The Disposable Camera: 25

Disposable Camera, Jamie Chan

A little over a year ago, my partner handed me 2 disposable cameras with 25 exposures each.
I’ve worked with film cameras but never with a disposable one. You can catch a glimpse of the camera above; no autofocus -heck there is no focus at all; no metering; no LCD screen; no ISO; no nothing.
Just a plastic box with somewhat of a plastic viewfinder, a really powerful flash for its size, a shutter and a winder which makes a lot of noise.

I made my exposures with it and the cameras kind of sat on my desk as art pieces since I started travelling like a madwoman and had no time to develop the films.
Since I started working, I had been telling my customers my experiences with film and with making my own pinhole camera back in school. I guess it kind of struck me that I have so many rolls of undeveloped film sitting in my camera quite literately! In fact, I think I still have a few more exposures for my Hasselblad…

Anyways back to my point. I waited 2 painful days for the lab to call me and when I got to see the prints for the first time, it was like Christmas with a bunch of what the hell is this?

No idea what the hell was that but I completely forgot the feeling you get when you process your film. The wait, the excitement and the GOOD LORD WILL YOU LOOK AT THAT!
With digital, it is so much easier as everything is instant. In this case, the images feels like a time capsule as I am only looking at them a year later…












The thing about shooting film is that I get a lot more discipline and really keep my eyes on the light. Since I don’t have to worry about my exposure or focus, I can feel my shots a lot more.

Recently, I had been trying to grapple with the idea of ‘feeling your images’. Its the tug that makes you lift your camera to your face to make an exposure. Whenever I get that feeling, I really like my images but that feeling is hard to come by and ever since I noticed it, I have been chasing that ‘feeling’.
In a recent shoot, there was a particular moment where I went ‘that’s the shot’ but I asked myself why? What so great about that particular moment?
I made two exposure and the moment was gone, the feeling got away.
I squeezed that photo into the final edit of my essay anyways but I am not exactly sure it belongs there.

I asked my mentor and he says he sees hopping and disappearing rabbits in my images. As much as I want to believe he is smoking weed, deep down I know that he is right. I am missing something.
I spoke to a huge range of people with regards to my images and had so many points of view and feedback.
It was so frustrating and I was swimming in the deep depths of depression when a ray of light came from another mentor of mine.
He is a musician, an artist and he reminded me why I picked up photography in the first place.
That I do it to express myself. This is the arts. You are not curing cancer; shut up and shoot.

Photography and the arts, in general, opened so many doors for me and allowed me to meet so many amazing people and I am extremely very grateful for that.
I honestly cannot imagine my life without expression; without the arts.

I have so many images to share, especially some images from the new Leica M Type 240 as I was fortunate enough to work with that amazing camera the other night.

Despite my full-time job, I promise to shoot whenever I can and you guys can look forward to the images(:
In any case, shoot; sing; draw; paint; dance; write; whatever.
Do arts; have an opinion.

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