Taras Bunt (@bunt) is a photography hobbyist based in the South of England. He has been into photography for the past seven years, solely focused on digital photography.
A couple of years ago, he chanced upon a manual film camera off eBay, but the experience of shooting with it was unsatisfactory. "I've honestly never been so heartbroken, every shot from that first roll was... well, crap. What a waste of money, I thought. I was very naive, to say the least."
Taras builds LED screens for a living, which allows him the luxury to travel to different countries. He was lucky enough to be able to go to China to work at the Beijing Winter Olympics. He knew that pandemic restrictions would limit his options to explore, so he decided to bring his smallest camera—a newly-purchased Minolta 110 point-and-shoot camera that he found at a charity shop for £5.
"I just wanted to capture some moments around where I was working. I thought I'd give a point-and-shoot a go, since I wanted something easygoing without having to worry about settings all the time. The camera fit perfectly in my jacket pocket so I took it to work with me every single day without it being a nuisance."
Over the three weeks that Taras was in China, he used up two rolls of Kodak Gold 200. He captured many freestyle snowboarders and skiers in action, as well as the snow-capped environment. Because the location was 1,500-2,000 feet above sea level, the temperature was going as low as -25°C. It wasn't a pleasant experience since his hands would be frozen a few seconds after taking off his gloves.
"I was thinking, is this really worth it? The little Minolta's insides did struggle a bit, as I loaded a roll outside and it just froze, literally. I thought, here we go again, expecting to have another heartbreaking moment with film photography. It was difficult to walk up the sides of the mountains as the air was thin and the inclines were steep but it was so, so, so worth it. A one-of-a-kind experience and I'm glad I got to save some of those memories with such a nifty little camera."
Taras sent off the rolls to a film lab as soon as he got back home, anxious as he wasn't sure if the camera worked properly. To his relief, the photos turned out well, and he now owns two more point-and-shoot cameras!
"The excitement of receiving your developed shots is unmatched. It's the closest feeling you'll get to being a kid on Christmas Day."
See more photos at Taras's LomoHome.