Give The Little Guy A Chance

Garage, Milwaukee WI © jwl (Olympus 35RC)

For as long as I have been making photographs, I have had an affection for the small cameras. Even though the majority of my work is made in Medium Format, I love to play with pocket sized 35mm cameras. There is something so very personal and truthful about the process of looking at the world with a small camera.

The machine itself is a wonderful tool. To have the possibility of creating a lasting and memorable image with something so small is an addictive kind of power. Oddly, the even more versatile and somewhat better resolution of an iphone camera doesn't resonate as much power for me. Not that I don't use them, there's just a different feeling I get with the old film version.

Shadow, Milwaukee, WI © jwl (Olympus 35RC)

Maybe it has something to do with learning with film when I was young, or enjoying a more tactile ideal with the camera settings and all that... Who knows why I feel different with one camera over another? At the end of the day, it's the photograph that truly matters. 

Hard Ten Days, Knoxville, TN © jwl (Olympus XA)

Since I generally have one or two of these cameras loaded around the studio for me to just grab and go whenever I feel like working, it can take a while for me to use up a roll of film. Granted, lately it has gone faster since I haven't been using the Digital much, but you understand. One or Two negatives, every once in a while can take some time.

These three photographs were made years apart, with two cameras on the same roll of film (I took it out and used it again later). They are examples of Democratically looking at whatever strikes me while on a walk from somewhere to somewhere else.

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