On a roll is a project I cooked up when I did a quick photoshoot last year on a single roll of film. I was inspired by how much more I could get out of 24 / 36 shots taken on a roll of film than on a memory card in my digital camera. I shoot less and, I think, I shoot better. I’m not going to launch an enquiry into why; Do I think more because there a fewer shots available? Does the look of film simply suit my taste more, leading me to think it somehow better than digital? Or does the analogue faery come along and possess my fingers with greater photographic powers? See. It’s too silly to ask (my money’s on the last one though).
Fast forward a few months and onto a fresh set of calendars with the 14 swapped for a 15 and I’ve turned the idea from that photoshoot into a year long project. The idea is that every week, I will go and explore a place or meet a person and expose a roll of film in that place or on that person. It’s not particularly novel or groundbreaking in terms of dedicating a roll of film to one subject but it goes a little bit further as a project because I’m dedicating myself to shooting a roll every week and uploading and sharing the photos the following week on a dedicated blog. So, over the course of the year, I’ll be building a dedicated 35mm project; dedicated to film, dedicated to exploring a single subject and dedicated to doing it regularly. As a way of staying focused and, truthfully, because I’ll have my hands full with it; I’m also abstaining from digital photography (except my phone – come on!)
Despite the project still being in its infancy, there is an obvious thread emerging and a basis for a grander story about Sheffield* and the state of the City which I’ve noticed as I go exploring and looking for places to photograph. Right now, I’m keeping the stories silent and focusing on the pictures. However, I do get itchy fingers, so don’t write off more words appearing as the year progresses.
* The project isn’t Sheffield specific, but, it will focus on it more than any other place as it’s where I spend most of my time these days.