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Film Photography amidst 'Lockdown'

Long gone were the days where the world's health situation was held in a debate between being a pandemic vs an epidemic. Or was it? I can only imagine how much of a dealbreaker COVID-19 has been for the year 2020 and my personal experience with these recent days felt excruciatingly long. Here in Singapore as we continue to live under the conditions of the 'circuit breaker' measures, many of us are forced to slow down, recalibrate and take in what is most presently available to us - our families, our homes.

Canon AE-1 Program with Canon 28mm f2.8

Canon AE-1 Program w Canon nFD 28mm f2.8

As I dwell upon the plans for the day and even the month ahead, I decided to embark on a film photography project — black and white photography, no rules, no themes, just within the confines of my own home. Albeit, the not too far off roadblock which I conveniently dismissed will return to pull my spirits down while I am midway into my project — where do I go to get my film developed?

I have to admit that during the first few days into the photography project, documenting the things in my house injected some life in me. A time of fun in a time of an ever so monotonous, routined lifestyle which was void of almost all social interactions. Nevertheless, even though the process was fun, I felt like I was working out a portion of my brain that had remained dormant all these while. Yes, the routine of my immediate environment has somehow hardwired me to develop darting glances over the simple and often under-appreciated things in my home.

Still, with what I had at hand, I found that it was actually a pleasure to pocket those snippets of time during the day to lay my finger on the shutter button. Was it the 'canon squeak'? Was it the mystery behind the photo that eludes me even more so at this moment? Or was it simply that I had nothing to do and it felt good to fill up my time and mental space with photography? This I can never be so sure of anytime soon.

For now, I lay patiently in wait within the confines of my four walls, for the day where I can step foot into my all so familiar store for film processing.

36 exposures of Kodak Tri-X 400 film

Kodak Tri-X 400 (35mm film)


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