The online community of film photography enthusiasts is ever-growing and you only need to take one look at UK-based shooter Clare Williams' Instagram feed to realise she is a hardened analogue shooter with a penchant for all things Lomography. Clare shoots with the Diana Mini, Fisheye No.2, Holga, and Action Sampler. She experiments with a wide range of films and has perfected the classic double-exposure/flip shot. We dragged her away from her analogue armoury for a few minutes and asked her some questions about her favorite hobby.
Hi Clare, please tell us a bit about yourself?
Hi! I'm 40, I live in Cheshire with my husband Paul, our dog Woody and my leopard gecko Dexy. For my job I check medical retinal photographs for signs of disease as part of the Diabetic Eye Screening Programme. I have usually got a handful of hobbies on the go at any time, analogue photography is one of them.
How did you get into shooting film?
I actually grew up using film and have always loved photography. So as part of my Art & Design GNVQ course at sixth form college I took photography classes where we learned how to use a manual SLR, develop and print our own photos in the college darkroom. I had a 20 odd year hiatus when digital cameras became more popular and then last year I came across some film photography accounts on Instagram and discovered Lomography from there. I bought my vintage Lomo Cosmic 35 and the obsession was rekindled.
What's the appeal and what do you like to shoot?
I like thinking about how the final image might look and my favorite things to shoot are interesting or striking architecture, trees and foliage and sunlight in all forms. My photos are quite often experimental and I love a flipped double exposure.
Tell us about your experiences shooting with the Diana Mini and Fisheye cameras? Anything you particularly love?
I picked up the Diana Mini second hand and love the half frame feature and being able to take multiple exposures with it. It's tiny and lightweight so it's easy to carry around with me. The Fisheye No.2 I found on a second hand stall at Portobello Road market while on a photowalk with the #sheheartsfilm crowd. The stall holder actually told me it was broken so he couldn't sell it to me...Unless I wanted to but any other camera and he'd give it to me for free. So obviously I snapped it up. My friend said to send the camera to her and she'd try and fix it. She got it working enough for me to take photos with and this was my first roll with it. I really love the wide angle aesthetic and how it focuses on subjects from just 10cm. Very unusual for a point-and-shoot I've found and it's great to take group shots and selfies.
And you've shot with so many different kinds of film. Can you tell us about these?
I have ADHD and one thing that most of us with ADHD love more than anything else is something new! So I like to try ALL the film. I appear to have started a collection which is rapidly taking over my fridge. My favorites so far have been LomoChrome Purple, Kodak Gold and Revolog Snovlox. I'm very much looking forward to hopefully getting my hands on some LomoChrome Turquoise to experiment with soon.
If you were to invent a camera or film what would it do?
Now you're asking! I'd like a really lightweight and small manual control SLR please. Something that puts me off using my vintage SLRs are the weight of them!