33mm film

Capturing the atmosphere

Meet Maya Beano, the photographer behind our main homepage and social media cover images this month. We were so taken with her haunting 35mm film photos after printing one of her pictures in issue 32 that thought we'd quiz her about her inspiration and process.

When did you first fall in love with film photography? 

I've always really loved cameras, but it was only a couple of years ago that I properly got into it. After shooting with a digital camera for five years, I decided to take up something different. 

What is it about 35mm film in particular that you love?

My friend's room was where I shot my first full 35mm film roll – a group of us were just sitting around eating chocolate on a chilly autumn day. I remember being enamoured with how real the photos from that day felt. There was something very therapeutic about that tangibility. I also see 35mm film as a stepping-stone towards exploring other film formats, like instant and medium format, which I will hopefully have time to do one day. 

What advice do you have for people who want to start exploring film photography?

I would encourage everyone not to shy away from experimenting. I think it's important to realise that no matter how good you get at film photography, it can still be full of surprises. Also, photograph what you love. 

What's been your proudest creative moment so far?

It's satisfying when I look back at a photo that captures the exact emotions I was feeling at the time of the shoot. I try to do this with all of my series, and when it works, it is a proud moment. 

What's your favourite photograph you've taken? (Can we see it?!)

Oh this is a difficult question, because I feel attached to different photos at different stages of my life. Right now, I'd go for the image above, that I took of my brother just before his birthday last December – it was the perfect winter sunset and the moon had just come out. I'm a big fan of peaceful moments. I could always do with more of those! 

Who inspires you?

Friends, family, kind people. Everyone I love.

What are you working on at the moment?

I've taken photos during a couple of road trips this summer, so I'm currently busy with those. Most of these were taken in Northern Ireland where my best friend grew up. I'm also going to the US later this year for both work and leisure, so I plan to make the most of my time there photography-wise.

Maya Beano is a UK-based photographer. You can see more of her photography series at mayabeano.com, and her wanderings in film at instagram.com/dreamlabcoat