Garon Kiesel's Gorgeously Grainy 110 Film Zine10 Share Tweet
Garon Kiesel is no stranger to analogue photography or Lomography, having attended photography school as well as first picking up an LC-A back in the 90s. Fast forward to today, Garon still shoots film and has embraced the tiny format of 110. At the end of 2022 he released a zine featuring his 110 work, appropriately titled "110." We recently had the opportunity to hear from Garon all about his love for the gorgeously grainy film and the process of making the zine.
Hi Garon, welcome to Lomography Magazine! Can you please tell us a bit about yourself and your work?
Photography has been a major part of my life for over 30 years. I attended photography school in the early nineties and went on to work as a photo assistant, black and white printer, and studio photographer. When the industry moved to digital our studio transitioned along with many others. At the time these changes were exciting. Unfortunately, this came at a cost. Photography became more about computer screens and megapixels and less about the darkroom and physical prints. I eventually left photography as a career in 2013 to work in real estate. Despite the job changes my passion for photography remained. In 2019 I returned to making photographs creatively, strictly using film.
Is "110" your first book? How was the experience putting it together?
Photography books have been an inspiration since the beginning. In High School, my parents gave me a photography book by Ansel Adams and I have been hooked ever since. I began making photo books in college. Nothing fancy. Most of them were prints taped in notebooks or Xerox pages printed and bound at Kinkos. Today books and zines have become much easier to make. Modern software and print-on-demand websites allow photographers to showcase their work on a relatively small budget.
What made you decide to put together a book of 110 photographs?
The idea for the book came after shooting 110 for approximately six months. Before 2022 I had never shot anything below a 35 mm film size. I really like grain and smaller 110 negatives accentuate that. When I saw that Lomography was producing 110 film, I couldn’t resist the opportunity.
How did you decide what subjects to shoot for the book?
I began by photographing whatever appeared interesting while I was on the road or visiting clients. The cameras are very small, making it easy to bring one along almost everywhere I went. Once I completed just over 20 rolls, I printed the scanned photos as contact sheets using Photoshop. I cut out the photos and arranged them individually on a table. This helped me edit photos and visualize how they could be sequenced as pages. I learned this technique from a Magnum Series Class on photographic book-making taught by Alec Soth.
Do you have a favorite photo from the book? Is there a story behind it?
The image that stands out in my mind is the black-and-white photo of a man walking in front of a theater. This photo was taken using the Diana Baby 110 Camera and 24 mm lens. The small film format and the plastic Diana lens create a dreamlike quality that larger negatives and glass lenses do not.
Do you have any tips or tricks for shooting with 110 film?
Keep the subject matter simple and close. 110 film does not render a lot of detail, nor is there a lot of depth to the images. Vast open landscapes or scenes that have a lot going on are best suited to larger film formats. My goal with 110 is to draw the viewer to one or two major points of interest. It’s more about an “idea” for a scene or subject rather than detailed documentation.
What was your favorite part of the book-making process?
The process I enjoy the most is taking a series of images and sequencing them together into a single body of work. Like so many others, most of my photos exist as negatives or on hard drives. It’s rewarding to see the photos in a printed format.
Will you continue shooting 110 film?
Yes! I haven’t chosen a project yet, but I would love to do some portraits using 110 film.
Do you have any future or upcoming projects that you can share?
I am currently working on a series of solargraphy images using various pinhole cameras.
Anything else you'd like to share?
It’s very exciting to see film photography making such a strong comeback. This is due in large part to the passion and enthusiasm of the younger generation. Film has a bright future and I’m excited to be a part of that.
To get your own copy of the limited zine and keep up with Garon's work, check out his Instagram.
written by eloffreno on 2023-02-06 #gear #culture #people #photobook #photo-book #110-photography #book-making