In your bag No: 1614 – Dill Sagoo
Dill’s reignited his passion of film with this fine selection to always accompany him on the streets.
Hi everybody. I’m Dill, 25 years old and from the UK. I’ve actually been featured by Bellamy in the “In your bag” series quiet some time ago (#136 and #263). I have to admit this may be a bit of a long post, so everybody who’s reading this I suggest you grab a cup of tea and put on some relaxing music. Everybody has a story, so here’s mine.
Photography is something that always fascinated me as a child, I remember playing around with my dad’s OM10, constantly firing the shutter and rewinding even though there was no film inserted in there, just cameras in general always fascinated me. Unfortunately that was thrown out as my family assumed it didn’t have any value to it, I remember as a child the mirror getting locked up, I’m sure all the problem was a drained battery.
Growing up I could never afford any photographic equipment as it was so notoriously expensive for a teenage me, so around 2009/10 time when I first started to research photographic equipment properly, I thought “Hey, film stuff seems pretty cheap, I guess it wouldn’t be a bad idea starting off with film”. So it was back then I purchased an Olympus OM20 with a Zuiko 50mm f1.8 and a Canon EOS 1000FN (which I couldn’t afford to put a lens on). A little while later in 2010 when I got my first job as a kid, working for Sainsbury’s (a supermarket chain in the UK), I purchased a Pentax K1000D and this was my first foray into digital. I then sold this and purchased a EOS 400D and then a EOS 20D, I always stuck with the same film cameras though.
Fast forward to 2011 and I managed to score a job with Jacobs Digital (I’m sure Bellamy and anybody from the UK will remember them). Jacobs was a photographic retailer in the UK for a number of years, it was where I first started developing a serious case of gear acquisition syndrome! In my store in Leicester, UK (which was one of the flagship stores of the company) we had a small pre owned cabinet. I remember getting so excited as a kid whenever there would be any film equipment in it. Luckily the store manager who was a real awesome guy used to let me scour the company stock database and get film equipment transferred from other stores in the UK (because I was so passionate about it and I could sell it to customers). I purchased a lot of cameras from this place, oh so many cameras. I still remember sleeping on a Leica M6, oh how I regret not putting that to the side and not purchasing it. I still remember selling that to a customer, how it pains me so.
It was also the year I discovered Japan Camera Hunter and really inspired me to keep shooting, so I started shooting a lot more fashion editorials in the studio, with proper lighting setups, whereas on the streets I continued to shoot film, Neopan 400CN to be exact, as this was a chromogenic process film and there was nowhere in my city that would develop true black and white films.
Sadly in July 2012, due to the recession in the UK and due to so many people stopping buying cameras from brick and mortar stores, combined with the fact that it was the beginning of the smartphone age, this resulted in an apocalypse for Photographic retailers in the UK. Youngs, Jacobs, Jessops all perished within months of each other.
Luckily I wasn’t out of work for long and I got a job as an assistant buyer for a cool, high end fashion store, this however is what lead to my decline in photography for many years. Although I dabbled with equipment still, buying and selling gear for the next couple of years, I didn’t feel very inspired to go out and shoot. This resulted to me ultimately in 2015 not having any gear and not taking any photos. For years there was something inside me that never died though, I always thought to myself “What happened to that passion you had inside you, you should really go out and shoot again”.
Which brings me to 2018, at the start of the year I came across an Instagram which I really loved, it had my whole kind of minimalist aesthetic that I love, and the presentation of all the cameras and lenses was really something cool. It was literally that one profile on Instagram that reignited my love for photography, it had a collection of not just equipment but photos, featured from photographers all over the world, so it made something really click in my brain.
So I started scouring the web, catching up on everything that I had missed over the years from the photography world. I must of spent hours on JCH, page after page looking at Bellamy’s posts, I have to give that man some props, the amount he has done for the film community, it’s hard to think anybody has done that much, along with JCH, I went onto John Sypal’s blog as well (Tokyo camera style) and all the other blogs I used to enjoy reading.
So the first camera that marked my return into photography was the Nikon F5, although I used to love Canon (and you’ll see this from my old in your bag posts) I think it’s time for something new and I’m really enjoying using Nikon. Although I don’t use Canon anymore, it’ll always have a special place in my heart as it was one of my first cameras from the “Big boys” of the photography world. Along with the Nikon F5, I got a Nikon D700, nothing special but I don’t tend to shoot much digital, so its just there for use for when and where I need it. On top of that I got a Olympus MJU Zoom for a little compact shooter for when I need something portable and a Olympus OM1N in a beautiful black finish (my love for Olympus OM cameras will always be undying, I mean have you ever stared into one of those viewfinders?). In terms of lenses I use a Nikon 28mm f2.8D (mainly for landscape/cityscape/interior shots), a Nikon 50mm f1.8D (mainly for closeups and portraits) and a Zuiko 50mm f1.8 just as a general all rounder for when I’m using the OM1n. I only carry a few other items as I like to travel with the minimum amount of stuff, this normally includes a Montblanc card holder, JCH film holder, Ace & Tate Tiger Wood specs and a Muji notebook and pen, just down note down random things and ideas.
In terms of an actual bag, funnily enough I don’t actually have one. Well I do but its more of my everyday carry backpack, that I’ll just load up with a camera I want to use that day.
Compared to what my setups used to be and they were absolutely crazy, instead of packing a bag full of gear and carrying it around with me, nowadays I only tend to carry the bare essentials. I guess its a sign of maturing and trying to push away that G.A.S and focus on shooting (although I don’t think I ever will stop collecting beautiful manual SLRs).
Oh yeah, my actual bag is a Yoshida Porter and Co backpack, it’s a Japanese brand (I’m sure Bellamy and any Japanese viewers of the site are well aware of the brand), it’s huge in Japan, everybody from kids to your granny will use them, but strangely outside of Japan its a brand that’s big within the street wear scene (most likely cause its Japanese and very, very well built).
If my bag does get chosen to be posted then thank you to Bellamy and his team and I continue to enjoy your website.
Much love, happy shooting and peace.
Thanks for sharing with us your bag shot again Dill. I love Porter bags as well, still using their collaboration with Nikon from 10 years ago!
Keep them coming folks, we need more submissions, so get your bag on Japancamerahunter.com
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.
So refreshing to not see a LeicaM or Contax G/T post. The Nikon F5 is such a harcore camera! I hope you’ll keep it forever. It was the diabolical design of the F4 that cemented my love for film. I think one big and one tiny film camera is all you ever need. Thanks for posting something refreshing!
Great back story. And like your online shop. I ave fond memories of Jacobs, as a past regular customer I was sad to see it go. And I’ve always lusted for an F5 – the beast, the nastiest, most pro 35mm machine ever conceived! An ideal tool to build muscle mass AND make photos simultaneously! However, need to call you on your description of the D700 as ‘nothing special’ – it may just be biased due to the prism of the film/digital conundrum. Personally, I LOVE my D700, those big fat juicy full frame megapixels, oh yeah. And the noise at high ISO isn’t unpleasant, film-like even. It is one of Nikon’s finest EVER cameras, film or digital regardless.
@Johan – Thank you so much for the kind comments! It’s crazy how much my setup has changed since this a few months back! I’m now rocking an F80, FM3a along with the same lenses. As much as a I absolutely adore the F5 the think is just a tank
@Robert – Thank you also! Also I stick by what I said, the D700 is a great machine but it’s nothing much to shout about by todays standards. Also there’s no bias with me, I understand both film and digital have their pros and cons.