Film Photography As Creative Reboot


As a Zoomer, 19-year-old Danylo Vasylysyn's exposure to film photography was initially inspired when he stumbled upon an Instagram profile by a local rave party organizer. It looked vintage, and it appealed to him greatly. He admits, "I did not realize that the photos were shot on film. I tried to replicate it with some software and it turned out to be what I was looking for (still I believe there's no substitute for actually shooting a film roll). I then abandoned the idea for some time, but I consider it to be my first inspiration."

Credits: danylo_v

Presently, Danylo shuttles back and forth between his hometown in Ukraine and Poland, where he studies Computer Science. In some way, it was his course that brought him into film photography.

"The studying process is quite tedious and monotonous, therefore after the first semester, I was seeking some creative activity and got obsessed with the idea of trying to shoot film. Moreover while searching for the camera online I found out that my grandfather had one. So after a day of messing around with an old Zenit 11 and acquiring wisdom from the master (my grandfather) I took a 30-year-old outdated B&W film roll and shot the first set. But what got me fully hooked was developing film and printing photos in the darkroom. The first photos started appearing on the paper and that's when I knew I was in."
Credits: danylo_v

When taking photos, he generally divides it into two types, which he calls "WannaBeAnArtist" and "regular-ass" photos.

"In the case with the first type, the camera is an instrument in an experiment conducted by me. There are no specific objects or people that I look for when making such shots. Instead, I'm looking for scenes, where it's not instantly clear for the viewer what is in the frame or how calm something got there. I experiment with camera positioning, context, movement."
Credits: danylo_v

And what would the other type be?

"Regular-ass" photos are serving more as memory or provoke emotions rather than an aesthetic purpose. These mostly feature people. And I think such photos turn out best when they are not made intentionally. In other words—you don't go there to shoot, you capture the moment because you are there and you like it. And in the same way, it's much harder to find a nice idea for a photo than to stumble upon it. I suppose this is so because one can not show sincere emotions just for a photo, there should be something more behind that creates the emotions.
Credits: danylo_v

For a young photographer in the social media age, visual inspiration is easily accessible but can also be overwhelming. Danylo acknowledges that his own ideas are a result of collective experiences and other people's ideas as well—the further he goes into his photography journey, the harder it is to track the roots of his inspiration.

"Nevertheless, to point out some sources—I enjoy the visual style of Maslo Chernogo Tmina (a performer from Kazakhstan). Also, I rarely memorize the names of the photographers and artists, and being fair I don't know much of them, but I'm really into the photos of Bruce Gilden. The way that he suddenly captures people on the street doesn't leave them any chance to realize they are being photographed, which makes them fit perfectly into the urban scene."

For reference, Danylo refers to this reportage.

Credits: danylo_v

To see more of Danylo's photos, follow him on his LomoHome and Instagram. Some photos of Danylo were shot by his friend Illia.

written by shhquiet on 2021-09-06

One Comment

  1. leisuresuit
    leisuresuit ·

    Nice article. Happy you found film!

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