Guest Blog by Daniel Noppert (aka Daniel Klaas)
About 4 years ago I was lucky enough to be able to move to Europe for a few years, and it was here that I found my art muse, which was photography. At the time, I wouldn’t have guessed how much it would become part of my life.
Initially I started shooting street with my then trusty 50mm and Canon digital, however it wasn’t long after this that I realized shooting digital that something was missing. It felt almost too simple, too quick, too easy to manipulate something. I wanted it to always look different, warmer and softer.
During this time, I was also always on the lookout for new work, new inspiration and it was while searching Flickr I came across a then relatively unknown photographer by the user name of ‘micmojo’ (Jan Scholz – http://www.flickr.com/photos/micmojo/). I was immediately drawn to the light and dreaminess he was obtaining in his portraits, and it was his style that influenced my decision to start shoot film. I wanted that feeling that only film can give. That grain. That dreamy softness and warmth of film – exactly the same quality I wanted in my work.
Around the same time I met a fellow photographer in Europe who lent me his Rolleicord, and I remember the joy of getting my first roll of film back, the frustration of the out of focus shots, but the absolute pleasure and excitement of seeing a few of the scans that worked. These few scans got me hooked and I never looked back. I purchased my one true camera love, the Hasselblad 500CM and started shooting. To this day, there is nothing that compares to looking into the viewfinder of a Hasselblad, composing, focusing, recomposing and taking that shot. That large bright reversed image is something to truly behold.
As most film shooters seem to do, we are always looking for new ways to be creative, new film to try, new cameras and formats to play with, and earlier this year I got to spend just over a week shooting with fellow film buff and FPP friend April-Lea, when she visited me in Melbourne. (http://www.flickr.com/photos/so_amused/). I always admired April’s Polaroid work, and it was she who got me hooked onto my first Land Camera, the Polaroid 420. Whereas the Hasselblad was my quality and ‘pro’ camera, I loved how the Polaroid would give unexpected results, some mark on the film, a light leak etc, but at the same time keep that analogue dreaminess I was always wanting.
I’ve now reached the point where I rarely (if ever) shoot digital anymore, maybe some iPhone photos here and there and a random portrait, but my love is with film. Film allows me to create the art I want. Art that people look at and I hope can feel something, a connection, a sense of longing, or emotion, especially when I am doing my portrait and model work.
I was stopped on the street yesterday while I was finishing off a roll of 35mm film. The guy asked me about the camera (which was a Canon AE1) and film in general. We happily spoke for a few minutes about what makes film in so many ways better than digital, and this is happening to me all the time now. Someone sees you holding an old film camera, and they have to stop and chat.
This is more than fine with me. I am happy to share my joy of shooting analogue.
For most of the past 19 years, Daniel has worked for one of the financial institutions in Melbourne on various projects, however unable to release his creativity and love is photography there, he uses any spare time to shoot.
Predominately using his beloved Hasselblad 500CM, Daniel tries to bring out the natural beauty in his subjects using only natural light. While mostly a portrait shooter, he is also trying to blend his normal style into a mix of fashion/portrait work.
e-mail Daniel: firstname.lastname@example.org