Analog travel: Hong Kong & Japan.


This ones a bit after the fact, but still worth it.

After wanting to travel to the East for most of my life, in May I took a month out to embark on an amazing trip!

I spent a week solo in Hong Kong, then flew over to Tokyo to do a week solo. From there, a mate flew over and met up with me, then we traveled down through Japan for a couple of weeks, using our Japan Rail Passes, which is totally the best way to go.

For the last few years, I've been traveling really light and also, only bringing analog cameras with me. Long gone are the days where I'd lug a 5D and a bunch of lenses and other gear. I now just bring my Olympus XA2, which is my opinion is the best analog rangefinder [that isn't a Leica or costs £100+], and my Canon A1 with a 50mm on the front.

I've found that when I travel with only film, I become a lot more thoughtful of what I'm shooting and ask myself if it's worth the price tag per frame, is it worth it at all as well as thinking about if I really need to take it at all? It also makes me really search for the best perspective when shooting, so I can be sure I've gotten the most out of the available composition.

I was totally blown away by the selection of film available in both Hong Kong and Japan. In particular, there was a brand found in the major Japanese cities called Yodabashi, which has a whole section devoted to analog photography, and includes a refrigerator full of different film types with bulk packs as an option. Being used to small shops in the UK and going to Boots for a deals on Ilford HP5+, this was a total bonus.

Even though I was being a bit restrained in my shooting, after a month of eye watering scenery and people, I still shot 27 rolls!! After much time in the darkroom, I developed 14 rolls of Black & White, and had the rest done at a professional lab in Brighton, to then be scanned at home.

From these negatives, I've been producing books. As time goes on and I have these made up, I'll be posting them on here as well as on my Instagram.

Hikaru Funnell