Good Things Come to Those Who Wait


One of the joys of Lomography and Analogue Photography is that of waiting. Once the shot is taken, there’s no opportunity to ‘look on the back’ for the image. We wait. First for the roll to be finished, and then for the film to be processed, before we can see our images birthed into the world. But what happens when that process is interrupted. What happens if we don’t process the film for a while? How about if we don’t process it for 50 years?

One of the best things to do on a Sunday morning in Britain has to be to visit a Car Boot Sale. That peculiar, summer-time affair when the contents of lofts, garages and spare rooms explode onto a rug or table in a field near you.

The wily Lomographer knows that the opportunities for picking up a piece of vintage analogue loveliness abound at these events. What to us is a piece of technological beauty, wrapped still in its leather case, waiting to be discovered, is often just ‘an old camera’ to the stall holder.

Russian and Japanese Rangefinders, still-boxed Box Brownies, a perfect Praktica. They’re all out there.

The focus of this little piece though is a particular type of gem that is more seldom discovered. Exposed film. Found FIlm as it’s often called is much more than a piece of history. It’s time itself, trapped and sealed. Think about it for a moment. Someone saw something important enough to take a picture, yet never developed it. You as the finder will be blessed with the opportunity to see those images for the very first time.

What treasures will these simple rolls hold? Thoughts runs wild. Images of love, war, celebration?

But first a little more waiting while the rolls are finally processed and scanned, and then the moment of truth – the images.

Often you are left with more questions that answers. What exactly has the boy in the photo got in his hands that gives him so much pride? Why is the woman behind the wire with the dogs?

You must simply write the story yourself.

These images came from two rolls of 120/620 film found at a car boot sale. Use by dates were 1958 and 1968.

I’d love to know what that boy’s doing!

written by vdubber67 on 2011-07-07 #lifestyle #found-film


  1. sidsel
    sidsel ·

    I'd love to find some exposed rolls in some garage sale too! I've recently found some old cameras my grandpa stopped using back in 1990s, and one still had a half-exposed roll in it! Can't wait to see what comes out of it once developed, also because my grandpa died ten years ago, it would be like finishing something he had started when I was a little kid...
    Congrats on your first article, it was beautifully written, hope to see more soon!

  2. geekgoddesskilobyte
    geekgoddesskilobyte ·

    I have two 16mm rolls of film I want to develop from spy cameras I picked up at an antique store. I LOVE finding rolls of film already in a camera. Such mystery! It is kind of like unwrapping a present. Great post!

  3. jean_louis_pujol
    jean_louis_pujol ·

    This is an excellent article. The photos are amazing. I found out a film in my family house. After having developed it I discovered what my parents looked in the fifties…

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