Interview with TIMOTHY AQUINO, PHILIPPINES
Film teaches you many good things, and you'll learn to value hard work.
First, tell us about yourself, Timothy, and perhaps, a brief story on how and when you got your first taste of film photography.
Timothy: I am currently on my senior year in college in Manila, Philippines. I do photojournalism, portraits, and concert photography. I got into film photography in 2015 because of curiosity with an Elicar MS-10 SLR which I purchased online. Then the next year I got a chance to be taught by Kazuo Sumida about film processing and printing.
What type of film do you use and what camera do you use it with? Why do you prefer these?
Timothy: I use 35mm cameras, a SLR and a rangefinder cameras because they come in handy. I use Ilford HP5 Plus 400 and Delta 3200 most of the time. Now I'm getting into using large format for portraits.
What do you think film has that digital doesn't have?
Timothy: Film always gives me the thrill, it taught me how to be patient and it calms me. There are more interactions with using film rather than digital cameras. The whole process is like meditation to me.
Do you print your own photographs or are you comfortable having them printed in a lab?
Timothy: I print my own work. I like working for hours printing because I can think of what I will do next and it relaxes me. And, when I give people their printed portraits, it's very rewarding to see a smile on their face after the hard work and patience in the darkroom.
What motivates you to continue making photographs with film? Have you learned anything about yourself through film photography?
Timothy: As long as I can see and walk, I will still take photographs. I met good people because of it. Aside from Sumida Sensei, I'm learning other film photography related stuff from Sir Jay Javier and Jesed Moreno of Fotofabrik. There are still other processes out there that I want to learn about.
Are there any photographers that influenced your way of making pictures?
Timothy: Robert Doisneau, Kazuo Sumida, Don McCullin, and Sir Jay Javier.
Do you see any value shooting with film?
Timothy: It teaches you many good things like discipline and patience aside from the technical stuff. You'll value hard work.
What do you think your future is like with film photography?
Timothy: As long as there are people using film, it will continue. Good thing there are manufacturers that are returning to make film.
Do you have any dream film photography project?
Timothy: I dream of getting into conflict zones and do a photo book about it.
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?
Timothy: Go for it! Learn the basics, read books they help a lot, and talk with credible people about the craft. Stay humble because in this craft there's really a lot to learn.
Film photography requires patience and hard work. And, often times it brings new opportunities—sometimes they come through new acquaintances, and often they are the result of greater insights and understanding that hard work produced.
Get to know Timothy more. Follow his marvelous work on Instagram and on Behance.
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