Copenhagen, caught on film

CPH FILM

Last November, I boarded a plane to my favorite city in the world. Copenhagen. I know I'm not the only one who loves the Danish capital so much. We all adore hygge and the happy Danes, rave about their cinnamon buns, grød, and are jealous of those highly fashionable inhabitants. Though it never gets old. Every time I visit, I get so excited when the plane starts to descend. I look out the window and spot those tiny colorful houses. From Amsterdam, you'll first pass Copenhagen, almost fly over Sweden, crossing that famous and beautiful Øresund bridge before making a large turn, and heading towards the city. What I also love so much, is that you can be in the center of town within an hour. Easily. I only carry hand luggage so it's even more convenient. 

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I was in town because of the Frama long table gathering. A dinner cooked by one of my favorite chefs, Mikkel Karstad. But before meeting him, I had plenty of time to stroll through the streets of Copenhagen. I brought my trusted Canon, but I didn't particularly feel like using it and stored it safely in my backpack. I wanted to experience the city though my own eyes, and not so much through the lens of my camera. A few days before, I got the opportunity to borrow an old Leica. I never shot film before, but had a feeling this might be something for me. I was sure 36 frames would suffice for this short trip, but it was so difficult not shooting all the time. Especially at first. I am used to taking every photo I want to take, ending up deleting more than half of them most of the time. After a while I got the hang of it. Whenever I saw an image in my head, I took a few extra seconds pondering whether I'd really want to take it. Most of the time, I realized I actually didn't! So I enjoyed the view and continued walking. It felt liberating. Though, at the end of the day, I did realize I would need another roll of film. ;) 

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Also, I did take different photos than I normally do. Street photography where people are involved isn't as easy as it's with my regular camera. People walking by, or riding their bicycle - I was afraid the object wouldn't be in focus as you have to control it manually. I was right - they mostly weren't. But that's also the charm of film perhaps. On the other hand, maybe if I would practice more I would get it right. Something that bothered me was that other people didn't realize I was shooting film. One time, I was ready to take a photo of a building, made sure the composition was the way I wanted it, ready to push the button and as soon as I did, someone walked in front of me. I wanted to yell at the person, saying: "HEY CAN'T YOU TELL I ONLY HAVE A FEW SHOTS ON THIS ROLL LEFT YOU IDIOT?" Of course I kept my mouth shut. Other times I was about to press the button and then suddenly changed my mind. It felt silly. 

 

But because I was really aware of every moment, seeing the city with my own eyes, instead of looking through the lens all the time, I thoroughly enjoyed my 30 or so hours in Copenhagen. I didn't feel the 'burden' of having to take photos. That might sound weird, but it sometimes feels like I am addicted to my camera. 

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CPH FILM / Mikkel Karstad

After having visited my favorite cafés and exploring some 'new' areas, I headed towards the Frama Studio Store on Fredericiagade. There I met Mikkel and his wife and we prepared the tables. The sun was setting, candles were lit and all the guests came in. As I was one myself as well, I sat down at one of the tables. I was joined by the sweetest of people: a lovely couple from Denmark, dear friends of Mikkel and Camilla, and two women who live near Malmö, in Sweden. We had fun conversations on the difference between Swedes and Danes, about how we Dutch either resemble or differ from them. We talked about our lives, their kids, jobs, ambitions, wat brought us here, and the excellent dishes Mikkel prepared for everyone. I really enjoyed myself. Everyone was so kind. It's always challenging signing up for something like this when you're traveling alone. But it turned out so well.

Around 9.30 pm (Danes eat quickly), I headed to Nørrebro, where my friend Karen lives. We met through Instagram a few years back. I love her moody yet colorful photos and she's a fellow journalist like me. It was nice to catch up. The next morning was spent in Nørrebro as well, before heading to the airport later that day. 

So this week, I finally got my film back. It was so exciting to see the results. I'd forgotten most of what I shot. It made me relive that short trip and added to the fun. I definitely recommend trying film photography. Hope you like the photos. xx

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Ingrid Hofstra1 Comment