Hi I’m Bill, a film photographer with a focus on landscape, street, architecture and portraiture. My works have been sold via commission and exhibited in two group shows atSovereign House and in Oakville Camera Club exhibits at the Queen Elizabeth Park Community Cultural Centre in Oakville, Ontario Canada.
I have a life long interest in photography starting with an early childhood interest in my dad’s cameras including a Nikon F and Leica M3. Fast forward to 14 years ago I started getting serious about after receiving a Canon Rebel G from my parents with a subtle hint I was working too hard at my marketing job and needed a creative outlet.
My brother got into photography at the same time and sparked my interest in older film cameras on the cusp of digital photography’s beak out looked to be an odd obsession. I got a Canon AE-1 and started shooting black and white in 2002 mostly with Agfa APX 400, later switching to other films. While some people suggested sticking with just one emulsion and developer I tried different combinations, I am not going to be hostage to a supply issue.
My dad’s passing in 2005 brought me back to his Nikon F and Leica M3, both got overhauled and are still used today.
Along with teaching myself film process and traditional black and white darkroom printing I started collecting cameras, mostly Nikons, Pentax screw-mount, Olympus OM, Leica M mount rangefinder, Canon FD and exploring medium format with Rolleiflex.
As you gather from above, my two formats of choice are 35mm and 6x6 in 120, while black and white is still my main interest, I have been shooting a lot more C-41 colour negative in the past two years.
See more film photography from Bill Smith on his blog.
READ MORE FROM BILL SMITH BELOW
I can’t quite remember when I got my first Spotmatic, it was a SP1000, screwmount version of a K1000 minus the hot shoe over a decade ago, I have my brother Alex to blame for enabling me. I later picked up an Asahi Pentax Spotmatic F from the Henry’s Clearance Centre when they were located on Queen St. in Toronto just west of the flagship store. Much later in 2013 on I grabbed a Spotmatic SP and II off Leica repair tech Dan Goldberg ‘s site when the Canadian dollar was at par.
Efke 100 was an old school single layer silver rich black and white film from the 1950s made in Croatia by Fotokemika. Production ended in 2012 when the factory closed after an old coating machinery broke down and couldn’t be repaired. Fast forward five years, I was hanging with fellow members of the Classic Camera Revival Podcast, and Peter Lee told me there was an Ebay seller with bricks of Efke 100 in 35mm expired in 2015 for sale for about $75 Cdn, shipping included. How can I say no to that? I bought two bricks a few weeks apart.
Canon FTb, a workhorse loved by die-hard Canon FD mount fans, is one camera that gets overshadowed by the A-1 and AE-1 with photography enthusiasts.
I own a lot of Nikon cameras, yes, I collect a lot of manual focus bodies but there’s one autofocus body in my kit I picked up years ago off Ebay. Recently I decided for kicks to run a roll of film through it, I’m talking about the Nikon N90s (in the USA) and F90x (rest of planet Earth), it is a very sophisticated sleeper of a camera that in it’s day was considered a pro body, today you can buy for peanuts.
Film photographer Bill Smith makes a convincing case for the worry-free practice of acquiring durable cameras to tote on vacation.
A nice review of a time-proven system, along with some useful tips for purchasing and maintaining you growing collection: The Olympus OM-Single digit system.