worrisome. :(

  14. LOL! This is just crazy!! It doesn’t get any better Jonas, wonderful vision! Jonathan looks happy as well.

  15. I love seeing the world through your eyes! and not just because you have seen way more of it than me :) mostly because you capture things with such honesty and realism the viewer takes away a little of the experience with them, just superb!

  16. Wicked. And totally fits the style of all the rest of your work. I’m buying a piggy bank and loading it up until I can buy a kick-ass medium format.

  17. oh my Jonas! You are amazing. There is something quite surreal about seeing the images of a scene you were actually present at,.. seeing the way you saw it through your camera is fabulous! My heart actually skipped a beat when I saw my Lucy girl amongst your amazing images. You are blessed with an amazing gift and I am so glad I got to meet you and witness it. xxxxx

  18. jonas! these are AMAZINGGG!! I love all of them!!! that girls feet with the apple.. ! and the girl with the stripey top!! ;) so cool to see your perspective through this camera! LOVE that corner building shot in NY.


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