Film Travels

February 10, 2011

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.


These are magical. Absolutely breathtaking. I just love talented people.

Lovely photos! This makes me want to kick my Contax 645 savings into high gear.

Beautiful images. The last one makes me laugh and shake my head :)

Excellent stuff to say the least…

Incredibly inspiring imagery.

Cuddle shot under the tree is FAV!

Love the picture of the Cola bottle… so simple!

AMAZING–just killer work, dude!

I suddenly want a medium format film camera so, so badly.

Your work never seizes to amaze me. Thanks for inspiring Jonas. Stay awesome.

Whowa! that is some seriously deep snow! London got snow last year but nothing this deep! Great work Jonas.

Amazing series of pictures, keep up the great work, I enjoy looking at you updates

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. :(

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?


outstanding work! Love your portraits

When I go back to Sweden again on holiday I’ll bring my old Hasselblad back here to London. Love that feeling to wait and see the results of shooting with film.

love, love, love all of these images. will always be in awe of film and now so inspired to get a contax. :)

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. ;-)

thoroughly enjoyed going through these now that i’ve been playing with a contax myself! love the NYC images.

Ooooo baby. Those Fuji colors, they get me every time. Beautiful.

what a great series! my fave is the one of your little boy in the kitchen.

hoooooooly moooooly! you make me shivery shiver! :) i love these. hot diggity, JP. hot diggity.

Stupid question.. but isn’t medium format film square? Lovely stuff.

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.

Loverly! The film is looking good. Nice little tour around the world. Enjoy your next set of adventures!

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!!!

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?

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!!

Every single shot is flawless. U’re amazing!! ;)

These are gorgeous! Love the colors and depth!

Det här är helt fantastiskt. Jag tappar andan. Och gråter glädjetårar.



amazing images! That last shot is priceless!

They’re gorgeous.
What I found interesting is that your composition style is different in this set from what I’ve gotten used to.

Sweet jesus Jonas. Nice work. Very nice.

WOW! You made me wish to buy a Contax! ;-)

fellow FINDer here. lovely images Jonas. look forward to meeting you at WPPI.

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.

Wow! These are all amazing. I just love Jonathan, and you must have had the time of your life at that workshop. He has a heart of gold.

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.

Good stuff Jonas, definitely a certain quality to these.

Vision + Passion + Creativity.
Awesome images JP!

Damn…such beautiful shots! Makes me want to learn to shoot film. The dynamic range and color are phenomenal. Very nice dude.

Me too, love Contax 645 with 80 2.0!!

these pictures are so gorgeous. I can’t really express what I think about this photos!

Muy lindas, gran juguete te compraste. Salu2.

I’ve missed this…

Jonas, these are just gorgeous. I love seeing the way you look at a scene, especially one that I was present at, like Janine said. Crazy cool.

i got chills looking at this set. so intense…
thanks for the inspiration. phew!

as IF!

This is ridonkulous, you are seriously a beast. I feel like dying.
Thanks for depressing me beyond belief you amazing amazehead. Grrrrrrrrr.

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

Just when I thought you couldn’t get any better, you bust out the film camera… NICE. (and Jon & Tavis are both so silly. tho thilly!!!)

ps your little ones looks like a little ginger bread man, so cute I could eat him!!!

Nice work man! So happy to see others shooting film still :)

Have just fallen in love with your photos all over again. Love them and makes me want to try film!

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…

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.

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. :(

oh lord I think I just choked when I saw Jonathan’s shot….that HAS to be his new profile shot. You my friend are the MASTER!!!! I salut you x

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

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!

These are the goods Jonas! Film + Jonas = Extra Awesomeness.

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.

life looks full of wonder through your Contax camera. Happy travels dude!

I love to see how you’re always growing.

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

Quick question, for all the ones you took outside of the workshop – were you using the sekonic or the in camera meter?

Truly exquisite Jonas. Seeing things through your eyes makes me happy :)

crazy beautiful!–when is your film workshop? :)

You dirt bag. Why you gotta be so good. Ha, love this stuff.

There’s just something awesome about film. Everytime I see it I get the urge to take out my old yashica again.

Nice work Jonas. :)

Holy cow! Film has such a rich, ‘real’, look to it. Amazing set of images, Jonas. It would make a bunch of sweet wall-art!

These are stunning. You’ve got such an amazing gift.

angela: the lab scans them for you (if you want)

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.

killer set, RPL rules, loving your film eye brother.

U are so my hero. I cant wait for Jon’s workshop in Seattle come July!

What Angela said. Love. Can I ask a silly question? How do you get film images on your blog? DO you scan them?

it also confirms the fact that I can not spell LEGEND. ugh. lol

All this does is confirm the fact that you are a lengend.

and jonathan canlas is one sexy beast.

These are breathtakingly beautiful Jonas. Just beautiful :)