Interview with HELENE MAJ KILDELUND, DENMARK
Updated: Jul 11, 2018
In film photography, I’ve never felt more alive.
Glad to have met you, Helene. Please tell us a bit about yourself and your photography.
Helene: It was actually sort of a coincidence that I fell in love with film photography. I was in the
middle of a tough break-up and I needed to focus on something completely new and unlike
things I had done in the past.
I started on a 6 months photography course, with the idea that I could learn new things
about my digital camera. I was introduced to a darkroom within the first couple of weeks
and that was instant love from the very first moment I stepped into the room. Ever since,
I’ve mostly been shooting with my grandpa’s old SLR film camera.
What type of film do you use and what camera do you use it with? Why do you prefer these?
Helene: I prefer to shoot photos with ‘Ilford ISO 400 color’ films and that’s mainly because
they present the best results if you ask me.
These are my favourite cameras for film photography:
Mamiya ZE Quartz + Tamron SP 28-80MM f/ 3.5-4.2.
Fujifilm Instax Wide
What do you think film has that digital doesn't have?
Helene: What I like most about film photography is the fact that it forces me to be much
more deliberate and profound when I’m working.
I can easily shoot over 100 photos of the same object, if I do it digital. I’ll probably
only use one of them, but it’s different with film photography. I’ll take approximately
2-5 photos of the object and put a lot more effort into each photo.
Do you print your own photographs or are you comfortable having them printed in a lab?
Helene: I’m totally comfortable with having them printed in a lab. I would love to have the
time and facilities to print all my photos in a lab myself, but unfortunately that’s not
possible (yet!). Usually I scan the negatives and develop them in Adobe Lightroom
and then have some of them printed at the local printer’s.
What motivates you to continue making photographs with film? Have you learned anything about yourself through film photography?
Helene: I’ve never felt more alive. I always make sure to have a film camera with me
everywhere I go, because let’s face it; you’ll never know where to find the perfect
time for the perfect photo. That way, I’m always somewhat prepared if any photo
opportunity comes along. It motivates me to get out there, to do my best and to be
proud of my work.
Are there any photographers that influenced your way of making pictures?
Helene: There have been many extremely talented photographers who have influenced me
on my journey. One of the biggest inspirations has been Luis Paredes, who is a
well-known film photographer from Mexico. He taught the photography course I was
a part of and he really turned my thoughts about photography upside-down. He
made it possible for the students to play with photography as a big format with
endless opportunities and that was really an eye-opener to me.
Do you see any value or merit shooting with film?
Helene: For me personally, it’s basically like therapy. Working on a film can be a week-long,
sometimes a whole month-long project. And then other times I shoot 3 films in one
day. It depends on mood, inspiration and where I’m finding myself in the present
moment. But the feeling of shooting a film, processing the photos and seeing the
results, is absolutely amazing.
What do you think your future is like with film photography?
Helene: I’m pretty sure that we are going to see a lot more film photography in the future.
People are starting to see the charming and beautiful touch that only film
photography accommodates. Most smartphones are able to take pretty reliable
photos, which is definitely outmatching the digital camera. But the smartphones are
not able to come any close to what film photography provides.
- Spørger de ikke havde din fremtid bliver? xD
Any dream film photography project in mind?
Helene: I’m planning to go on a trip in Denmark this summer. I’d like to set up a tent on the
beach of Western Denmark and make a reportage of the nature’s sight and its true
beauty. That must be my next film photography project for the summer. But I’d also
like to experience more with the polaroid format and explore what actually happens
while the photos develop.
Would you like to offer some good words to those who want to try film photography for the first time? What must they learn before venturing into this format?
Helene: Be patient. Stay focused and don’t hesitate with getting to know your camera. Take
your time. It’s not like digital photography where you easily can make the changes
while shooting. You have to be patient and try out different things before you’ll get
the perfect shot. And most of all, accept that you might have a ton of overexposed
and underexposed photos in the beginning (I still do that), but that’s part of the
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Well now, if you are a passionate film photographer and would like to be interviewed? I’d love to hear from you. Send me an email at email@example.com with the subject, "Interview me", and share your story, thoughts, and work related to film photography. I’ll get back to you as soon as I receive your request for an interview.
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