Portraits captured on film by Cape Town-based photographer Geoffrey Newmarch. We caught up with him to learn a bit more!

Geoffrey Newmarch is a Cape Town-based photographer with an enthusiasm for shooting on film. We caught up with him to learn a bit more about his work and his medium of choice.

When and how did you start experimenting with photography?

Can’t quite say for sure, but the first camera I started playing with was an old Instamatic camera that my grandmother gave me when I was about 6 or 7.

I’d say that I started taking photography more seriously about 10 years ago.

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What do you like most about shooting film?

Film forces you to consider what you are going to shoot, before you’ve even picked out your film.

I enjoy picking out film stock that suits my subject matter and lighting requirements.
I enjoy waiting for the right moment; feeling a bit like a hunter, patiently observe the world around with my camera loaded and ready.

Being aware that each shot will get burned onto a roll of film, that has a finite end, makes it more critical to choose the right moment, and have your camera dialled in. Film keeps you on your toes and forces you to focus.

And once a roll is finished, that anticipation of taking your valuable body of work, to get it developed; a cocktail of excitement, curiosity and hope, enters my thoughts like a sweet drink in a fancy glass, with a umbrella in it.

Shooting on digital has none of that (or any of film’s downsides…).

What I like most is when you get your film back and that picture you were so keen on comes out better than you expected.

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Do you shoot professionally, as a hobby, or is it something else?

I shoot as a hobby, I suppose.

I find that taking pictures is a great creative outlet for me. Sometimes, just the craft of taking a picture, recording a friends face, or a special ‘Kodak moment’ can be very rewarding in itself.

I’d certainly like to develop my skills and my eye to a point where I feel I could justify charging someone for a print and have the hobby pay for itself.

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What camera(s) do you shoot with, and what’s your favourite?

The bulk of my shooting is done on my little Pentax MX. Which also happens to be my favourite. It’s a compact SLR that is easy to carry.

I do have a little Baldessa rangefinder that has taken many of my personal favourite photographs, although I find that it is my most difficult camera to use well.

Thanks for sharing your photos and insights with us, Geoff!

Here’s a few more of Geoff’s portraits. Visit his Tumblr, Flickr and Facebook page for more of his work.

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