Olena & My iPhone3G

Photographs, Photography & Words
4 min readDec 1, 2017


Olena — November 30 2017 — iPhone 3G — Photographs — Alex Waterhouse-Hayward

This blog should be an easy thing. It is not because there is so much in my head that I want to place here. I will attempt to make it succinct.

Olena (formerly the beautiful woman with the blue hair) came today to pose for my friend baroque bassist Curtis Daly and this obosolete & redundant & retired photographer. My heart sank while Olena was making herself up (she is superb at this) as she made a comment that people at age 75 were much too old to change. She said this with her back to me. I signalled my shock to Daily by pointing at myself and nodding negatively.

And yet this inflexible old 75-year-old man with the help of a support staff (the men at Leo’s Camera) and my friend Paul Leisz modernized me. He pushed me into the 21st century with computers and knowledge that normally is over my head but he manages to explain it all down to my level.

This old man still has some tricks up his sleeve, after all my grandmother used to repeat a refrán from the Argentine literary work Martín Fierro where the old man el Viejo Vizcacha gives his young ward a piece of advice:

“Fijate bien lo que hablo: El diablo sabe por diablo. Pero más sabe por viejo”.

This translates to: “The devil knows because he is the devil, but more so because he is an old man.”

There seems to be a present obsession with photographic equipment that sidesteps the idea of taking good photographs. These new cameras are super sharp and the colours are beyond the colours of Technicolor. There seems to be a backlash to things digital. So film is slowly coming back. Some of these photographers will soon find out some of the weaknesses of film if you don’t know what to do with it. These are the same people who will soon be bothered by the scratchy sound of brand new records on their middle of the road (if not cheap units that are now called record turntables). I have a long memory for brand new records that had built-in scratches and passages with shaky distortion. I do own a very good Sony linear-tracking turntable and my records sound pretty good.

I love film particularly b+w film which I can process in my Kitsilano home. But I no longer have a darkroom so I have opted for a very good Canon inkjet printer.

More and more my digital files from my Fuji X-E1 and my brand new X-E3 (I am currently trying to cope with the complexity of its “improvements” over my X-E1) dictate that the only way to get hard copy is with that Canon inkjet..

This old man knows that many of the best photographs have been the product of accidents. If the photographer is able to back step on the accident in question then these delightful accidents can be repeated at will.

Some five years ago when I was teaching at Focal Point a class called The Contemporary Portrait Nude I felt that as the instructor I could not take advantage of the situation and take my own photographs with my students. But I could and did every once in a while snap some pictures with my iPhone 3G. The central and most important button of the unit gave out so I retired the phone and purchased a new and better Galaxy.

The 3G I put away until I recently looked at some of those nude snaps. I knew that there was a style to be seen in the limitations of the phone. These limitations could either be magnified or minimized and both methods were stellar in my opinion. I had my 3G repaired. I took out the SIM card to convert it into a dedicated Apple Camera 3G. Here are the pictures I took of Olena today.

I know that the Viejo Vizcacha would have been delighted.

Fuji X-E3

Link to: Olena & My iPhone3G

Originally published at blog.alexwaterhousehayward.com.



Photographs, Photography & Words

Into Bunny Watson. I am a Vancouver-based magazine photographer/writer. I have a popular daily blog which can be found at:http://t.co/yf6BbOIQ alexwh@telus.net