Olivia Rae James with the Contax G2


As a self-taught professional photographer who grew up in the era of digital cameras, the technical side of photography is not my forte. And although film is completely foreign to me, I’ve always loved the look of it and aimed for film-like imperfections in my digital photos. But the fact that I have no experience with actual film makes me feel like a bit of a fraud!


Being able to rent the Contax G2 for a month, without committing to buy it, was amazing. The entire first roll I shot, I just crossed my fingers and went for it, knowing there was a chance none of them could turn out (I’m all about learning by trial and error).


The day I picked up the film, though, I sat in my car going through the photos with the biggest grin on my face. Not only did they turn out, I loved them! They weren’t the “best” photos I’ve ever taken, but they felt pretty darn special. There really is something to that ineffable quality of film — and the mystery of not quite remembering what you took, not being able to perfect it in real time, but capturing the moment and rediscovering it later.


I’m so grateful to Film Objektiv for providing an affordable and educational way to play around with film  — there will definitely be a lot more film use in my future.

Adam Ottke