It’s been a little while since we turned on our Spotlight here at UK Film Lab, so here we are with a new one and we have lots more lined up! Our latest UK Film Lab Spotlight is on Panos Voudouris a talented photographer who we’ve known for some time. Panos has been shooting a lot of b&w film lately – a range of different film stocks and a great deal of experimentation with pushing and pulling. It’s fair to say we’ve really enjoyed working on his film and seeing what he’s been out shooting and we’re particularly struck by his b&w work. Here’s a little Q&A with Panos, including a new ‘Tips’ section with some particularly useful insight into Panos’s journey with film, and then you can see a selection of his b&w work below. Check out Panos’s website to see more of his work: http://panosvoudouris.com
1. Why do you take photographs?
I take photographs for myself, it is not a profession for me, so in a sense it is relaxing. I can pick up the camera and wait/look for a shot which means while I’m doing that I can forget about everything else. I am also fascinated by the cameras themselves, particularly as I seem to amass various old mechanical ones.
2. Why do you shoot film?
I was shooting digital till 2009 until one day I came across Jose Villa’s photos. I started looking more into other film photographers and given the tumbling prices of medium format equipment I decided to buy my first ever medium format camera: a Bronica SQB. I was hooked immediately! Within 6 months I sold all my digital stuff and have since acquired various 35mm, 6×6 and 6×7 cameras. I find the soft tonality of medium format colour negative film fascinating. It produces perfect skin tones, a radiant yet light and airy look that, for lack of a better description, just makes me feel happy. I also like that once I’m done shooting the process ends there: UK Film Lab takes care of the scans and all I need to do is pick and choose which photos I like.
3. Why do you use UK FIlm Lab?
I met Christian and Erica in 2013 during a film workshop and decided to try again getting scans from a lab. Before that I did try various labs in the UK but the scans I was getting back were mediocre at best and not worth the expense. When I got my first set of scans back from UK Film Lab I felt as if I was looking at somebody else’s much better photos! Since that day I have not wasted a single moment scanning myself, neither have I thought about sending my film elsewhere. Not only are the scans amazing but the feedback is also great, particularly when trying new films or shooting in under various conditions. Perfect scans, ready to print, every time.
4. Do you have any tips for other photographers?
I know everyone says shoot more to learn and while it is true that the more you shoot the better you get, I found that shooting more on itself is not that useful after a while. What made a real difference to me was getting the workflow right after the shooting is done, i.e. either learn how to develop and scan properly or find a good lab. For me, once I found the lab I immediately gained the confidence in my shooting as the buck now stops with me. No more doubting about “if I shoot like this then scan like that then photoshop x and y I might get a good result”. A great lab means I can concentrate on my shooting and improve on that, while having the freedom and confidence to experiment with more film stocks, cameras and shooting conditions.