Commutes are Awesome With a Diana and a Smena In Your Rucksack

Every day I cycle through the woods, around the bay, into a park, and past a pond full of geese to get to work. Last week I took my cameras with me.

I’d never been to Swansea before the weekend I moved here; I’d never even been to Wales. I applied to come to university here based entirely on the photo on the front cover of the prospectus they sent me. That year the brochure featured the sprawling beach just across the road from campus, and I was sold.

Twelve years later I find myself back on campus in a different role and cycling to work along that beach every day. I pretty much landed on my feet.

My commute to work starts on the cycle path at the end of my street. Away from any cars the path winds its way through Clyne Woods, down the old railway track that decades ago used to go all the way to the end of the Gower Peninsula. The old station platforms still dot the path overgrown with trees. Little bridges go off to the left. The only building along the four miles or so through the woods is an old school pub which sells puncture repair kits – they know their clientele.

At the bottom of the valley is a fishing pond. I switch down a gear and cross over to the bay. From there I can see all the way from the old steelworks to the east, right over to Mumbles Lighthouse to the west. Each day I stop and gaze at the sun’s reflection on the water. Maybe it’s the exercise, maybe it’s the descent through the woods, maybe it’s the bright light after the shady path – but as I stand by the bay, the physical world becomes thin and I feel the spiritual realm close by.

I should tell you about my bike: it’s as much a relic from another time as my Smena. It used to belong to my father-in-law, and it’s USP is that it’s completely “unstealable”; no one would want it, anyway. The gears jam like the shutter on my old Lubitel and the chain pops off almost as frequently as the back of my Holga does.

From the bay I cycle into Singleton Park, past some geese that invariably try to attack me, and to my office. Best. Commute. Ever.

What does your commute look like?

These photos were shot using a Cosmic Symbol Smena, a *Diana F+*, and an *ActionSampler*, all loaded with expired Kodak ISO 400 films.

written by driftusmaximus on 2014-08-15 in #lifestyle #bicycle #expired-film #lomo-smena #lomography-diana-f #cosmic-symbol #commute #lomography-actionsampler

More Interesting Articles

  • Getting Festive with the Petzval Lens

    written by hannah_brown on 2014-12-12 in #world #locations
    Getting Festive with the Petzval Lens

    If you take a left out of Regent St, down a windy lane, past a wise old man with long fingernails, over a wooden bridge and through a giant metal gate you'll find a very magical place. Yep, it's the Winter Wonderland Festival in Hyde Park! It's free to get in and it is the perfect place to get some awesome Petzval shots!

  • The World According to Herr Willie: Gardens by the Bay, Singapore

    written by wil6ka on 2015-07-03 in #world #locations
    The World According to Herr Willie: Gardens by the Bay, Singapore

    Singapore, like Kuala Lumpur and Hong Kong, is a likely stopover when you fly far. The city is a tiny urbanized hub but it's very favorable if you know some high-spirited locals. I was lucky to hook up with king kimbo (@hakimbo), who showed me around. He took my lame limbs to the Gardens by the Bay, an amazing place which was visually striking. I was hugging some artificial trees there when I found a baby—a very big baby.

  • Doug DuBois on My Last Day at Seventeen

    written by anamartaml on 2015-09-15 in #people #lifestyle
    Doug DuBois on My Last Day at Seventeen

    Doug DuBois spent five summers photographing the small neighborhood of Russell Heights in Ireland to capture the essence of coming of age: the inevitable loss of youth and the imminent transition into adulthood. Those four years resulted in his latest book, My Last Day At Seventeen. The book is a visual tale told through a collection of photographs and gives an alternative perspective through a comic narrative around the same subject. This creative combination of two distinct narratives in one book not only works wonderfully in visual terms; it also serves as an essential tool that lets the reader dig deeper into the story being told, making one go back to the book over and over again, yet from a new perspective, every single time.

  • Shop News

    New Item: Revolog 36exp Plexus

    New Item: Revolog 36exp Plexus

    Feeling experimental? We have the perfect film for you. Load up a roll of Revolog Plexus 200 on your favorite 35mm camera and shoot as you normally would.

  • My Key to Escaping Digital Confinement: The Lomo LC-Wide

    written by nickpage on 2015-01-09 in #lifestyle
    My Key to Escaping Digital Confinement: The Lomo LC-Wide

    I'm Nick Page, a graphic designer based in the UK. After 20 years of working in advertising, I returned to film photography five years ago and found that the analogue life was just what I needed to get away from the "pixel perfect" images I deal with every day in my job.

  • Scott Brasher Chases Fashion in the Streets of New York with the Petzval Lens

    written by antoniocastello on 2015-03-09 in #people #lomoamigos
    Scott Brasher Chases Fashion in the Streets of New York with the Petzval Lens

    Scott Brasher is a fashion street photographer based in New York City. His work has been featured on many media outlets while working with brands like Cover Girl, MTV, Reebok, and Target, among many others. But before this, Scott started shooting in the streets of Williamsburg, Brooklyn, capturing its daily urban fashion. Last month, he took the Petzval Lens to the streets of New York to photograph scenes at the famous New York Fashion Week.

  • My Lomo’Instant Quick Tips

    written by tomas_bates on 2014-11-12 in #gear #tipster
    My Lomo’Instant Quick Tips

    I backed the Kickstarter project for the Lomo’Instant earlier this year and was thrilled to receive it last week. I love how the camera naturally encourages you to experiment with its different features, whether it’s through flashing your multiple exposures with different colors or trying different creative techniques after your shots has been ejected. Here are a few tips from what I’ve discovered from playing with the camera so far (and a couple of tips I want to try out in future)!

  • Shop News

    Shoot recognizable images with the Petzval

    Shoot recognizable images with the Petzval

    You want your subject be the center of attention? Petzval lens photos are recognizable for sharpness and crispness in the centre, strong color saturation, wonderful swirly bokeh effect, artful vignettes and narrow depth of field that will make your subjects stand out!

  • Yelle Goes Crazy with The LC-A+

    written by antoniocastello on 2015-02-19 in #people #lomoamigos
    Yelle Goes Crazy with The LC-A+

    Julie Budet, better known as Yelle, is a french musician, who in 2007 joined forces with GrandMarnier (Jean-François Perrier). Since then, they have been working together, creating music and touring around the world. Last year they released their 3rd album - Complètement Fou (completly crazy) - and took the LC-A+ with them on their US tour.

  • Falling In Love With The LC-A 120

    written by hannah_brown on 2015-04-06 in #gear #reviews
    Falling In Love With The LC-A 120

    There are quite a few perks that come with working for a film photography company, and the best perk of all is testing out the latest cameras. I can remember buying my LC-A back in 2009 and being really inspired to shoot film again. When the LC-A 120 came along, I couldn't wait to try it out around London. Join me as I test out this super medium format beauty.

  • The New Petzval Lens: For Portraits with Swirly Bokeh

    written by wesco on 2014-11-27 in #reviews
    The New Petzval Lens: For Portraits with Swirly Bokeh

    My brother purchased the new Petzal lens by Lomography and Zenit through the Kickstarter campaign. Last spring, I was able to borrow it for a few weeks. Read on to find out my first impressions of this portrait lens!

  • Shop News

    Fuji Instax Wide 300

    Fuji Instax Wide 300

    Shoot wider and bigger with this new instax camera that has film format twice the size of the instax mini films!

  • Travel Stories: June '15 in Peru by sallycanela

    written by Julien Matabuena on 2015-08-11 in #world #locations
    Travel Stories: June '15 in Peru by sallycanela

    You know that place you always picture in your head when you think of your dream holiday destination? That was Machu Picchu for me. Last May I decided to go for it and embarked on a two-and-a-half-week trip around Peru with my boyfriend.

  • St. George's Day Recap

    written by gise11e on 2015-05-05 in #world #locations #videos
    St. George's Day Recap

    St. George's Day was sunny and full of energy this year. A group of Morris dancers graced us with their presence around Soho, and we took the chance to do an impromptu shoot with our favorite cameras just outside the Lomography Gallery Store!

  • Fresh from the Lab: One Roll of Film and the Lubitel 166U

    written by fadjaradiputra on 2014-11-07 in #lifestyle
    Fresh from the Lab: One Roll of Film and the Lubitel 166U

    Adi, Ekeu, and I did a lomowalk around downtown Bandung last Saturday, the beginning of November. We planned to use our Lubitel cameras with only one roll of film each. We were inspired by the One Roll of Film Project by four Tokyo-based photographers with their Hasselblad cameras. This is about the one roll of film I shot with the Lubitel 166U, which made me love shooting in medium format even more.