After experiencing my first Semana Santa in Antigua one year ago, I promised myself that I would stay inside and hide from the madness in the streets this year. It's quite impossible to portray how hectic the small colonial town of Antigua can become during this sacred week. The best way to experience how the city transforms is to come and see it for yourself. So, after my first experience in 2017, I chose to focus on friends and film to take my mind off of the bustling cobblestone streets.
I principally shot on two cameras: a new Fuji Instax Wide and my trusted Pentax K1000 that has traveled with me around the world. I also picked up a third point and shoot to test and am still waiting on the results from the lab where I have my photos developed here in Guatemala. Hopefully I can share the results when they come back from the lab.
I picked up the Halina Silhouette 28 DF from Fotografia Gonzalez for 125Q (~$12 USD) and had my Fuji Instax Wide special ordered from the Fuji Store in Antigua Guatemala just down the street. I really enjoy the process of shooting the Fuji. Something about creating with instant film really brings people together. I use it at events and weddings when clients ask, and it's always a huge hit. I love the way the colors develop and really appreciate the instant gratification this camera offers while keeping the fotos nostalgic in a sense that it is shot on film.
To scan the images, I use the PhotoScan app from Google on my iPhone. It works really well, and allows you to share the memories from your favorite instant film shots with your friends and loved ones. The last thing that I will say about the instant film shots, is that they are all an experiment. There is no light meter within the camera (there are only three variables you can change and the camera functions as mostly automatic) and the rangefinder is not incredibly accurate.
SELECT IMAGES FROM My Fuji Instax Wide
The shots from my Pentax were taken during the latter part of Semana Santa and the days immediately after in Antigua Guatemala and Lake Atitlan. Unfortunately, the film stock is incredibly limited in Guatemala. There are no professional Kodak stocks that I have found (to date) and most of what is available is mediocre Fuji stock at best. Thus, the shots below were all shot on Fuji Neopan 100, which I was able to find at the same store from which I ordered my Fuji Instax Wide.
I was impressed with the develop and scan job from RAW Laborotorio Fotografico, which although pricey, is incredibly professional and reliable. I can't recommend this lab enough if you are traveling through Guatemala and need a few rolls developed. I will certainly be using them more often in the future after a few nightmare experiences with companies in Costa Rica and Texas.
Below are some shots from my 35mm that I took in Antigua and my favorite spots on Lake Atitlan. I'm not a huge fan of some of the hues that the neopan roll contains, but it was certainly an interesting break from the familiar Ilford and Kodak stocks. I'm not sure I would chose to use neopan in the future, but since it's the only color negative stock in Antigua Guatemala, I might have to get used to it. I hope you enjoy them as much as I enjoyed taking them.
Select Images from my Pentax K1000
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