Mary Kang is an active Film Club Member who takes beautiful photos! Her images are nicely composed and have a soft quality to them that is dream-like. This week we decided to interview her to get to know her better and what she likes about film photography. Scroll down to read the interview and see some of her photos.
PL: What got you interested in film photography?
MK: I started admiring film photography when a friend of mine began toting his camera around and sharing his photos with me. I loved the quality of the photos but also reminiscing on shared memories together months after the fact. I started to do my own research and took the plunge myself during quarantine after my parents found my late grandfather’s camera and lenses and shipped them to me! It remains a way for me to feel connected to him.
PL: What type of camera do you shoot with, and what kind of film do you usually use?
MK: Nikon FM2 and point and shoots: Minolta Hi-Matic AF and a Canon espirit (a fun, free FB Marketplace find!) As for film, it’s been hard to find anything affordable or in-stock these days! Been working with Kodak Gold lately and a few precious leftover rolls of Portra 400.
PL: When out photographing, what are some objects or elements within a scene that inspire you to take a photo?
MK: Moody lighting and small moments! I stop (or pull over) to capture details and emotion in an otherwise common scene for me: Cotton candy skies behind the overgrown silo I drive by all the time, the light perfectly hitting an old homemade basketball net I noticed on a dog walk, the big cow staring at me on a long country road…
PL: What are some qualities that you like about film photography vs. digital photography?
MK: I enjoy shooting film because of the connection.
Connection to the moment - having to be mindful as you shoot since each roll of film is so precious! This means I am more thoughtful about each shot, and am more present in each moment because of the delayed gratification. Being a yoga student and teacher - just practicing what I preach about mindfulness!
Connection to my grandfather in shared hobbies, using his lenses.
Connection to a simpler, analog time - nostalgia.
PL: Some of your photos seem to capture a variety of places you have traveled to. What does it mean for you to capture these places/moments on film?
MK: Film photos allow you to relive and reflect on that moment, that trip, revisit how you felt…long after arriving home.
PL: Out of all of these photos, which one is your favorite and why?
MK: Laundry hanging on a clothesline! I enjoy the way the leaves frame the photo as if the viewer stumbled out of the brush onto this quaint scene of a pastel wardrobe soaking up the sun. It transports me right back to that perfect day in Ravello, Italy - my friend and I had actually taken one wrong turn and gotten separated from the group, but ended up finding a wonderful terrace bar with an epic view, steps away from where this shot was taken!
Every day, Club Members take exceptional pictures. If you are not a Film Club Member yet what are you waiting for? Join today to support the photo community in Philly and to start saving money on film processing!