Sacramento Artist Raphael Delgado reimagines notions of film and the process surrounding what we know and what we think we know about the science of film. He continues to discover new ways to reinterpret familiar themes in his work. See more of his work here: Raphael Delgado Art Studio.
Film is dead to me, wait no it isn't. It burned me again thats for sure. My carelessness plus some malfunctioning camera equipment led to a blank roll of film with one frame in the middle of the roll but the rest had nothing on it. Not sure what happened.
This roll was stacked with only portraits of the Sacramento Mural Festival artists and what makes this sting is I put all my eggs in this basket. I shot zero digital images for the Sacramento Mural Fest. This was a personal project of course, I dedicated a week to get portraits of all the artists. My approach was using old film in an old 35mm film camera and I only wanted portraits. At the end of the week spent scouting, waiting, talking, and photographing some very cool artists from Sacramento and across the Globe, I aimed to have a unique portrait project.
Come Friday, I'd worked with all the artists. We finished shooting with Nate Frizzell in the afternoon with enough time to get the roll processed. The purest form of anticipation was coursing through me unlike any shoot for awhile. Film doesn't let you have any insights, I let that feeling burn so strong the whole week and when she handed me the roll she said, "We aren't going to charge you because there's nothing on the roll." I was devastated, I had worked with a lot of people I respected and just met, many of which allowed me to direct the brief shoot. Irubiel Moreno even insisted we switch hats for the shoot because I was wearing a local company's hat. Guilt and embarrassment washed over me and I was reminded of the fire that burns for film and sometimes that fire burns you. I remembered losing a special roll of film in high school and having the same feeling. It hurt, bad.
I let the artists down, and felt terrible. After steaming about it for a minute, I looked at the photo that made it, frame number 14. It's unlike any other image in the entire roll, which is strange. All the other images were close up portraits done in direct sunlight, and this was more candid and in open shade.
I enjoyed meeting all the artists, and thank them humbly for their contribution to our city. I apologize, I don't have the pictures we took together. I'm sorry to waste your time.
I monitored the progress on the Diogo Machado (Add Fuel) mural throughout the week and kept coming back but realized it wasn't going to be hit with sunlight. Jose Di Gregorio was helping fill in some sections for Spanish artist, Diogo Machado. His technique of stencil and free hand aerosol was incredible to watch.
When I say film is dead to me what I really mean is there's another fire lit that continues to burn and push me to explore. Pure eagerness to pick film back up and put it to use. People ask me why I bother with film and my response is that it's a feeling. It's a slower, more deliberate action and it changes the portrait sitting. I love the action of it. That, and nostalgia for waiting to find out about your pictures. Maybe I'm just a sucker for punishment. Who knows, maybe I have a funky film project in the works.
Post number one. I hope to share some stories here and collaborate with other creatives. This thing doesn't work if nobody sees it so if you like what you see please consider sharing. I want to make portraits with makers of things, performers of sorts, and otherwise artistic and athletic humans.