Recently, we had a social media open call for photographers from all over the world who would like to give our Potsdam Kino 35 mm film a try. There were so many of you who applied, it was tough narrowing the list to just 25! It warmed our hearts knowing that the Potsdam Kino sparked excitement and curiosity. Here's the first batch of photographers, each with a distinct style, sharing their photographs and experiences with this German cine film.
Paulius Zizliauskas often shoots in black and white. In the beginning, he thought that it's easier because the pictures look effortlessly dramatic and artistic. But over time, after long talks with senior photographers, he realized that there's more to black & white photography than its aesthetic. Shooting in black & white, he says, lets him fully analyze the emotions coming from people without the influence of colors. For this shoot, he used a Nikon F3 with the Potsdam film. His goal is to show the real faces of the people around him without posing or artifice.
"The film has a nice contrast that is a bit lower than I'm used to., which gives smooth skin tones. For portraiture work, I think it's a very good choice if you want to show your subject in a more subtle way. Also, the latitude (considering my first test roll) seems quite big if compared to classic films like Kodak Tri-X (which I use almost always). Shooting at a photo studio, I've lit my subject with two softboxes and the surrounding area was quite dark. So I thought that the end result might be darker, but was pleasantly surprised with how much dynamic range there was."
Carianne Older: Monochrome Disco
Carianne Older 's photography passion started when she was a model. Upon realizing that she could be taking pictures herself, she bought a camera and started shooting. Inspired by '70s and '80s and anything related to David Lynch, she describes her style as "dreamy, colorful, cute, special". However, she gave the Potsdam Kino a shot.
"Grabbed my best friend on my lunch break and I told her I wanted to shoot in a forest with my disco ball. We managed to find the most perfect spot and nail the shoot in under 20 minutes. I’m not huge in black and white. I like to shoot in color but it’s always nice to do something different from time to time. It was challenging but I really enjoyed the outcome of the film!"
Sebastian Binder: Minimal Observations
Sebastian Binder used a digital camera for years until he discovered the Olympus Pen half-frame cameras, which rekindled his love for film. In fact, he has another Instagram account called @halbformat, which features his half-frame shots. He describes his photography style as observant, trying to "keep things as simple and minimalist as possible." He'll capture anything and everything that catches his eye, based on intuition and spontaneity. With this photo series, he wandered around the streets of Vienna and applied his philosophy of snapping a photo intuitively. When asked about his experience using the film, he reveals:
"I pushed the film two stops and it worked well. I got nice deep shadows and accentuated grain without losing detail. It was pretty much what I hoped it would be!"
Stay tuned for the next roster of photographers who tested the Potsdam Kino 35 mm film! We will also be featuring first impressions with the 120 version of this cinematic emulsion, so watch this space.