The landscape of analog photography enthusiasts in Vietnam is undoubtedly growing: there are no shortage of film cameras to be found and the medium, by-and-large, is in vogue. Despite the film renaissance, however, getting quality insights about equipment and meeting like-minded photographers—offline, that is—can still be a challenge. Grain Vietnam, a website, zine, blog, and marketplace, is stepping in to not only give a platform to aspiring photographers but to foster a sustainable community.
Grain Vietnam positions itself as a one-stop-shop for all things concerning analog photography and Vietnam. It is a print zine, its website features interviews and gear reviews, and it takes submissions. And, most importantly it is open to everyone. So long as the photographs are taken on film and in Vietnam, Grain wants to see them.
“Above all, it’s about re-connecting people to their photography”, says Grain founder Antoine Wallet.
Within a medium that requires much diligence, patience, and a constant learning process, observing others’ techniques and experiences can be especially valuable. On Grain’s website, transparency and openness are a constant theme. One can see interviews with photographers, read blog posts on where to buy film cameras, and go deep into others’ techniques and favorites practices.
Getting people involved, after all, is Grain’s true function and goal. And there a number of ways to do so: to begin, Grain uses the hashtag #grainvietnam to compile a collection of photographs on Instagram. Those interested in contributing can simply use this hashtag, allowing them to then have the chance to be featured as Gain’s photographer of the day. When it comes to the website, people can submit photographs for the next zine, contribute to ongoing series’ like “In my bag” and “5 frames in…”. Where craft and personal inspiration are concerned, Grain gives everyone the opportunity to share articles of their own centered on why they shoot film.
The collective will also launch a way to bring photographers together in the city with Film Photowalks , organized in collaboration with Noirfoto. Its first edition will take place on August 11th in the heart of District 1, allowing participants to bring their favorite film along and capture the cityscape all-the-while comparing techniques and creating a cohesive network of enthusiasts in one place.
Grain’s first hard-copy zine, Hem, is available for purchase now. The second edition takes the theme and title of Imperfect Beauty and is currently seeking contributions. To learn more about Grain, visit their website or check them out on Instagram and Facebook.