In your bag No: 1554 – Matt James


by Michael Nguyen /

3 min read
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In your bag No: 1554 – Matt James

Matt sends us a a beautiful bag shot and shares how in the end film reigned supreme for him.

My name is Matt and I’m a full time animator here in Canada during the day and shoot whenever I can. Mostly weekends and when I get a chance to travel.

After a departure from film for a few years I’ve started to dive back in. While I still love digital they seem to be the second choice when walking out the door these days. The most exciting thing for me that changed when I started shooting film again is that I began carrying a camera every day. I can’t help but think about all of the photos of friends and family that I maybe missed over the years when I was either frustrated or bored with the digital cameras I had at the time.

It’s helped changed the way I view photography and I’ve shifted to shooting more of the every day moments and worrying less about whether it’s technically a good shot or not, which for me works. Developing at home has helped with shooting daily and I’m a lot less cautious with film than I maybe had been in the past. There’s something about it that’s more freeing and I think it has to do with the limits it imposes. While things like developer choice and time can change the final image it’s mostly already out of your hands, which I love. I worry less about editing and there’s no saving bad shots by pushing a DNG 5 stops. It’s made me get closer and try harder when I see the shots that didn’t work out.

It almost doesn’t need to be said but having the A7 when you already have lenses kicking around makes so much sense. I use the FD lenses from my F1 on it a lot. No one warned me that when you get in to mirrorless and you can mount anything you automatically just become a lens collector. I try to keep myself in check but lenses just seem to just keep showing up at my doorstep.

The image above is of the cameras I seem to rotate between using the most but there’s a bunch of other bodies and lenses sitting on the shelf. The Leica, Canon and Konica usually get either HP5 or Portra but I’ve got some Streepan in the fridge too.

I love the site and it’s definitely been a great resource and huge motivator.


Thanks for sending us your bag shot Matt. Great thoughts on why you went back to film and good luck dealing with the lens collecting bug ;)

Keep them coming folks, we need more submissions, so get your bag on

Send me a high resolution image of the bag. Optimum size is 1500px across. Please ensure there is a bag in the shot, unless you don’t use one. The more you can write about yourself the better, make it appealing and tell us a story. Snapshots of your gear with a camera phone and no words will not be featured.
Oh and don’t forget your contact details (twitter, flickr, tumbler et al). Send the bag shots here. Please understand that there is a long wait now as there is a backlog of submissions. Not all make the cut, so make sure yours is funny/interesting/quirky. And please make sure the shot is of good quality, as the ones that are not do not go up.


3 comments on “In your bag No: 1554 – Matt James”

    Dawid February 15, 2018 at 6:11 pm / Reply

    :-D “No one warned me that when you get in to mirrorless and you can mount anything you automatically just become a lens collector. I try to keep myself in check but lenses just seem to just keep showing up at my doorstep.” Got the same thing :-D

    Alex_M_V February 16, 2018 at 12:58 am / Reply

    really nice work on tumblr. are you on Instagram?

    Kelvin February 16, 2018 at 1:45 am / Reply

    Laughed out loud at the lens collector comment – I am the same. I bought a few lenses from multiple systems for the purpose of adapting them to mirrorless cameras but then I got curious to see how they would look on film… and that’s how I ended up with my Pentax K/M42 and Contax SLR kits. Don’t use these lenses on mirrorless much now, they look just right with film.

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