Having been into film photography for a little over a year, I saw visiting my sister in Morocco as the perfect opportunity to take some pictures in a different environment from the rainy streets of Leeds. This particular roll was shot in Casablanca and Rabat (there’s even a picture of my Dad on the train between cities), which proved to be the perfect places to get a variety of subjects, from the bustling alleyways of the medinas to wide-open spaces such as the square surrounding the Hassan II Mosque.
The first camera I bought from a charity shop near me, a Canon EOS 100 with the kit 28-80mm f/3.5 lens, seemed like an obvious choice to take with me – so far it’s survived house parties and beach trips, takes decent photos, and because I got it on the cheaper side I don’t feel I have to be overly careful with it. The autofocus system is also really accurate, great for quick snaps when out and about!
I usually shoot colour film, but fancied a change, so as a cash-strapped student I took the cheapest B&W film I could find, Kentmere Pan 400. I was interested to see how the vibrant African cities appeared in monochrome, and I was very pleased with the results! Shot at box speed (the EOS 100 has a DX code reader), the grain is visible, yet not overbearingly so, and I found the contrast to be dramatic enough for most situations, even if some shots come out fairly grey at times.
Since my trip to Morocco, I’ve also taken rolls further afield to Beijing, where I worked this summer. I’ve recently ventured into the world of home developing and scanning, and though the shots of the ultra-futuristic city were slightly rougher round the edges, I’m satisfied, especially for a first try at black and white developing and scanning. I can see myself carrying a couple of rolls around in the future – in my opinion, it’s a solid, if unexciting, all-purpose film at an accommodating budget, ideal for those coming to B&W photography for the first time.
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This series is produced in conjunction with Hamish Gill's excellent 35mmc.com. Head on over to read the other half of these stories there.
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