Shooting My First Roll of Film

by Ivan Steenkamp January. 29, 2020 435 views

Over the Christmas and New Years holidays, I did house-sitting for about five weeks in Whangarei - a town two and a half hours drive from my home in Kaitaia. On a day off from my job of raspberry picking, I went to the local Salvation Army thrift store and picked up a Canonnet QL25 rangefinder for a bargain of $50. It is in great working condition too. After a few days of looking online for 35mm film to start shooting with, I decided on Kodak Gold 200. I picked up 3 rolls at the camera shop in town and started shooting.

A bargain at $50, with a working light meter and battery even!

A bargain at $50, with a working light meter and battery even!

For the next week or so I tried my best to get to grips with shooting this antique rangefinder. These are my 25 exposures.

A test shot. ASA 200, 1/500, f/16

A test shot. ASA 200, 1/500, f/16

Another test shot. I didn't know those first two frames were usable. ASA 200, 1/500, f/16

Another test shot. I didn't know those first two frames were usable. ASA 200, 1/500, f/16

Park flowers no.1. ASA 200 1/500, f/4

Park flowers no.1. ASA 200 1/500, f/4

Park Flowers no.2.  ASA 200, 1/500, f/8

Park Flowers no.2. ASA 200, 1/500, f/8

Bumblebee, ASA 200, 1/500, f/8

Bumblebee, ASA 200, 1/500, f/8

Flower Scene, ASA 200, 1/500, f/8

Flower Scene, ASA 200, 1/500, f/8

Creeping Vines, ASA 200, 1/250, f/8

Creeping Vines, ASA 200, 1/250, f/8

Arararimu Orchard driveway. I worked here for 5 weeks or so, picking raspberries. ASA 200, 1/500, f/8

Arararimu Orchard driveway. I worked here for 5 weeks or so, picking raspberries. ASA 200, 1/500, f/8

Kiwifruit. I also helped thin the kiwifruit so that the remainder of the fruit would be better when ripe. ASA 200, 1/125, f/4

Kiwifruit. I also helped thin the kiwifruit so that the remainder of the fruit would be better when ripe. ASA 200, 1/125, f/4

Kiwifruit Portrait. This shot was just in case I overexposed the previous shot. ASA 200, 1/250, f/4

Kiwifruit Portrait. This shot was just in case I overexposed the previous shot. ASA 200, 1/250, f/4

Powerlines. ASA200, 1/250, f/11

Powerlines. ASA200, 1/250, f/11

Driveway no.1. This is the driveway I saw every morning for a month when going to work at 7am. ASA 200, 1/125, f/4

Driveway no.1. This is the driveway I saw every morning for a month when going to work at 7am. ASA 200, 1/125, f/4

Windows. ASA 200, 1/500, f/8

Windows. ASA 200, 1/500, f/8

Palmtree Shadow. ASA 200, 1/250, f/4

Palmtree Shadow. ASA 200, 1/250, f/4

Sunset Clouds. ASA 200, 1/500, f/8

Sunset Clouds. ASA 200, 1/500, f/8

Kiwifruit Vines. ASA 200, 1/500, f/11

Kiwifruit Vines. ASA 200, 1/500, f/11

Kauri Tree Branch. ASA 200, 1/500, f/4

Kauri Tree Branch. ASA 200, 1/500, f/4

Driveway no.2. ASA 200, 1/250, f/4

Driveway no.2. ASA 200, 1/250, f/4

Ararimu Orchard driveway in the early morning. Walking to the lunch room at 7:30am before work starts. ASA 200, 1/250, f/8

Ararimu Orchard driveway in the early morning. Walking to the lunch room at 7:30am before work starts. ASA 200, 1/250, f/8

Magnolia. ASA 200, 1/125, f/4

Magnolia. ASA 200, 1/125, f/4

The house I was taking care of. ASA 200, 1/60, f/2.5

The house I was taking care of. ASA 200, 1/60, f/2.5

Seagulls in flight. ASA 200, 1/500, f/8

Seagulls in flight. ASA 200, 1/500, f/8

Unused water feature. ASA 200, 1/500, f/5.6

Unused water feature. ASA 200, 1/500, f/5.6

Dickens Inn. ASA 200, 1/500, f/8

Dickens Inn. ASA 200, 1/500, f/8

Crosswalk in town. ASA 200, 1/500, f/8

Crosswalk in town. ASA 200, 1/500, f/8

I've learnt quite a lot from shooting one roll of film. Once the film is loaded in the camera, the roll should be wound back so that the film is pressed flush with the back of the camera, where it is exposed. Also, the film is a lot more forgiving than I previously thought! It can be over or underexposed with fewer consequences than on digital. I enjoyed shooting with it very much!

I'll be shooting more on film in the coming year — when I can afford it that is!

What do you think of my first attempt at analog film photography?

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There are 4 comments , add yours!
Russell Smith 10 months ago

Quite nicely done for the first roll. One thing I find amazing about film is how far you can "over expose" it and still retain detail in the highlights

10 months ago Edited
Bill Baird 10 months ago

Keep right on shooting. You are doing great !

10 months ago Edited
John Waco Jr 10 months ago

Keep up the good work!!

10 months ago Edited
Berckmans Peter 10 months ago

The canon is a fine camera. Try different film. Most of the time I underexpose a bit on sunny days. Results are not bad at all.

10 months ago Edited
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