My name is Andrzej Sliwa-Gonzalez and I currently live in Zurich, Switzerland. By day, I study how cells divide at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich, where I’m currently doing a PhD.
what film do you use?
I shoot both in color and black & white. My go to black & white films are Kodak TRI-X and Ilford HP5. You can push and pull them with no problem and I love stand developing these films. Ive also fallen in love with Ilford FP4+ and its rich blacks. For color photography, it really depends on the light and situation. Provia and Velvia for when I hit the mountains but I usually have some Fuji Pro400H /Kodak Portra 400 for everyday situations.
what cameras do you use?
While I’ve gathered a small collection of cameras, I mostly shoot with three cameras. A Leica M4-P and CL with 15/35/40/50/90mm lenses and a Nikon FM2 with 24mm and 50mm lenses. Ill take out my Bronica SQ-A once in a while as well 🙂
what got you into shooting film?
I tried film out during my studies because there was a darkroom close by and I manage to get my hands on an Olympus film SLR. However, not long after I got a DSLR and got bored of film pretty fast. Fast forward a few years,when I was going through my old things and happen to find my old camera with half a roll still empty. I started shooting with it again and fell in love with the whole process.
It seems like film shooters are always trying to justify their reasons for shooting film (at least on certain photography forums). While there are many differences between the two and even more arguments for using one over the other, for me, the real answer is that I just like it. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy photography as a whole and I take the digital out every so often, but shooting film and being involved in the whole process, from the click of the shutter to a finished negative/print is just so much more satisfying and personal than the digital process. The time and work that go into finding out whether a photo is even good really makes you think twice before snapping the shutter but the feeling of getting the picture is just sooooooo good. A nice thing about constantly shooting film is that after a while, one gets quite proficient at judging light which is nice since I’m usually using a meterless/manual camera. I also like the process of making prints and having something tangible to work rather than a digital file, although thats might just be me. Who knows, maybe it is silly to shoot film in this day and age when we have such capable digital cameras. At the same time, there must be a reason all these film filters and retro-styled digital cameras exist… I just think its really cool to see more and more people shoot film and I hope the trend continues.