A short film I made with footage taken in California, Philadelphia, Texas and New York.
“you know what i thought of the other day?
our childhoods are for our parents
they remember our first steps
they remember what we liked and what we didn’t like
they remember what we ate, what we didn’t eat
they’re their memories to have,
your life becomes yours
but when we were younger
it was once theirs.”
– april 23rd, 2015 | 4:08 pm
Something my best friend said to me a few years ago.
Film is so beautiful and nostalgic.
I picked up a small love for film about four year ago. I’d been sitting in Econ lecture, scrolling through artists and photographers when I stumbled upon a photographer.
A year after gathering a small appreciation (obsession) for film, I took a black and white film class.We took pictures in black and white and processed them in the darkroom, shot with borrowed Canon cameras.
I photographed strangers, artwork, puppies, toys, store fronts….so on and so forth. It was then that I realized: there is so much whimsicalness in the world. So much strangeness and beauty! The panda head human: a stranger. The toy train: more strangers. I began to shift my perception, seeing my surroundings in blacks and whites, hues and gradients, shadows and bright spots.
In the dark room, we removed the film from the tube in a room devoid of light. With washes and chemicals and timers, we processed the small rolls of copper-colored film until they were ready to hang and dry.
Then we brought the dried film into the darkroom, where we each had our own space to magnify the film images, invert them, and light-print onto a piece of light-sensitive paper. Afterwards, we doused the paper film in another long process of chemicals and washes before the sheet was finally ready to dry.
Processing film by hand was tedious, but fun.
I found an old film camera (a Canon snappy LX) about a year ago while cleaning out the house, and ordered some Superia film in. I’ve been slowly, slowly photographing with it. I have….six rolls of film to shoot.
When I look at other’s images taken on Canon Snappy’s online, they look like the photographs my parents used to take decades ago, when film was all they had.
My fingers are pink and numb, my nose tulipy red: I’ve just come back from prancing around in the snow, making snow angels, kicking up powdery light snowdust. Our boots sunk three inches deep. Light mound of snow layered the field, coated every surface, nook and crevice like frosting (Ah, Frosty!)
The snow was too fine for snowmen or snowballs, so we resorted to dragging our boots through the snow, windmilling bodies into snow angels, tossing handfuls of snow. “Snow, please,” I’d say, since I’d forgotten to wear mittens. Then a sprinkle-shower of snow would scatter over our heads.
my memories keep me warm until I remember they're just memories I wrote that in the summer first I was defiant then I was tired then I was reminiscent but mostly I was sad sometimes i wonder what the sheer durability of emotion says about humanity and whether it says anything at all and i wonder whether it's a reflection of openness or brokenness or the inability to fit into social narratives it's hard to imagine that i used to stay up late for the sake of it that i'd stay up late to talk to scour the internet to find articles i'd read not once or twice but maybe eight dozen trintuplion times at night i'll want explanations revelations soul-retching heart-baring confessions when i revisit late-night memories, there's an buttery hazy glow that envelops them which i'd get lost in during the summertime June 2016
Saturday morning. I woke up at 5 and we arrived by 6, the wind so cold it bit into us like knives. I wore my frayed red scarf as we boarded the bus, skies were purpley blue. I watched the sunrise through the sketch of back roads, blues and oranges and rocky gravel.
Countless love triangles zig-zagged their way unrequited among the best friends. Among him, you, her, me. Your best friend. My best friend. My best friend’s friend’s then-best-friend, then his best friend, or your best friend. I was to you as he was to me; she was to him as I was to you as he was to me. Now he’s little to them and we are nothing to each other.
Cycling through obsessions like a broken washing machine. I am: drawn to the same aesthetic like a film-drunk moth. Film, film, film and light gossamer. And beautiful people in beautiful places.
After a few heavyish days of work, I welcomed our Halloween weekend roadtrip with open arms.
We exited the city. Urban sights. Buildings, lanky; cars, cranky.
Traffic was awful on the way out. Extended the trip by an hour and a half. Slow eighteen-wheelers formed blocks on the 2 highway roads. The occasional snaking did little, if anything, and we found ourselves behind the same squarish white vehicle humming along at 75 mph. After an hour, we exited onto winding country roads dotted with ‘cow orchards.’
A horse, I pointed. Those are cows, he said.
Indie alternative playlist, light and happy. The sun beat down on the right side of the car, which I happened to be sitting on. I’d decided to wear a long sleeve sweater: this was a mistake. But eventually I propped up the window cover, and slung it over a hook.
We stopped for kolaches. I changed into a floral tank in the car. We ordered danish ‘kolaches’ with jelly-filled centers and the typical pigs-in-a-blanket. I got a mid-sized one as big as my face and munched on that as we returned to driving.
In time, the sun set. Violently pretty, I wrote on IG Stories. We cruised along a wider highway, making our way down the road. Red-pink, orange-yellow, white-blue sky. Sky line silhouettes. We exited onto a long road of tolls.
Falling darkness. Falling parts out of the angry aggressive truck beside us.
Toll flash. Toll flash. Toll flash. Toll flash.
“Nine tolls so far.”
Around 8:30, we stopped by a nearby BBQ hut dimly lit by the side of the road. A fake horse stood in front. We circled around the farm-like place, unable to find the entrance. Plumes of BBQ-esque smoke hung in the lot. We found the entrance. Inside were wooden seats; above, the decorative remains of a bony animal.
We reached our destination. To wrap the night up, we finished the BBQ and watched a few episodes of Haunting of Hill House, snuggled beneath the throw.