Lesson Learned: Roll 12

A Year with Olympus and Ilford: Roll 12


Back at it again in November. YAY! Last month we went to New Orleans (more on that soon!) and I shot (almost) a whole roll of HP5 in my OM1 while we were there. I finished up the roll at home the next day.

With this roll, I had a very hard time loading it into the developing reel. I was in the middle of developing my 120 rolls from the trip and I didn’t dry my hands well enough. The negatives started to stick and it sort of just went down hill from there. I had to close it in the tank and walk away several times. And I made 3 or 4 attempts before I walked away. It was a challenge. And unfortunately, I scratched the negatives in the process. I’m chalking this up to a painful learning experience that kinda works. My images look 100 years old already. So it is what it is.

One of the things I absolutely love about this project that I wasn’t expecting: how much I learn with each roll. And I don’t just mean how to the film and camera respond to certain lighting conditions, weather, and settings. I was expecting that. But what I wasn’t expecting was what each roll, the process, the subjects…what they would teach me. This roll didn’t necessarily teach me anything profound (like rolls 2 and 3 did) but it did teach me to pause. I was so frustrated with the issues I was having getting it loaded on the reel that I almost pulled it out of my bag, exposed it to light, and threw it away. But I’m so glad I didn’t. I wish I would have had more patience with it. But I stuck with it and the images work. They are gritty, unique, and a little old school…much like New Orleans.