Of all the shots in my back catalogue, this is the one I’m proudest of. Taken six years ago, this was part of my first personal photo project. Taking advantage of the Government’s edict that parents could take a certain amount of unpaid leave to look after children, an opportunity presented itself where I needed to take a month off. I decided that I would spend the month following my two year old daughter around and capture that period of her life.
I decided on a 1 camera, 1 lens, 1 film approach for the month. My choices were a Nikon F100 (I really do miss that camera), a 50mm F1.8 AF-D and because most of the shots would be in the house I opted for Kodak T-MAX 3200 as my film.
This shot was taken as she was settling down for the night and was lit with a single bedside lamp, a simple and natural setup.
I love this shot. I like the composition, the way she is staring at the camera. I love the grain and the contrast of the film. Kodak really made a great film in the 3200 T-MAX emulsion. Most of all I really love the lighting, which for me, makes this image.
A sad anecdote: I posted this image elsewhere shortly after it was developed and someone commented that it was out of focus and too soft, suggesting I should have chosen a lower ISO. It made me realise that there was a generation of photographers growing up without understanding the finer points of film, especially a film like T-MAX 3200. Made me feel very lucky to have grown up on film.