If constraints help to fuel creativity, then consider the Olympus Trip 35 film camera my new constraint.
I picked up my copy on eBay from Light Burn Photo’s store last year – a great selection of re-skinned film cameras. The brown leather wrap is right up my alley.
Get this: You have four focusing zones. Close, near, far, and very far. That’s it. You have 1-6 meters to focus, or infinity.
And you can set the aperture, but the camera only has two shutter speeds: 1/200 and 1/40. The ISO dial goes from 25-400. Talk about constraints.
The results are pretty great, though, from what I’ve seen. I loaded a roll of Lomography 400 color film and picked away at it since the fall.
One niggle: the zone focusing is tricky to master. Quite a few of my shots had the wrong zone picked. I almost prefer full manual focus to this system.
It’s super small and light, and almost fully automatic, meaning I can take it anywhere and shoot. And boy, have I.
(Side note: film photography is saving my butt lately. It’s the one experiment that I can mess around with when I feel like it and not feel any pressure to post recent photos. It’s no-pressure photography, and I’m really digging it.)